I stated earlier that I’m a total fool for Abita Purple Haze, a wheat beer with a substantial raspberry component brewed in Louisiana. Something has happened to make me doubt my total foolery.
Last weekend the Louisiana people–who will hereafter be referred to by their full names, Amelia Altbier, and her husband who knows very specifically what he likes, Chris Corona–invited me over for game night. Amelia had rolled her own mixed six pack of beer and cider. She offered me a bottle of Colorado’s Great Divide Wild Raspberry Ale, and two sips in or so I announced that it might be a better beer than Purple Haze, to my and everyone else’s surprise.
I was a little shocked and appalled at myself, so I determined a multi-participant heads-up comparison was in order. Surely I was wrong.
So last night my sister and brother-in-law–who will hereafter be referred to by their full names, Hermione Hefeweizen and Irving IPA–invited Amelia, Chris, me, and my date my over for an Oscar party. I foisted raspberry brews on everyone. My date, Abita Purple Haze’s staunch defender, refused to entertain the possibility that there might be a superior raspberry beer and therefore offered to manage the pouring and the tasting rather than participate directly. Everyone got 6 ounces of each beer.
I’m embarrassed to report that the Great Divide Wild Raspberry Ale was preferred by 4 out of 5 of us. The wheat component in the Purple Haze is much stronger when you put it in direct comparison to the Great Divide, and it goes a little weird in your mouth. Irving IPA even said, “This smells like wet cat.” I feel strange about the outcome.
To Amelia Altbier’s Louisiana credit, she was the holdout for the Abita.
It should probably be noted that these beers did not appeal to Hermione Hefeweizen in the slightest. She made this face again:
I’m not sure how to proceed. Even with this direct comparison, I’m pretty sure I’d always choose the Purple Haze in an obstinate act of southern pride. That’s probably the definition of being a total fool for something, choosing it over something your brain, in a blind comparison, prefers.