Earlier tonight I served as a volunteer at the Arts Fest (or whatever it is officially called now; it has always been the Arts Fest to me). What did I do? Serve beer in the beverage garden, of course! I will tell you what — I have never opened that many beer cans in such a short time in my life. The tender skin beneath the nails on my left index and middle fingers is pretty sore.
Thankfully, the beer of the weekend — Fresh Start, brewed by the Confluence Brewing Company of Des Moines, Iowa — has a twist-off cap.
Fresh Start pours a hazy, medium amber. Two fingers of fluffy, eggshell-colored head dissipates slowly. Earthy hops and citrus dominate the aroma, which is a touch muted. Pale malts and some light caramel are also noticeable. The flavor mostly mirrors the smell, but the flavors and bitterness are much more robust and prominent. Earthy hops and light citrus are most noticeable. Pale malt and a little caramel provide a nice balance. I do not think this beer is fresh, but it is still pretty good.
Fun facts about Fresh Start:
•Style: Pale lager.
•Price: $8.99/bottle at the New Pioneer Food Co-op in Iowa City.
•Alcohol content: 5 percent ABV.
The Quiet Man’s grade: B.