I’ve had this beer a couple times now and this post is coming a bit late considering this is a summer beer. But I figure it can’t hurt to post this to help you all prepare for next summer. When the craft brewers come out with their summer beers, they all tend to be similar… wheat ales, hefeweizens, Belgian wits, and, god forbid you actually buy into this, light beer (which isn’t craft, but is big in the summer). Dogfish Head decided to take a different approach and come up with a very different beer. That’s how they ended up with Festina Pêche, a Berliner weissbier.
The beer is very pale yellowy color and very cloudy (it’s still a wheat beer, after all). The looks is like your average summer beer, though maybe a bit more yellow than you’re used to. The smell is average, perhaps a bit of a lemon/fruity tartness, but it still seems like your average summer beer.
The taste, however, is nothing like your average summer beer. Berliners tend to be a bit tart and will make you pucker a bit, but so can a nice glass of fresh lemonade (so long as you don’t add a ton of sugar to it). This beer is no different. It’s brewed with peaches (hence the name) and there is a slight peachy flavor to it. At first sip, it starts off tasting like your average summer beer… until it hits the back of your throat and starts to go down. That’s when the tart punch hits you. It’s not like those sour candies you used to dare your friends to try without puckering or tearing up… it’s more of a refreshing taste to it. There’s definitely some malty sweetness at the beginning of the sip, but that turns into a fruity tartness at the end of the sip. It’s a perfect balance. Being a good summer beer, it’s not heavy, but it’s also not highly carbonated (though you can notice the carbonation).
All in all, this is a great summer beer with a twist. This would make for a great beer on a hot summer afternoon after mowing the lawn or after a long day on the water. I’m not normally a fan of most summer beers (as I’m not a huge fan of wheat beers), but I do like this one. Do yourself a favor… it’s still hot out. Find a package store that sells this and buy a 6 pack (or if you’re store sells singles, try a single). It’s worth it.