Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale is a fruit beer made with fresh yuzu, or Japanese citrus. If you’ve never heard of a yuzu before, imagine a grapefruit that has been shrunk in size by a half but still contains the potent acidity of the regular sized one. The taste of yuzu I guess, is similar to a grapefruit that has been injected with some mandarin or satsuma flavours too. Yuzu are often added whole to baths to impart a relaxing citrus aroma during the harvesting season, but Harvestmoon Brewery took a different approach and put a few in this Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale. It has an abv of 4.5% and has been a seasonal beer in the past.
Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale Aroma and Taste
Yuzu is a funny old fruit. Its flavours impart well with pepper, and the rinds work well as a jam, though its potent and distinctive flavour can be harsh on the palate. It also seems to be a highly-regarded fruit though I am yet to see anyone tucking into one as a snack or a meal. And the smell can be recognised from a mile away, especially when local onsens and sentos start throwing in the cut yuzus in the baths.
Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale has managed to bottle that essence of yuzu extremely well. So much so, that when the bottle was opened, the overpowering smell of yuzu smacked me around the head and almost burnt out my nostril hair. A lovely image, I’m sure. Somewhere in the mix was some maltish content, perhaps some caramel tones but I couldn’t be sure as the yuzu power was so strong it reminded of my formative teenage years and the idea of Lynx/Axe deodorant being a pheromone for the opposite sex. The colour was far darker than I expected- I thought it would be something bordering a light, golden colour, but Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale was a dark amber colour with a minimal amount of head.
With the amount of yuzu that was stuffed (it seems) into the bottle, the body also packed a large punch of yuzu taste on a par with the aroma. There really was no mistaking that Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale had been made with a lot – and I can not emphasise that enough – of yuzu. The caramel malts, though, were stronger in the body than the aroma; however, the unbalanced yuzu flavours really just make this beer a large mess. The yuzu aftertaste overpowered everything going on in this beer.
Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale One Line Review
If you like yuzu, and I mean really like yuzu, then Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale would be a great choice. Else, give it a wide berth and just sit in the bath with yuzu instead.
Where to Buy Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale
Harvestmoon Yuzu Ale is a limited release beer. I got my bottle from Craftbeers.jp though at the time of writing, it had gone out of stock.