McFate's Irish Red From Fate Brewing Company: A Well-Made Malt-Forward Beer

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The Beer: McFate's Irish Red
The Brewery: Fate Brewing Company South
ABV: 5.4 percent
IBU: 18

Owner Steve McFate has developed quite a following at his original Fate brewpub founded in 2012 and located on East Shea Boulevard in Scottsdale. He developed so much of a following, in fact, that he's already needed to expand his production. That's why he opened Fate Brewing "South," located at 1312 N. Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale, near the Papago Plaza area of McDowell and Scottsdale Roads, earlier this year. McFate carries on his tradition of good beers at his new facility, especially with McFate's Irish Red.

Aromas: Initial toasty/caramel-like malt sweetness with the lightest hint of roast to support. Virtually no hop aroma as expected for the style.

Flavor: Sure, IPAs are all the rage these days, but every once in awhile, a beer drinker wants to enjoy a traditional, well-made, malt-forward beer. On this, McFate's delivers. This traditional Irish Red is a malt showcase with complex flavors of toasted bread crust, pleasant buttery caramel and toffee all working in unison with each other to create a very drinkable and balanced beer. If you're looking for hops, don't look here as the malt is the star of this show, as it should be. This is an Irish Red Ale, and that style, according to the BJCP (Beer Judge Certification Program) style guidelines calls for a beer with malt forward flavors and aromas, and very little, if any, perceptible hops. 

Appearance:  Dirty red clay/burnt deep copper color, opaque, with a non-persistent off white head consisting of small bubbles.  Perhaps not as crystal clear as a traditional Irish version but every bit as tasty. The beer is nicely attenuated, meaning the residual sugars have been fermented out completely and the drinker is left with a very refreshing, easy drinking beverage.

Mouthfeel: A medium-light body makes for easy consumption as does the medium-low carbonation. There is no astringency. The beer is smooth and easy to drink. There is no alcohol warmth, instead letting the malt shine from the first sip on the front of the palate through the end the last drop.

Fate South is a beautiful new facility that's very open and airy, and a very inviting place to have a beer, especially now that the heat has broken and relaxing on the patio is a must. The large, lengthy bar runs throughout the majority of the restaurant inside, and even extends into the outside patio area, giving patrons the option of inside or outside enjoyment. TVs showcase your favorite game while the shape of the bar encourages conversation among guests. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly and all the beers are well made and continue to add to the ever more formidable Arizona craft beer scene.  

Visit the Fate Brewing Company website for more information.

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