Those crazy Belgians are always adding orange peel to their wheat beers. An East Bay brewery goes them one further -- it puts the juice and the flowers into an ale, giving it a little orange juice tang, as you'd expect. Surprisingly, though, the sweet orange blossom scent shows up more in the palate than in the nose. The nose actually suggests a fruity white wine, perhaps a Semillon, rather than an ale.
So is this a food beer? With all that aromatic stuff going on you might expect so, but it's a little hard to think what dish it would have a special affinity for. Maybe it goes best with an afternoon by the pool.
If the idea of orange blossom ale sounds like a dilettantish whim, by the way, get that idea out of your head. Buffalo Bill may not be a very familiar name around here, but it happens to be the second-oldest brew pub in the country.
-- Charles Perry
Style: A mild ale with fruity nose, a sweet-sour tang and a poetic aftertaste of oranges and orange blossom
Price: $7.99 per six-pack