Beerspotter: Goose Island Fleur
Where Spotted: Whole Foods, 1440 P St. NW
Price: $7.99 for a 22 oz. bottle
First-Glass Accommodations: I tend to ignore beer packaging, but the spare, white-tablecloth labels of Goose Island’s “Belgian Style” series have come to symbolize the brewery’s exciting new direction: Its scaling back on six-pack offerings to focus on high-quality singles. From the peppery Matilda to the straw-hued Sofie, each Belgian in this series is brewed with an eye toward tradition. Even better: Goose Island manages to keep these beers accessible and food-friendly while satisfying nerds like me who are on an endless search for more creativity in a bottle.
Tea Bragging: The label says Fleur is made with hibiscus, but it doesn’t mention the beer is also blended with the delightfully funky kombucha tea. Don’t worry, this remains a populist quaff, essentially a Belgian-style golden ale that finishes with a delicate, floral tartness. I never once suspected that tea-bagging was involved; I just thought the saison yeast was acting up. The newest addition to Goose Island’s “Belgian Style” line, Fleur proves yet again that whenever you see a bottle with that elegant white label, you should never assume the beer is out of your league.