There’s been many an occasion walking into a bottle shop that a brew from Rogue Brewing Company has caught my eye. After all, if any brewery specializes in outlandish coloured bottles that brashly refuse to sit quietly on the shelf like a good little beer it’s the boys from Oregon.
*Your honour, this is an open and shut case. I present the following evidence*
Exhibit A: Rogue’s Sriracha Hot Stout – an adaptation of the fiery red hues of the famous hot sauce.
Exhibit B: Rogue’s Marionberry Braggot – a bright purple number incorporating a multitude of golden bees.
Exhibit C: Rogue’s Pumpkin Patch Ale – a bottle draped in the soft orange tones associated with The USA’s favourite holiday-related vegetable.
*I rest my case*
As far as marketing goes, it’s brilliant. It’s exceptionally difficult to walk past Rogue’s offerings without perusing the bottles further to find out about their latest brewing endeavours. Possibly their most recognisable bottles are the hot pink creations that mark the collaborative beers between Rogue and Voodoo Doughnuts. Combining two of God’s greatest gifts to man – beer and doughnuts – the Rogue Voodoo crossovers attempt to ‘liquefy’ a number of Voodoo’s doughy offerings.
Voodoo Doughnuts produce what can only be described as the fried dough-based equivalent of the ‘freakshake’ phenomenon that has captured the world’s attention. They offer vast slathers of chocolate frosting, peanut butter, and all number of fruit, chocolate and sprinkle-based toppings. Previous incarnations of the Rogue Voodoo beers have included: a Bacon Maple Ale, a Chocolate, Peanut Butter & Banana Ale, a Lemon Chiffon Crueller Ale, and a Pretzel, Raspberry & Chocolate Ale. Each of the beers is made to imitate one of Voodoo’s doughnuts.
They have been described as the result of “beer, whiskey and four leaders dedicated to changing the status quo” and really, these insane combinations could only have come from the deepest, darkest recesses of a drunken brain.
As luck would have it, a Christmas present from my brother resulted in the Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Mango Astronaut Ale making its way into my fridge. It’s inspired by the Voodoo Mango Tango – a doughnut filled with mango jelly and topped with vanilla frosting and tangy orange powder.
*Side bar – I have no idea where the ‘Astronaut’ comes into any of this*
It pours an amber-copper colour, a thin head that soon dissipated and not overly excited carbonation. Of course – provided its heritage – on the nose you are smacked in the face with mango aroma. In a blind smelling you could almost swear you had a glass of mango juice sitting in front of you. Unsurprisingly it tastes fruity – mango, pineapple and orange – although it’s not a massively intense flavour. It slides down and leaves a fruity, slightly yeasty aftertaste, with a hint of vanilla sneaking in there. Coming in a 750ml bottle I would recommend this as one to share with friends. It’s a pleasant-tasting beer, but one that you could tire of if forced to down the entire bottle (as I enthusiastically did).
Unfortunately – due to residing in Australia and not Oregon, I cannot attest as to whether the beer is an accurate representation of the doughnut that inspired it – that taste test can wait for when I eventually make my way to the US of A. I can tell you that if you’re looking for a fairly non-offensive, fruity, beer offering – this might be the one for you.