Ommegang Ommegeddon

Laurie from joins the Lost in the Beer Aisle family tonight as a new guest reviewer. This post is a reciprocal review as I recently reviewed Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti for her site. Many thanks to Laurie for the review. Stay tuned to LIBA for more from Laurie…specifically a beer brainstorm!

I Want the Funk, Give up the Funk!

I just love Parliament. But instead of telling you the fantastic story of how I got on stage with George Clinton and the Parliament/Funkadelic crew (Yeah, I did!), I wanna talk about a beer I have been dying to try for awhile,Ommegang’s Ommegeddon.

With a name like that, an image of a nuclear bomb mushroom cloud, and the byline Funkhouse Ale with Brettanomyces, it literally screamed my name from the shelves. So expectations ran high for a funk-filled Sunday when I opened this guy…

Ommegang Ommegeddon, Cooperstown, NY: 8% ABV: The beer poured out a nice apricot color, with an interesting change in color and opacity. The opposite of wine, the beer was lighter at the base, and the intensity increased as you moved up the glass toward the rim. Hmm. Could that be the disruption of yeast particles in the pour, yet to settle back to the bottom?

The first aromas that greet your nose are of apricot and ripe papaya peel, not the flesh…I like this, as skin gives a more subtle and sometimes greener version of the fleshiness of the fruit.

Then, mingled with a perfume of almost sandalwood, musky aromas (hello brett) arise with bursts of citrus, like someone has just squeezed a wedge and a bit hit you in the face. And then it is gone and that musk is back.

As it warms, honey notes emerge, not dark sweet honey, but rather a more herbal, fruit based honeys. (Think sage or grapefruit honey) While there are definite yeasty notes intermingled with some brett funk, the effect is quite milder than anticipated.

Again, with a name like Ommegeddon and the byline Funkhouse Ale, you expect a literal explosion of brett, with the needle of the funk meter going off the scale, like the over-stressed radiation monitors after a nuclear fallout…. Not so much. One might say, maybe my funk meter is off. And after a recent run-in with Mikkeller’s It’s Alright (not It’s Alive),which was literally the smell of a horses behind while standing in a stable stall with manure, I might agree with you. It was insane.

But I would have to retort, and say, no way Jose′. I have a lot of experience with Brett in my years in the wine business. I love the little rocket bugs! My favorite wines in the world are those from Bordeaux and the Rhone Valley with that glorious meaty, spicy,barnyard, hay, horse saddle aroma. So I’m pretty sure my funk meter is on point. And this beer barely tipped the scales for me….

That being said, although Ommegeddon wasn’t as bretty as I expected or hoped, I did enjoy it. I thought it was well-balanced, with some nice aromatic aspects, and it was an easy-sipper for my first Sunday beer. Give it a try for sure, especially if you are an Ommegang fan, just don’t expect George Clinton to be asking you to dance with him.

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Author: Joshua Dion

I write about beer in an un-intimidating way, welcoming beer lovers of all experience levels.

5 thoughts on “Ommegang Ommegeddon”

  1. I recently reviewed batch #4 of Ommegeddon at my blog and was similarly let down on the funk meter. It was an interesting and good drink, but not the Brett forward funk machine that I recalled from Batch #1 and #3. Hopefully some aging will change that, but I don't know, seems a stretch.

    Check out Victory's Wild Devil Ale if you can. 100% Brett fermented version of their Hop Devil IPA. Funk house delight.

  2. Great review!

    One thing I've been debating as of late is all of the crazy labels that one sees when picking out a craft beer. Sometimes you see something that is so out of whack, so crazy, or so disgusting that you may not even pick up the beer…or it might make you curious enough to try it. On the other hand you may find a nice, subtle, elegant message appeals to you on any given night.

    So with this brew having crazy, mushroom shaped cloud, I can only imagine that was part of the draw. Was that the only thing? Have you ever made a decision to buy a beer strictly based upon the image on the front and nothing else?

    I'm just curious!

    Again, great review and I'm with Lost, what the heck is this "Brett" thing all about?

    Mike's Brew Review

  3. Brett is a wild form of yeast (actual name is Brettanomyces, Brett it is called for short). It tends to create some very distinct and unusual flavors. That is what they talk about when they say "funk". It isn't for everyone, but it can be good in certain beers. I am not a huge fan myself. It is worth trying though, although be careful if you have a sensitive stomach, as I have found that it can bother it.

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