If you were to take a poll of agricultural crops that scream Tropical, you might get coconut relatively high on the list.
Number one should be orange, though.
Take a poll of crops that scream Sanford, and number one should, historically, be celery. There’s a history there I definitely need to research.
This doesn’t mean Sanford breweries aren’t allowed to use anything but our stringy vegetable friend (something I would love to see). It’s maybe a little bit more representational of central florida than the coconut.
A coconut is a bit more Hawaiian, and the hula girl on the label art of Paradiso Coconut Ale (Golden Ale, 5.5% ABV, 29 IBU) from Sanford-based Wops Hops, shows the brewery and I are right in line.
Heck, I used to have a dancing hula girl on my car’s dashboard that looked just like that one. It melted and cut her in half. I guess cheap glue isn’t meant to last in the Florida sun.
But here we are, hula girl and coconut beer in hand. I was actually happy to see Wops Hops coming out with a can, contract brewed over at Suncreek Brewing in Clermont, themselves no stranger to the blog themselves. What they released is a beautifully sunny golden ale, bright golden in color and crystal clear, with the rather fun aroma that touches on suntan lotion.
By suntan lotion, I mean an summery coconut pineapple aroma mixed in with some faint notions of orange and pineapple upside-down cake.
The flavor, however, belongs to the coconut. It’s faint on the first sip, but as it lingers longer, that mellow sweetness really comes through. Let the beer sit for a little while, and that flavor only becomes stronger. Put it on a mellow malt build with a faint touch of earthy hops, and you have a very tropical, very Hawaiian-feeling beer.
Does this mean Sanford is going to start growing coconuts? Not sure. They are a heck of a lot more interesting than celery, though.
No insult to celery, of course.
Drink Florida Craft,
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