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The Drink: Gnarly Barley Catahoula Common

By Kaci Yoder

When it comes to the #drinklocal experience, there are two crucial factors: the location and the beverage. Without the first, you might as well just buy a six pack of Abita from Walmart and call it a day. Without the second, you’re missing out on unique, locally sourced brews like Gnarly Barley’s Catahoula Common.

Both of these factors came together last Thursday when Gnarly Barley boosted their Red Stick presence with a visit to Corporate Brew & Draft. The Hammond brewery brought with them barrels of two of their most popular beers: Catahoula Common and Korova Milk Porter.

Run through Ubuntu coffee beans and Madagascar vanilla beans, the Korova Milk Porter delivered with a deep brown color and heady aromas reminiscent of your favorite order at the coffee shop. Its full body, sweet layers of flavor, and silky mouthfeel make each sip a study in decadence.

But for this reviewer, the Catahoula Common was the star. So popular that Gnarly Barley had to hotshot another cask of it from Hammond during the evening, this brew passed through juniper berries and orange peel to make one light, delightful glass. Lean into the foam coating the brim of the glass, and the fruit aromas are clear and crisp.

The beer puts a local spin on the California Common, a beer category also known as steam beer made unusually effervescent by high temperatures during fermentation. Gnarly Barley calls Catahoula Common a “light colored refreshing lager with the ‘bite’ of an ale,” and upon sampling the beer, the description certainly seems to fit. This is a beer that drinks easily and charms the palette with a refreshing brightness. Fans of lagers and pale ales alike can find something to love in this beer.

Next time you’re in the market for something to mellow you out after a long day of classes or work, get comfortable in front of a glass of Catahoula Common.

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