02 Apr Equal Parts Exotica Zombie
Equal Parts Exotica Zombie Fruited Sour
2nd Ward, EADO
Packaging: Draft, 4 pack 16 ounce cans
I had the pleasure of sitting down with Matt Peterson of Equal Parts recently to discuss a very exciting project. Dude is smart. And deep. And full of life experience. It was a lot of fun listening to him and his team’s perspective on beer, and it had me regretting not interviewing them sooner.
But we’ll fix that soon enough.
Let’s talk about Equal Parts Exotica Zombie, though. Exotica is a new series for Equal Parts where they plan to dissect and recreate Tiki Style cocktails as beers, and the concept smells a little like Secret Beach if I do say so myself…
Their IG reads, “The history of this cocktail is shrouded in mystery, IP theft, and super weird tiki-style corporate espionage. If you ever want an interesting read, sit down and search for the origins of the Zombie.”
Save yourself a search because here are the highlights.
The Zombie was apparently created by Donn Beach, AKA Don the Beachcomber of Hollywood in the 1930’s. The Zombie – not the Mai Tai – was the genesis of tropical drinks and Tiki bars. Punch Drink explains, “The Zombie is a prime example of his typical concoction: strong and rather mysterious (it contains two different proprietary mixes). Bar lore says the original was so potent that Beach mandated his customers order no more than two Zombies in one sitting.”
“Donn’s Mix” was the secret ingredient, and it was basically cinnamon simple syrup mixed with grapefruit juice. The Zombie fits perfectly with Donn’s philosophy: “If you can’t get to paradise, I’ll bring it to you.”
Well, I’m here to tell you that paradise is in 2nd Ward Houston, and IDGAF how crazy that sounds. Sigma has changed their name to Equal Parts, but their “take the scenic route” to beer recipe creation hasn’t changed one bit. The new Equal Parts brand is still budding, but it’s beers like Exotica that remind us all that not too much has changed in the brewhouse at 3118 Harrisburg Blvd.
What has changed a lot is their visual identity. Their new cans are pretty cool, and they’re a far cry from their old, hyper-esoteric, metal/movie quote-laden labels. NGL, I had to Google for about 20-30 minutes each to write solid reviews on Nude Tayne and Dick Jones, but I’m also not a movie guy. Anyhow, the Exotica labels sport a pattern of big leaves, and for each release, the color of the pattern changes. Zombie is blue, purple, and a pinkish color.
Equal Parts Exotica Zombie pours a slightly hazy orange, and the head is chalk white. The head dissipates pretty quickly, but a ring remains to lace delicately.
Simply put, this beer has a lot going on. The nose starts to unravel with lime, Passionfruit, and spices, but it’s not quite clear yet what’s beneath the surface.
Zing. Pow. Right in the kisser. The first sip of Equal Parts Exotica Zombie awakened my pallet with a sharp, fruity burst of acidity. Sweetness from the Barbados molasses starts the sip, but it’s mild, and it’s well balanced by all the tart fruit that follows. Pineapple and citrus take over, and then the finish is an odd spicy mixture of cinnamon and what seems like cardamom. After some digging, there’s no cardamom to be found in the recipe, but the cinnamon and all the fruit tricked me!
This beer has no comparison. Period.
As far as I know, Exotica is only available at the aforementioned 3118 Harrisburg Blvd in Second Ward. This is the kind of beer that’ll be making booms in porch bombs if your trading friends have any sense.
Equal Parts Exotica Zombie
Overall, I can’t lie, I didn’t know squat about the Zombie cocktail before writing this review. I don’t drink liquor. I don’t drink cocktails, and I’ve definitely never had a Tiki drink in my life, Zombie, Mai-Tai, or otherwise! No shade on anybody that fits into any of those categories, but I just prefer beer. However, this cocktail-inspired beer opened my eyes big time. When Secret Beach first popped up on the scene, I knew he had something special to offer, and this series is BOLD proof of that gut feeling. His influence on Equal Parts will be felt in glasses around the country as porch bombs are opened full of Exotica recipes. What’d you think of it overall? Drop a comment below or hit the stars to vote.
User Review( vote)
Beers to you, Houston! 🍻