Chicagoist's Beer of the Week: Half Acre's "Akari Shogun"
By Jason Baldacci in Food on Oct 12, 2012 7:20PM
While the weather the past week had us convinced we were well into sweater season, the forecast for the next few days shows us back up over 60 degrees. When the weather gets cold, the beer we drink usually gets darker, but with this pop of warmth we're expecting, we recommend you take this opportunity to drink the last of Half Acre Beer Company's "Akari Shogun" that you can find around town.
"Akari Shogun" is easily explained as a hoppy wheat beer, but it's also so much more than that. It's chock full of cloudy, hazy goodness. The wheat involved keeps the beer creamy, yet crisp on the palate, and the overall hop profile is amazingly complex. It's a little green on the nose, with a pop of herbs and pine up front. Throughout the mid-palate, there's a touch of tropical pineapple and mango lurking just beneath the surface, and it all leads up to an assertive and bitter finish. This beer is definitely hoppy, but at 5.5 percent alcohol content, it's also very balanced. The wheaty backbone stands up to the versatile hop profile, and the beer itself is very quaffable.
As much as we hate to say it, because this is in no way a testament to the quality of the beer itself, "Akari Shogun" would be a dead ringer to drink with chicken wings or BBQ. The clean, creamy body of the beer would stand up to frying oil, and the zippy hops would play nicely with a tangy, spicy sauce. "Akari Shogun" would pair well with most poultry or pork, especially if there was a glaze involved. We'd probably shy away from anything that was too heavy or rich though, as it could overpower the beer and suppress the beautiful hop flavors that make "Akari Shogun" so wonderful.