This American blonde ale from Nickel Brook Brewing Co. in Burlington, Ontario is slightly hazy, golden-amber in colour and yields a large and spongy white head that has good retention as a rocky cap before receding to a thick collar. Cause & Effect has a hop-forward smell, with grapefruit and tangerine joined by herbal, grassy, piny and peppery aromas. A light blend of English and German malt creates warm, honey and caramel notes that serve as an inviting backdrop for the bright hop characteristics.
The taste of Cause & Effect is hop-forward and quite crisp, but certainly not overbearing. Stone fruit, juicy tropical fruit and grapefruit flavours are accented by an earthy note, while the malts create an air of darkened (but not quite burnt) toast. The ale has a medium body and is mildly carbonated. The finish is dry, earthy and mildly bitter while a hint of pepper lingers on the tongue.
Town & Country Blonde Ale from Dominion City Brewing Company in Ottawa, Ontario pours a clear golden colour and has a small white head that dissipates in a hurry, leaving a stringy collar behind. The American-style ale smells of fresh barley, with a light floral or perfume note, one of dry apricot and a honey-like sweetness that has a bit of a maple edge. I also got a faint vegetal whiff that reminded me of green peas.
The taste of Town & Country Blonde Ale is fairly sweet and carries the same apricot/stone fruit character as the smell. The grainy body is fantastic and fresh tasting, while restrained hopping lends a grassy bitterness and soft lemon pith tone to the finish. The aftertaste is quite clean, with some residual grain flavours. A medium body and mild carbonation level make this ale feel hearty, yet easygoing.
This American blonde ale from Big Rig Brewery in Ottawa, Ontario is a clear and bright golden colour. Its sizable, frothy white head has good retention and settles as a thin collar and cap while leaving small spots of lace behind. Big Rig Gold carries aromas of toasted wheat, minerals, earth, grasses and honey, with mild notes of white grape and perfume.
Big Rig Gold has a fairly mild taste that is somewhat sweet at first, with an earthy and dry body that has a freshly milled grain flavour and a hint of green apple. The ale has a medium body, an ample amount of fine carbonation and some yeasty life on the tongue. There is a very minor, but dirty astringency found in the finish, though the aftertaste is mainly crisp with subtle grain and yeast flavours.
This American Pale ale from Labatt Brewing Company (Anheuser-Busch InBev) pours a clear golden colour with a medium-sized, creamy white head that is retained as a thin collar without leaving any lacing. Labatt 50 smells mainly of corn and grass, with a mild apple or white grape fruitiness and a touch of floral hops.
Labatt 50 has a grainy, yeasty taste that strikes me as more lager-like than that of an ale, with a distinctive note of corn and subtle bitter and mineral qualities. This ale is medium-bodied with plenty of fine carbonation. Earthy and creamy sensations are felt on the tongue along with a very light oiliness. The finish is dry with soft metallic and earthy notes in the aftertaste.
This American blonde ale from the Kichesippi Beer Company in Ottawa, Ontario pours a deep and clear golden yellow colour with a small white collar of a head that gets retained well and leaves some spotty lacing. Freshly cut grains and toasted light malts dominate the aroma of Kichesippi Natural Blonde and are accented by a soft, honey-like sweetness as well as a subtle fruit character.
Kichesippi Natural Blonde has a surprisingly rich and balanced taste for its style. The toasted malts and honey sweetness are joined by notes of floral and soapy hops, a hint of berry juice and a good wallop of bitterness comes through in the finish. Also somewhat surprising is the hearty, bready mouthfeel; though a medium-heavy carbonation eases the beer over the tongue. The aftertaste has a certain syrupy sweetness to it, but then fades away crisply and cleanly.