I have to extend a bit of a spoiler alert right at the top of this post… Half of the fun of this mixed twelve pack was exploring it, trying each beer with my wife and then guessing what each flavor was supposed to be mimicking. If you managed to snag some of these beers, and you’re looking for the full experience, do yourself a favor and don’t read this post until after you’ve tried them all and figured them out for yourself.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s dig into this mixed 12 pack! I’m sure you read about this before it was released, and are aware of what the idea is, but I’ll give you a quick refresher. Urban Artifact took six different beers, all designed around candy flavors, and put two of each into a 12 pack. The labels, while each one is different, none of them really tell you what the beer is… they just showcase different fears. This leaves each bottle a complete mystery until you pour it in a glass. It’s freaking brilliant, and a ton of fun.
The beers are all similar, if not the exact same, as far as the base goes. The brewery just took lacto (to sour it up) and some really fun flavorings, and ran wild with it. Putting on a Halloween costume of their own to create some of the most off the wall favors that they could come up with to be, in the words of brewer Josh Elliot “completely abnoxious, not unlike the holiday itself”.
Let’s ruin all the fun for you, then, if you didn’t heed my spoiler warning and get on with this!
Trick Or Treat – Death
I loved this one! I went back and forth on what candy I thought it might be, with blue raspberry warhead getting a top spot based on other people’s guesses. My final say though is these little blue stringy candy strings… they have powdery sugar dust on the outside. Look up “sour punch candy” and you’ll see what I mean – that’s what this tastes like to me.
Trick Or Treat – Disease
Ahhh… here’s the first trick in the pack, and my least favorite. It tastes exactly like an Atomic Fireball – and if that’s your thing, you might love this. It’s a red-hot, spicy cinnamon and a really spicy lingering heat throughout the whole thing.
Trick Or Treat – Graveyard
The fear of the undead… I get the fear, but this is most definitely a treat in my book. The beer tastes like a sour watermelon candy. I’m going to call it ‘Watermelon Jolly Rancher’. This was the first one I tried of the bunch, and remained on of my favorites throughout the whole pack.
Trick Or Treat – Heights
This one is candy apple, but I wish the apple flavor came out a little stronger. As the beer warmed up a bit, it started tasting a little more chemical-like and the fruit flavor started to shift a bit from apple and caramel to more of a tick sweet berry flavor… some people kept mentioning cherry, which got into my head also, which might have played into the shifting perspective.
Trick Or Treat – Natural Disasters
I’ve heard a couple different guesses on this one, and I’m going to go with my first instinct – Orange Tootsie Pop. I don’t actually taste a bite of tootsie roll when I dig in and explore the taste, but every orange sip just screams tootsie pop to me. I’ve also head creamsicle, and orange wedges, maybe smarties… those are all good guesses, but I’m going with mine.
Trick Or Treat – Snakes
This is horrible looking. Grey-black in color… and it tastes like black licorice. I can only assume that this is meant as one of the two “tricks” in the pack… but I’ll be damned if both me and the wife didn’t think it was delicious. Dead on to black licorice jelly beans, or those little black licorice bites… maybe some awesome Good and Plenty’s. So tasty.
What I Think…
My takeaway is that this idea is brilliant. The entire idea put together is near perfect. This became an experience. Sitting around with friends or family and guessing at what each flavor was created an experience that can’t be beat. We can only hope that this first mixed twelve pack will be replicated by Urban Artifact again as time goes on… other holidays, other beer ideas, the possibilities are endless!