Revolver’s Blood & Honey Offshoot, Sangre y Miel Es Muy Perfecto.

Welcome to On Tap! Each week in this recurring feature, we’ll take an in-depth look at one of the many beers now available in the suddenly crowded North Texas brew scene. The goal here is to look at these area beers without our local goggles on and to wonder aloud, “Is this beer good or do I just like it because it’s local?” Should be a fun experiment, no? Cheers to that!

This week, we sipped on Revolver Brewing ‘s Sangre y Miel.

 

Fast Facts on Revolver Brewing Sangre y Miel.
Style: American Wild Ale.
ABV: 7.75 percent.
International Bitterness Units (IBUs): 20.
Color: Deep Straw.
Availability: Limited.

Overview.
Did you know that Revolver Brewing is the largest self-distributing brewery in Texas? Wow, I had no idea! Since this is not a treatise on the good ol’ boys network, I will shy away from spending too much time talking about the love-hate relationship some breweries have with the distribution tier of the three-tier system. But just know that, for many-a-brewer, getting in bed with a distributor is seen as a necessary evil for market expansion and logistics. It’s getting lonely up here on this soap box, though, so I will step down now.

Back to the beer: Revolver’s flagship brew, Blood & Honey, probably provides the largest chunk of the brewery’s revenue. If you haven’t had Blood & Honey, chances are that you’re either new to DFW or you have been living under a rock. While I don’t really go seek out Blood & Honey on the regular, I do have an immense respect for it. It’s just a solid, all-around kickass craft gateway beer. Blue Moon? No, thank you. I’ll take a Blood & Honey.

On the other hand, there’s Sangre y Miel, which translates to Blood & Honey en Espanol and is Revolver’s first foray in to American Wild Ale territory. Its Revolver’s first sour, and the brewery has knocked it out of the park. Sangre y Miel is an excellent beer, in every sense.

Let’s take a closer look at the how and why.

 

Background on American Wild Ale.
The American Wild Ale style is a lovely style that is quickly gaining popularity. I think we will reach peak-barrel soon, and the demand for barrels will go back to its normal state. But, until then, more and more breweries are making some excellent beers with fun experiments. For a primer on this particular sour style, check out our review on Deep Ellum’s Play Date and/or Collective’s Petite Golden Sour. As with DEBC’s Play Date, which builds on Dallas Blonde, Revolver starts out Sangre y Miel with its already kickass Blood & Honey. Then it ages it in Chardonnay barrels for over a year. And here’s where the fun part comes in: According to my source at Revolver, this is a spontaneous fermentation situation.

Appearance.
The appearance is on point for Sangre y Miel. It’s a somewhat clear beer even after its time in the barrel; it’s as clear, or clearer, than its base beer. There is a thin layer of head apparent just as my favorite bartender at Goodfriend hands me this pour. But it fades quickly and I’m left with a flat-looking beer. It is important to note here that some wild yeast like Lactobacillus can contribute to a lack of head, so this aspect is not totally unexpected at all.

Aroma.
Sangre y Miel starts with a tart, almost peppery whiff of lemon. After the citrus, a super clean sour aroma hits my nose. In my somewhat limited education on the sour style, I have found that there are sort of two major styles of sour — Lactobacillus (Lacto) and Brettanomyces (Brett). And if I had to guess, I would guess that this super clean aroma is a byproduct of Brett.

 

Flavor.
It’s clean. It’s funky. How can those two things go together? Let me explain. Typically, the more tart types of sours are brewed with Lactobacillus, thus creating a puckeringly-sour situation. But I don’t get that with Sangre y Miel. It’s sour, no doubt, but it’s a clean, inviting tartness that dances across my palate — and it doesn’t leave my face crinkled up like some sours do, either. There is also just the tiniest hint of more of a wild barnyard. Let me emphasize this: It’s the tiniest hint. Because this is a spontaneous secondary fermentation in the barrel, Revolver just let whatever happen, well, happen. So it’s probably a mix of a bunch of different wild yeasts and bacteria at play here. Whatever the ratio is, it works, and it is excellent. Other flavors I get involve a bright lemon, along with a dry, clean sense on my palate. I think maybe some ghost of chardonnay past has made its way in to this beer, and it adds a layer of dryness and complexity to the flavor. The sweetness I get with Blood & Honey has finished off in to a dry, super crisp finish.

Mouthfeel.
The mouthfeel is on point with Sangre y Miel. There is a biting kick of carbonation, but it’s certainly not over-carbonated like some caged and corked, bottle-conditioned sours you may be more accustomed to. The beer is incredibly smooth for its 7.7 percent ABV. The sour notes and complex flavors disguise the alcohol excellently. Sangre y Miel has a little bit higher ABV compared to the other DFW sours in this same category, but lacks some of the thinness that these beers have. The beer finishes clean and crisp, and I get very little residual sugar.

Overall Impression.
This beer is excellent. Because it’s a sour, there is a rather wide latitude on flavor profile. It is a bit hoppier than what I normally see from sour beers, but it is super-balanced. Both the aroma and flavor is complex and delicate at the same time. The finish is clean and crisp. Also, unlike some other aged sours, this beer is unusually affordable for what it is. I just drank two pours while writing this review, and I could stay here and have another two without wanting to switch it up. No pucker, no heartburn, just clean complex flavor. This beer obviously doesn’t have the revenue-generating, market-grabbing power that Blood & Honey has, nor the logistical capability to be made on the regular. It’s a barrel-aged beer, after all.

Score.
On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d give Revolver Sangre y Miel a 10.

 

What’s happening in the area brew scene?
• Thursday, May, 5. Trompo de Mayo at Four Corners.
• Saturday, May, 7. Dank Daze at Cedar Creek Brewery.
• Saturday, May, 7. One-Year Anniversary at Four Bullets.
• Saturday, May, 7. One-Year Anniversary at TUPPs.
• Saturday, May, 7. Adult Field Day at Martin House.
• Sunday, May, 15. Brew Riot at Bishop Arts.
• Saturday, May, 21. North Texas Firkin Fest at Globe Life Park.
• Saturday, June 11. Untapped: Fort Worth at Panther Island Pavilion.
• Saturday, June 18. Best Little Brew Fest In Texas at Old Town Lewisville.

Previous On Tap Reviews:
Peticolas’ Royal Scandal: 10.
Community’s Mosaic IPA: 10.
Peticolas’ Velvet Hammer: 10.
Community’s Barrel-Aged Legion: 10.
Community’s Legion: 10.
Deep Ellum’s Barrel Aged Four Swords: 9.5.
Lakewood’s Saint Dymphna: 9.5.
Peticolas’ Lost Epic: 9.5.
Community’s Ascension Porter: 9.5.
Lakewood’s Temptress: 9.5.
Lakewood’s Goatman: 9.5.
Community’s Public Ale: 9.5.
Peticolas’ Thrilla in Brazilla: 9.5.
On Rotation’s Jalapeno Saison: 9.
Woodcreek’s Bourbon Barrel Bock: 9.
Lakewood’s Wild Manimal: 9.
Revolver’s Blood & Honey: 9.
Martin House’s Imperial Texan: 9.
Community’s Trinity Tripel: 9.
Peticolas’ Irish Goodbye: 9.
Four Corners’ Block Party Porter: 9.
Cedar Creek’s Belgian Dubbel: 9.
Peticolas’ Ghost Of Alfred Brown: 8.5.
Deep Ellum’s Easy Peasy IPA: 8.5.
Deep Ellum’s Oak Cliff Coffee Ale: 8.5.
Lakewood’s Rock Ryder: 8.5.
Rahr’s Bourbon Barrel Aged Winter Warmer: 8.5.
Lakewood’s Raspberry Temptress: 8.5.
Lakewood’s On Call: 8.
Oak Highlands’ Golden Mustache: 8.
903 Brewers’ Crackin’ Up: 8.
Deep Ellum’s Play Date: 8.
Rahr & Sons Brewing Company’s 11th Anniversary Russian Imperial Stout: 8.
Bitter Sisters’ Belgian Tripel: 8.
Noble Rey’s SteamPunk: 8.
903 Brewers’ Citra On Top: 8.
Bitter Sisters’ Hissy Fit: 8.
BrainDead’s Gritz: 8.
Community’s Barrel-Aged Inspiration : 8.
Cedar Creek’s Fisticuffs: 8.
Lakewood’s Punkel: 8.
Four Corners’ El Chingon IPA: 8.
Martin House’s Day Break: 8.
Deep Ellum’s GOURDzilla: 8.
Peticolas’ The Duke (Aged 12 Months): 8.
Deep Ellum’s Pale Ale: 8.
Revolver’s Bock: 8.
903 Brewers’ Sasquatch: 8.
Peticolas’ Wintervention: 8.
Armadillo Ale Works’ Brunch Money: 8.
Martin House’s Salsa Verde: 8.
Cedar Creek’s Spinning Mule Robust Porter: 8.
Lakewood’s Holiday Bonus: 8.
Lakewood’s Hop Trapp: 8.
Bitter Sisters’ Knock Out: 7.5.
Four Corners’ Notorious O.A.T.: 7.5.
Noble Rey Golden Rey With Raspberries and Ginger: 7.5.
On Rotation Saved By The Belma: 7.5.
True Vine’s Unicorn’s Revenge: 7.5.
Deep Ellum’s Hop Seeker: 7.5.
Four Corners’ El Super Bee: 7.5.
Lakewood’s Hopochondria: 7.5.
Three Nations GPA: 7.5.
Martin House’s Rubberneck Red: 7.5.
Lakewood’s Antigoon’s Revenge: 7.5.
Community’s Texas Pils: 7.5.
Lakewood’s Zomer Pils: 7.5.
Cedar Creek’s Dankosaurus: 7.5.
TUPPS Brewery’ Northbound 75: 7.
Rahr & Sons’ Iron Joe: 7.
BrainDead’s I Like Harvey IPA: 7.
Martin House’s Turtle Power: 7.
Collective’s Petite Golden Sour: 7.
Shannon’s Chocolate Stout: 7.
BrainDead’s Red Ale: 7.
Community’s Razzy Raspberry Witbier: 7.
Martin House’s Gateway Blonde Ale: 7.
Bearded Eel’s Purple Unicorn: 7.
Noble Rey’s Off The Leash: 7.
Shannon Brewing Company’s Irish Red: 7.
Texas Ale Project’s Somethin’ Shady: 7.
Deep Ellum IPA: 7.
Cedar Creek’s The Lawn Ranger: 7.
Martin House Brewing Company’s Cellarman’s Reserve IPA (Amarillo).: 7.
Lakewood’s Till & Toil: 7.
903 Brewers’ The Chosen One: 7.
903 Brewers’ Sugar On Top: 7.
Martin House’s Gateway XPA: 7.
Armadillo Ale Work’s Quakertown Stout: 7.
Revolver’s High Brass: 7.
Community’s Pale Ale: 7.
Oak Highlands’ Chump Change: 7.
Martin House’s River House: 7.
Grapevine Craft Brewery’s Sir William’s Brown Ale: 7.
Community’s Funnel Cake Ale: 7.
Audacity’s Boss Raptor IPA: 7.
Collective Brewing Project’s Mom Azacca: 6.5.
Four Corners’ La Lechuza: 6.5.
Revolver’s Ironhead IPA: 6.5.
903 Brewers’ Trot Line: 6.5.
Peticolas’ Operation Collaboration: 6.5.
Grapevine Craft Brewery’s Nightwatch: 6.5.
Peticolas’ The Duke: 6.5.
Deep Ellum’s Double Brown Stout : 6.5.
Nine Bands’ Cactus Cat: 6.
Martin House’s Kafkaesque: 6.
TUPPS’ Cotton Mill Gold: 6.
Rabbit Hole’s Tweedleyum: 6.
Rabbit Hole’s Off With Your Red: 6.
Cedar Creek’s Elliott’s Phoned Home Pale Ale: 6
Grapevine Craft Brewery’s Lakefire: 6
Armadillo Ale Works’ WunderMelon: 6
Deep Ellum Pale Ale: 6
Lakewood’s La Dame Du Lac: 5.5.
Martin House’s Mind On My Money: 5.
903 Brewers’ The Land Of Milk And Honey: 5.
Deep Ellum’s Numb Comfort: 5.
Four Bullets’ Black Jack Brown: 4.5.
Four Corners Heart O’ Texas: 4.
Audacity’s Sunset Boulevard: 4.
Shannon Brewing Company’s IPA: 4.
Grapevine’s Monarch: 4.
Twin Peaks’ Dirty Blonde: 3.
Franconia Wheat: 3.
Miller Lite: 1.

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