Dogfish Head out of Delaware continues to make forward-thinking beers while riding the line of being different. There’s a fine line between “too much” and “wow, that’s interesting” and Dogfish Head lies in that risky zone. This year they celebrate “20 off-centered years” with some fine creations.
One of its beers interested me quite a bit: Pennsylvania Tuxedo. Here’s a video from Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione about Pennsylvania Tuxedo:
(Video from Dogfish.com)
Here’s a picture of my beer:
Dogfish Head Brewery: Pennsylvania Tuxedo
Style: American Pale Ale (APA)
Sam explained the beer much better than I will be able to, but let me share some of my personal experience drinking this beer. What surprised me the most about Pennsylvania Tuxedo is just how hidden the spruce is in the aroma of the beer. Sure, there is some spruce detection in the smell. But the amount of the spruce detected in the taste of the beer is miles ahead of the smell.
The extreme spruce tip addition isn’t a bad thing in this beer. In fact, the spruce flavor complements the hops amazingly well. Almost too well for a beer that “tastes like a tree”. The spruce is overwhelmingly the star of the show in this beer. There is some hop bitterness, but again, all your senses care about or notice is the spruce. The spruce tips also do a fantastic job at blanketing the 8.5% ABV of Pennsylvania Tuxedo.
The spruce is loose for sure in this beer! This beer pairs well with relaxing under the family Christmas tree.