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Fat Tire Amber Ale (22 oz.)

Item Purchased: Fat Tire New Belgium Amber Ale (22 oz.)
Location Purchased: Lush Wine And Spirits / 1306 S. Halsted / Chicago, IL
Price: $3.50 + tax

Review: I’ve tried this new-ish beer several times since its debut in the Chicagoland area, however, this is the first time I have purchased one all for my lonesome as an after-work libation to take the edge off.

Fat Tire seemed to just appear from out of nowhere earlier this year. It actually appeared from out of Fort Collins, Colorado’s New Belgium Brewery. I don’t know a whole lot about the brewery itself, but the bottles of this fine beer say that they are “wind-powered,” which explains why all of the local Whole Foods stores builds Tom-Hanks-in--sized forts out of cases of it. I think it’s great that the production of this lovely beverage is powered by a renewable energy source. If only all of our vices, simple pleasures, conveniences and inebriating substances could claim this.

The beer itself is complex, but not overwhelmingly so. Instead of knocking the drinker’s tastebuds with a one-two of spices and hops, Fat Tire relies on balance and blending. Upon first sniff of this aromatic beer, I was fondly reminded of my childhood rides along Milwaukee’s Highway 43, near both the Miller and Sprecher breweries. Hops is in the air and it either makes you thirsty or makes you roll your window up. To be honest, I always hated being in the eye of that smell storm at the time, but looking back, my childhood comes alive once again. When I first sipped Fat Tire, I immediately thought of Samuel Smith’s Nut Brown Ale. Almost as quickly, the blend of flavors swirling in my mouth brought to mind an October ale, then a Summertime or wheat beer and finally, it finishes with an amber crispness. This beer’s allure is in it’s balance and appeal to almost every type of beer lover.

I’m not sure why New Belgium brewery chose to only offer Chicago the 22 oz. sized bottles of it’s great beer, but it seems to work. You can hardly walk a block in this city without seeing a neon red bicycle staring you in the face. At an average of $6.00-$7.00 a bottle in most restaurants and bars, even the most stingy PBR hipster will shell out every once in a while for a bottle this size. I couldn’t believe that a wine shop offers this beverage for under $4.00. Aren’t wine shops supposed to be expensive and intimidating? Not Lush Wine And Spirits. With their knowledgeable and friendly staff (not to mention fair prices), Lush is worth a trek to the annoyingly sterile area just south of UIC.

$3.50 for a bottle of Fat Tire isn’t the cheapest I’ve seen, but for a joint that is on my way home from work… I’ll happily take it.

Rating: 4.75 / 5

One Response to “Fat Tire Amber Ale (22 oz.)”

  1. Frank Says:

    Can anyone tell me where I can possibly get Fat Tire Amber Ale in Pennsylvania, preferably the PHiladelphia area. I have someone picking some up for me on the way back from a drive out west.

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