Beer Review: New Glarus Tail Wagger
The Tail Wagger was a surprise. I thought I knew what New Glarus brewed, so I was shocked when I saw something new. According to the label, "this is the strongest beer we have ever brewed..." SOLD! That was the point when I said "6 pack, you are coming with me."
Tail Wagger is pretty different as far as New Glarus beers go. Generally, I think that New Glarus has three categories: light, accessible beers (Spotted Cow), girly beers (Apple Ale), and distinct flavors (Fat Squirrel, Staghorn). Tail Wagger is a bit different. The flavor is fairly mild and fruity (like the first two) but with a lot of character (like the last). It's a happy marriage.
Tail Wagger has a slightly bitter initial taste on account of the very high alcohol content (I'd estimate it to be about 9%). The color is surprising. It is an amazingly vibrant red. It puts traditional red beers to shame. Once the beer fills your mouth, you will notice the very hoppy flavor. Tail Wagger is heavy on the hops, which can be overpowering to some people. But I found it quite refreshing. The flavor is rich. It has weight, but it is not too heavy that you can't enjoy the beer. It is strong, but accessible. You really feel the alcohol content in the after taste. You know that you aren't drinking Miller Lite.
This beer is kind of harsh. It will sneak up on you and do you in. I would suggest buying a 6 pack and having two in a sitting. Any more than that and you are just wasting good beer while buzzed up. I don't know how long this beer will be available. New Glarus loves to brew small batches of experiments. Get the Tail Wagger while you can. It will knock you flat.