Brewery: Tempel Brygghus
This is the second beer we have tried in the beer club that comes from Tempel Brygghus. The first, their rhubarb sour collaboration with Bryggverket went down very well so I thought I would choose one that is purely from Tempel. The name Gehenna is actually a biblical reference to a cursed city where Judah kings used to burn their children alive as sacrifices. Any beer with a giant skull on the can and named after a city of religious sacrifice had to be included in the Halloween tasting.
I must reference the artwork first as it is quite beautiful. The can is really pretty and catches the eye immediately. When i finally stopped admiring it and opened the can, it poured with a very cloudy light straw colour. The head was big, fluffy and continued for a fair amount of time. It was hard to tell exactly how carbonated it was before tasting it due to the cloudy hue. One whiff of this and it was very evident that this was a sour beer. Massive notes of gooseberry and citrus swept up the nostril, bring the senses to life. My initial reaction was “holy shit, that’s proper sour”. Upon the first sip I realised this is a perfect palate cleanser to any beer you had before. Big lemon hits pound the tongue, wringing every last drop of saliva from the mouth. A slight disinfectant dishcloth taste was noted, which was maybe due to the dry hopping. It felt like the carbonation was low to medium, with small bubbles circulating the mouth. The hops are there but they take a big backseat to the acidic lemon and gooseberry. It grew on me as I drank more as my taste buds became more acclimatised to the beer. The aftertaste was rather short and sharp.
I liked this beer but I felt it was maybe a bit flat in its taste profile. I wanted a bit more range instead of it being so two-dimensional. Even though it was enjoyable, I think it’s a “one and done” beer rather than a brand I could drink all night. Anymore than one and it feels like the acidity might start melting the enamel off my teeth. I will go back and try this again though, maybe in the summer.