What is it about dogs on beer labels?

And why is it that I usually like a beer if there’s a dog on the label?

That’s just weird.

I was thinking about that when I picked this up at my Local Beer Heaven, and I didn’t even notice this is a Texan beer. The last beer I reviewed, which also had a dog on the label, was another local.

Speaking of weird, this beer smells weird. It has a sour sweet scent to it, yeasty, all mixed in with an otherwise pleasantly dark malty aroma.

Will this be the beer with a dog on the label that I don’t like? We’ll see. I raise it up to my lips with just a hint of dread. I’m expecting something … icky.

Nope! Not icky! Very different but not icky. I can see why Kegs & Barrels is selling a lot of this stuff. I was lucky to get a bottle.

MMM, mmmMMMmmm, that’s good! What the heck is in this brew? Must go to the Independence Brewing Company website and find out…

For one thing, it’s named after the brewery’s mascot, a dog named Jasper. The website also says: “Brilliantly golden, Jasperilla is a unique take on an old ale. It has a complex yet subtle aroma – a blend of hops, citrus, and biscuity notes. Just the right amount of hops balances the mild maltiness and alcohol flavors.”

I have to agree. “Biscuity” is a good word to pin down that unique flavor I’m experiencing. The beer starts out sweet and as you make your way through the bottle it gives way to a increasingly aggressive bitterness that is at once sharp and yet pleasant. The citrus notes grow over time as well. Present at all times is a kind of bready, “biscuity” maltiness that keeps you in the here and now.

This beer demands your attention. It is most definitely a center stage beer.

And while, for some odd subjective reason I can’t even explain, it doesn’t make it as a Holy Beer contender, even though it is, without a doubt, a groovy brew.

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