A staple to our Wisconsin friends, New Glarus doesn't ship to Chicago. This is especially painful for Zuch, who can buy almost any beer his heart desires at the local Binny's--just not his favorite one. Fortunately, I was passing through Madison a few weeks back and picked us up some Dancing Man at the local Woodman's.
Tonight I finally got my first taste, and I can now declare it MBB consensus: This shit's fantastic.
The foam explodes from the bottom of the glass on the pour, so this is one of those rare instances I'd stress appropriate glassware--a 23-ounce weizen glass--or else be very careful to pour it slowly. The first six ounces might be enough to overtop a pint glass with the foam.
The aroma is typical for a hefeweizen--ripe banana first, clove second, and also some lilac, I think. On the taste, the order reverses--clove comes first, then banana, with bubblegum up near the top. It finishes with a little bitterness--more vegetable than citrus--similar to a turnip. Once the sip goes down the throat, your mouth tastes like you just took a nip off the bottle of vanilla extract. If you're a liqueur drinker, Dancing Man might remind you of Galliano. For best results, sip generously at the middle of your tongue, and swish it back in symmetry.
If this beer could be brewed at a slightly lower ABV--maybe 6.5ish% as opposed to its 7.2%--without compromising any of the flavor, I would consider it perfect. I could taste the alcohol a little more than I'd have liked, especially on the first two sips. Otherwise, I have no complaint.
Grade: S, for soothing. It's like a massage or a warm bath or a prescription sedative. Delicious, light, easy to drink, and just enough alcohol to put you in a happy place. Make that two enthusiastic thumbs up from this blog.