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Spring was definitely the first thing that came to mind when I popped the top off this beer. It was in the mid 60s again here in Colorado Springs which made drinking this beer somewhat pleasurable.

Springboard from New Belgium is a 6.2% ABV Belgian Pale Ale wood-aged beer brewed with Goji Berries and Schisandra. Last on the scene in 2008 this is part of what could be seen as a revival of some of New Belgium's old seasonals.

Schisandra translates as "five flavor fruit" because they possess all five basic flavors in Chinese herbal medicine: salty, sweet, sour, pungent (spicy), and bitter. In traditional Chinese medicine it is used as a remedy for many ailments: to resist infections, increase skin health, and combat insomnia, coughing, and thirst.

The smell was delicate but had some hints of fruit. It pours to a golden yellow and is light and bubbly with a wispy white head and barely any lacing. There is a light mouth feel and a smooth taste that finishes dry but sharp, but not full of alcohol. The first few sips were enjoyable with the hints of fruit but those quickly dissipated the more I drank this beer. Since I like lighter beers, I was a fan at first but it's almost too light and it quickly took me back to my cheap, beer-swilling days of college. The light flavors of this beer almost had me experiencing flashback to my college days, which I can't say elicit the fondest memories of beer. To be honest I really didn't get much more out of this than I would have with a dime a dozen brand. If the fruit or wood had come through just a bit more it would be a more distinctive beer, but as it is I am not a fan. If you are looking for an easy sipping beer that is light and easy to drink on a warm spring day, this is for you. In fact I would say that this might be a great beer to help bring those folks that are new to craft beers into the fold. 

Springboard is available February, March and April 2013 in select New Belgium Folly Packs.

12 pack

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