If you’re a pickle hater, leave now.
Left Nut Brewing Co.’s Afternoon Dillight packs a pickled punch that only brine worshipers will appreciate.
Brewery: Left Nut Brewing Co.
Alcohol by volume: 4.7%
Style: Dill pickle gose
Bottom line: A briney, refreshing punch of pickle
It doesn’t need a green hue to express its pickled personality. Afternoon Dillight smells of unadulterated pickles and hits your tastebuds with an explosion of dill with just a bit of garlic. To my surprise, the pickle flavor didn’t overshadow the malt characteristics of the beer. The briney notes fade out into a smooth wheaty taste.
Rick Foote, brewer at Left Nut, said the beer’s recipe came from Robert Walden, the president of the local homebrewing club, Chicken City Ale Raisers.
“We share beers at meetings and critique members beers, and we thought it was quite good,” Foote said. “It’s a great hot weather beer — very refreshing and light on the palate.”
Collaborating with Walden to make it on a bigger scale, Foote added pickling spice to the boil and used empty pickle buckets — adding to the up-front pickle flavor of the brew — for the secondary fermentation.
Instead of dry-hopping the beer, which is the process of adding hops after the wort has cooled, Foote said he “dry-picked” it.
Each 5-gallon bucket received a 16-ounce jar of strained dill pickles slices.
Walden said he felt inspired to make a pickle beer after talking with fellow homebrewers about what would go well with a gose — a sour beer brewed with salt and coriander.
“They’re already sour and salty, almost like a pickle,” he said. “I came back home and thought, ‘You know what? I’m going to make it.’”
Soon after brewing the pickle gose, Walden entered his beer in the Suwanee Beer Fest and won a medal for it.
“It was one of the most talked about beers at the Suwanee Beer Fest,” he said. “People either love it or hate it.”
I happen to be on the positive end of that spectrum. As a fan of all things funky and pickled, the beer offered quite the “afternoon delight” to my tastebuds. It’s refreshing, which I didn’t expect, and not overwhelming.
Those interested in picking this pickle can find it on tap at Left Nut, which is located at 2100 Atlanta Highway in Gainesville.