Coffee and beer, two of America’s favorite beverages, have a long history together. Stouts, brown and ales and even IPAs have all been subjected to coffee infusions. But while coffee is king stateside, tea takes the crown on a global scale. Brewers have been taking notice and adding tea to their beers to bump up the aromatics or refreshment factor.
One of these breweries is Three Taverns Craft Brewery in Decatur, Georgia. Part of its Sour Asylum series of kettle soured ales, Lord Grey is a sour ale made with Earl Grey. The beer was initially created as a collaboration with The Porter Beer Bar.
The eye-catching label depicts a regal, mustachioed man with an orange slice for an eye. Out of the superbly illustrated can, the beer pours a hazy gold with a cloudy appearance. The first sniff is full of the light, earthy, black tea notes with some zesty Bergamot citrus in it, not unlike your favorite bottled iced tea.
While not necessarily sour, the first sip is a tart slap to the mouth followed by lemony orange and more tang, plus some light earthiness. It walks the line between tart and tea, with neither dominating but both existing in harmony. It’s refreshing and thirst-quenching, encouraging you to take you to take another sip. And before you know it, your glass is empty and all you’re left with is the memories.
With 5% ABV, Lord Grey is a sessionable beer, perfect for warm weather. The combination of black tea and citrus give it an Arnold Palmer vibe. One might say it’s like summertime in a glass without all those pesky allergies.