While working on some last minute French homework this evening, we decided to open up this gem that I purchased a few weeks prior. If you aren’t familiar with Ovila, they are from the Abbey of New Clairvaux here in Northern California, and collaborate with Sierra Nevada Brewing Company to create Belgian style ales, with the right amount of California craft brewing in it as well. Currently, they are brewing three styles: golden, dubbel, and a barrel-aged quad(!). I recently had the dubbel for the first time a few weeks ago, and was incredibly impressed. I was excited when I found their golden ale at a little liquor store in a town 30 minutes away from home. Their golden ale is advertised as high pressure, and that is definitely noticeable while uncorking with a loud POP! Upon pouring, it has a similar carbonation to champagne with very foamy head that laces the glass with time. It tastes similar to other Belgian golden styles, with notes of citrus, pine, malts, and grains; however, I also feel it is a little smokier than other goldens that I’ve had recently. A nice example of the California craft coming into play in this beer!
I highly recommend Ovila ales to anyone who already loves Belgian-stlye ales, and are looking to explore further and beyond the Belgian standards, and more into the craft brewing niche. But really, I would recommend this to anyone! It’s a little harder to find in my small town, so I can imagine it would be harder to find beyond Northern California..but if you can get your hands on a bottle, or four, go for it! It’s a great beer.