Troeg's Mad Elf

The elf on the label of Troeg's Mad Elf leers knowingly at us with a sack of oversize cherries slung over one shoulder and a tulip glass held casually in his right hand. So it goes with the beer inside the bottle. The flavors are bright and welcoming, the beer is as crisp and easy drinking as anything you've ever tasted, but it packs a wallop that is as dangerous as it is unexpected.

The flavors of Mad Elf unfold like a three-act play: bright cherry bubble gum gives way to a bready center before finishing with a spectacular dryness. Troeg's achieves this psychedelic Seussian effect by brewing what we can only deduce is a Belgian Tripel. The style is a crisp yet complex Belgian style made with the palest of grains along with a sugar that lends it a deceptively dry and drinkable finish. The genius is that they also fold in sweet and sour cherries along with honey. If you're looking for extra mischief, Troeg's packages Mad Elf in epic 3-liter magnums in addition to the standard 12-ounce bottles. Naughty elf.