Beer Review: Upright Seven

by Bryan on May 15, 2011

  1. “Whoa, what was that?  Not what I expected”
  2. “Not bad, I’ll have a few more tastes”
  3. “Put some music on, I’m ready to get down on this beer”

If you’ve had Upright Brewing Company’s “Seven” brew, you might have experienced the same three steps of drinking Seven that I did.  With an increasingly sparkling reputation on the West Coast, the tiny, yet brilliant Upright Brewing has been making unique, farmhouse-inspired beers that blur the lines between beer styles and challenge a drinker’s taste buds – and Seven is no different.  I was drawn to this beer by three things:  my buddy Chip actually bringing it to my house, the beautiful 750 ml bottle and simple label, and the mystery shrouding a beer simply named with a number (and a lucky one at that).

Seven pours a strong golden color and leaves a massive, dense white head that lingers in the glass.  The smell is nice and flowery with citrus and a hint of hops.  The taste, however, is where the shock is experienced – that first taste is surprisingly bitter/sour with some spiciness which had me believing that this was a traditional sour ale, and leaving me second guessing what I was expecting to drink.  However, I noticed that after that initial shock, the sip mellowed and left a nice aftertaste and good mouth feel.   The taste was sweet, hoppy, and citrusy with a strong initial hit followed by a mellow lingering aftertaste.  The beer, like Upright’s other beers, uses saison yeast and four kinds of hops to get its unique taste and characteristics, and results in a farmhouse ale definitely worth trying.  After a few more sips of this 8%’er, it was time to “do work”, listen to some Elliott Smith, and toss it back.

For those interested in expanding their farmhouse horizons, Upright is traditionally hard to get East of the Rockies, but can be purchased via various specialty shops on the Inter Web – take a look at

Serving Type: 750 ml bottle

Glassware:  Goose Island chalice

Color (hue and head):  rich, golden color; thick, white head that lingers

Aroma:  flowery, citrusy, hoppy, sweetness

Taste:  Initial bitterness, spiciness, sweet, hoppy, citrus

Grade:  92/100 (A-)

Musical Pairing:  Elliott Smith – Waltz #2

Be sure to check out Beer, For The Hops Challenged (and check us out on facebook) to learn more about Kansas City/Chicago/Midwest brews, news, and fun. Thanks for reading.

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