Brew Review – Cosmic Bandido 2.0 by Tripping Animals and Great Notion @trippinganimals @greatnotionpdx

Some brewers I know hate collaborations. Others thrive on them.

Me, I can take it or leave it as long as the beer is good.

My thing with them is how the collaboration is done. Is this a true partnership between the two? Or is this something that was already on the schedule, then someone else came by, took pictures of them throwing hops into the tank, put them on social media, go your separate ways.

Then, of course, there is marketing the beer. How do you label it, how do you design it, who really takes ownership of this? It was an interesting question posed by my can of Cosmic Bandido 2.0 (Sour Ale, 6% ABV).

Sure, it’s Tripping Animals brewing, and if you look at the can, at first glance it seems very much their signature style. But when you take a look a little bit closer, there is some decidedly un-South Florida imagery on there. A lot of trees, both standing and cut down, and what looks to be a raccoon? Fox? Puffy angry wolf-dog hybrid?

Not sure. But in the information, you can see that this particular beer is a collaboration between Tripping Animals and Portland Oregon’s Great Notion Brewing. Now the label art makes a little bit more sense as to why a flamingo is fighting a wolfhound in space. Or gopher. Or German Shepard.

The ingredients for the beer make a little bit more sense since the first adjunct listed is Marionberry. Not really known in Florida, but quite ubiquitous in the Pacific Northwest. Sure, Tripping Animals brought the Florida with key lime and orange, and the vanilla and marshmallow are removed a bit from either location.

All things considered, the Marionberry is the star of the show. That is immediately evident in the color, pouring the most outrageous vibrant burgundy I’ve ever seen in a beer. The aroma interestingly enough tends to favor the orange and the key lime a bit more. You get those bright citric acid notes with everything else little bit farther back.

The flavor, after you have poured a slightly sludgy beer into your glass and gotten all the little bits out, doesn’t dissapoint. The Marionberry is first. It’s got a bright, tart flavor, a little bit sour, going in with a sweetness and tartness that is close to but not all the way into raspberry territory.

If you’ve never had marionberry, go for it. It’s a taste treat.

That happens for a second, then the key lime and orange step forward, harmoniously and equally blended; a solid partnership. After that is the vanilla and the marshmallow, bringing a slightly more muted, slightly more candy quality to the beer. In all of this is a great sweet tartness, somewhat sour, but with enough additional flavors to where the beer ends up being more well-rounded.

I’m happy to see a collaboration like this, one that showcases agriculture in multiple regions of the country, and not just an Instagram post. My hope is to see more collaborations like this in the future, and I will patiently await for their arrival.

In the meantime, I need to get some more Marionberry jam.

Drink Florida Craft,


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