Gruit is a style of beer that interests me quite a bit, both because of its contemporary rarity as well as its historical importance. Today I noticed that the latest Lips of Faith offering from New Belgium Brewing Company was simply named Gruit, so I quickly grabbed that bottle to see their take on the style. Gruit is basically any beer that is brewed with herbs instead of hops (or very small amounts of hops). New Belgium Gruit weighs in with 6.66% Alcohol By Volume.
New Beglium Gruit is a crystal clear, pale golden colored beer, sporting a large, bubbly off-white head. Plenty of lacing remains behind on the glass.
The nose has both fruity and spicy notes, with clove, pepper and other herbal notes standing out.
The taste is quite layered, with sweet pale malt starting things off, lots of earthy, herbal, grassy and floral notes, with a bit of spicy yeast notes in the background. The mouth is medium bodied and moderately carbonated.
Gruit is a style of beer that I’ve been interested in brewing since reading Sacred Herbal and Healing Beers by Stephen Buhner, and now seeing one that is as well executed as New Belgium Gruit, my interest is piqued even more. They have used a bunch of herbs that aren’t commonly found in beer these days, and crafted something that is familiar to modern craft beer drinkers. Worth checking out both as a quality beer and as a nice representation of a style rarely seen these days.
New Belgium Gruit : B+
New Belgium Gruit Specs
Malts: Pale, Munich, Maris Otter, Wheat, Oats
Herbs: Horehound, Bog Myrtle, Yarrow, Wormwood, Elderflowers
Beer Reviews by Prof Sudz