Festina Peche – The Dog(fish Head) Days of Summer

Ok, only two more beers to go for this roundup of DFH beers, and I’ll be honest gentle readers, this one has me a little scared.  Oh not because it’s some “totally out there” beer like Rocky Mountain Oyster beer or Beard beer.  No, the beer in question is a simple fruit beer.  Why the dread?  Because so many people LOVE this beer.

So far I haven’t gotten a lot of negativity during this.  I figured once I started poking DFH with a stick, the millions (AND MILLIONS!) of the brewery’s fans would gather and demand to know why I rated their particular beer so low.  But so far the only thing that’s happened is two guys on Reddit stated that they loved Midas Touch, and another guy asked which ancient ales I preferred over Midas Touch.  When I told him, he kindly thanked me for the information.  That’s criticism I can take all day long.

Every year when Festina Peche is released people seem to go wild.  They seek it.  Buy it.  Hoard it.  Sing songs about it.  Built monuments to it.  Name babies after it.  Ok, maybe that last one is an exaggeration, but man people around here do love them some peach.

And why not?  After all, what’s the first state you think of when you think of peaches.  Why, Delaw….GEORGIA?  Who said, Georgia?  Come on.  Somebody fess up.  Ok, fine.  But we’re not continuing until someone comes clean.

And I have all day.

Nothing else to do.

Just waiting for someone to say something.

Ah, I though it was you.  Well just so you know, although Georgia is the peach state it’s not the top peach producer in the US.  And I’ll have  you know that for part of the nineteenth century, Delaware was the number one producer of peaches in the US.  How important was peach production to the state back in those days?  Well, important enough that the state flower was designated the peach blossom, and the state dessert is peach pie.  And of course the official state fruit is….strawberries.  Hmmmm, ok we seemed to have missed the mark on that that one.  Anyway, Middletown, Delaware still holds the Olde-Tyme Peach festival, as does the town of Wyoming.  So although we may not be “GEORGIA”, we do have a little peach in our blood.  But how about our beer?  Is that really where we want our peach?  Let’s taste.

Dogfish Head’s Festina Peche, $8.99 a 4-Pack

THEM: DFH describes FP as a neo-Berliner Weisse which is a wheat beer brewed with ale yeast; and Lactobacillus and Brettanomyces to give the beer its signature acidity and earthiness respectively.  The beer can sometimes be served with a sweet syrup (such as raspberry) to balance out the sourness.  But in the case of FP, DFH does it by adding peach puree.  The beer clocks in at a non-threatening 4.5%ABV and has an almost non-existent 8IBUs.

ME: Peche pours golden with a quick energetic head that quickly fades.  Man the peach is already jumping out of the glass and I haven’t even put my nose up to it yet.  I’m finding the nose a little subdued, there’s not much beyond the peach to be honest.  But there is that sourness in the nose to warn you of what’s to come and a touch of what I can best describe funk meets earthiness fall in love and have kids.  This is really clean in the taste with the front being almost empty and the peach coming in the middle.  There’s a slight sweetness from the peaches, but that gets clear out quick by the sour/tart finish like a NYC bouncer on a drunken patron.  Right between the peach and the tartness however, is a flash of earthy/funky something that is distracting me from this beer for about 5 seconds.

My overall impression of this beer is that it’s interesting.  It is definitely peach.  But if you think this a glass of those sugar-water packed peach slices your mom used to put in your school lunch – you couldn’t be more off the mark.  FP has a nice tart kick in the back end that not only serves to balance the beer out, but cleanses your palette at the same time.  Personally I’d go GLASS on this one.  It would be good to have from time to time, but nothing I’m overly crazy about.  The earthiness was a little off for me, but since that’s a characteristic of a Berliner Weisse I certainly can’t say it shouldn’t be there.  Maybe I should rate the style a GLASS, and the beer a 4-PACK?  Naaaa.  Sorry, just not for me I guess.  Oh well, let the stone throwing commence (stone – peach pit, get it?  Get it?  Is this thing on?)

Time for another beer.

DFH Peche2

Author: Ed (The Dogs of Beer)

Beer Blog focused on Delaware & surrounding area. Drinker of beer. Writer of stuff. Over user of commas. Dangler of prepositions.

9 thoughts on “Festina Peche – The Dog(fish Head) Days of Summer”

  1. First, Thanks for the shout out for my take on 61 – sorry it took so long for me to get around to that.

    Second, Midas Touch has never worked its magic on me. The only DH brew that I dislike (disliked) more is (was) Au Courant – frankly, now that I’ve become more comfortable with sours in general I might be willing to give that one another shot. Midas Touch just has an undefinable cloying wrongness to it that I can’t shake.

    In any event (finally getting to the point), Festina Peche just wrapped up its second consecutive summer as my favorite hot weather summer brew, successfully fighting off Hell or High Watermelon Wheat (which slipped further back after they swapped out real watermelon puree for extract. I also found Festina to play well with a wider variety of foods than I’d initially suspected.

    Certainly not a style for everyone and not a brew I seek out once the first frost sets in but until then, there;s usually one or two in the ammo chamber.


    1. After reading your comments, and those of triple-B below, I wonder if I’ve done FP a disservice. I drank it in the comfort of my own house, away from the heat. This past weekend I spent three days in the humidity and head trying to reclaim a good chunk of my backyard from nature. I wonder if I’d had two 4-packs of FP in the fridge during those sweat campaigns if I would have looked upon it more favorably. The prevailing notion does seem to be that it’s a hot summer day thirst quencher.

  2. Festina Peche. I love that beer. This was the first year it’s graced my lips. I’d say I drank more of it than other beer this summer. It’s just so damn refreshing. So, I agree with your rating of Glass….after glass….after glass…..after glass!

  3. How did you handle that photo? I feel that 90 percent of my comments are simply “That picture is awesome,” so you should be aware of my general feelings by now.

    1. I may do a post on how I pulled this picture off. I will tell you that everything in the picture is real. The only photoshopping done was the blur and streak on the peach pit and the blur on the neck of the bottle. I also shopped out a piece of cork that was keeping the bottle tilted.

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