Showing posts with label boak and bailey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label boak and bailey. Show all posts

Friday, May 18, 2018

The Session 135: Roundup

A couple of Friday's ago, I jumped into the breach in order to host the 135th iteration of The Session, the monthly blogathon which encourages beer bloggers to write about a shared theme on the first Friday of the month. The theme I asked people to write about was 'Sepia Tones', a trip down your own personal beery memory lane.

Everybody's favourite beer writing couple, Jess and Ray of Boak and Bailey took the theme delightfully literally in presenting images from old school pubs 'dominated by shades of brown'.

Up in Ontario, Alan wondered if my theme was an allusion to the idea that we drink in order to "fill in the gaps", and gives us an interesting take on the being of memory and how it relates to boozing in our younger years.

Dean at The Beerverse recounts his personal beer story, starting with his dad asking for a beer from the fridge, and the 10 year old Dean duly obliging.

In my own post I recalled my local pub in Birmingham when I was a student, which is sadly no more, and also my favourite beer in my early years in Prague, which is also sadly to become no more and was the genesis of the theme.

On Instagram, KN published this image of a 'precursor to the nostalgic dominance of PBR'.

This clutch of content is everything that I am aware of with May's Session, but if there is anything else out there in the beery internet on this theme, let me know and I'll add to the list.

Oh, and please, please, please think about signing up to host a Session, go here for more.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Guest Post: Going Steady with Golden Beers

Part 2 of the 'Always There' guest post mini-series comes from those fine folks Boak and Bailey, and with that minimalist introduction (seriously if you aren't already reading their blog you should be) out of the way, I hand you over to them.....

Al wanted us to think about beers that we keep going back to which, as far as we're concerned, is just another way of asking: 'What are your favourite beers?' After all, your favourite album isn't one you listened to once, enjoyed well enough, but then left to gather dust: it's the one that pops up under 'frequently played' on iTunes -- the one you have on CD, deluxe double CD, MP3 and in your Spotify favourites. You could hum it in your sleep.

We've said before, only somewhat tongue-in-cheek, that Westmalle Tripel is the Very Best Beer in the World. We always have some in the house and it's pretty much Boak's default beer. It never seems to diminish in WOW factor -- every time, it amazes us afresh.

Pilsner Urquell is on the list, too, especially now it comes in brown glass in the UK and can be bought for around £1.50 ($2.35) per bottle. We have a fridgeful right now and it's the perfect no-brainer beer -- quietly satisfying, but not demanding of attention.

When it comes to cask-conditioned beer in the pub, there's an obvious answer: St Austell Proper Job. Established in the 19th century, St Austell is our local big brewery here in Cornwall, and Proper Job is a golden, US-accented IPA first brewed in homage to Bridgport's classic take on the style more than a decade ago. Brought down from 5.5% to 4.5% ABV over the years, it was a 'session IPA' before that was a buzz-phrase, and is a beer we can easily drink multiple pints of, several times a week. So that's exactly what we do.

So, there you go: that's what amounts to our top three beers, right now, in the real world. We like trying new things and find plenty to enjoy at the silly end of the market but, if need be, those three would easily do us for the rest of our lives.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Time for Burton

As the year draws to its close, there are several beery things on my mind. Deciding the Fuggled beers of the year for my categories of pale, amber, and dark. Choosing the beers that will make up most of my drinking on Christmas Day. Looking forward to January and my month of total booze abstinence. Working out what the theme will be for the International Homebrew Project in the coming Spring.

Thus it was at this time last year, unemployed and finally with the time to read Martn Cornell's magnificent Amber, Gold, and Black, the essential guide to British beers, that an idea started to form in my head. I knew as I read that I wanted to bring a neglected beer style back to life for the homebrewers from around the world that partake in the project. Thankfully one particular beer style jumped from the pages of Martyn's book (seriously, if you haven't yet bought it from Amazon you should do, thinking about it, Christmas is coming so treat yourself, or persuade someone to treat you), a beer with a story rooted in the imperial history of Great Britain, and tied inextricably to some of the most famous names in British brewing history; Bass, Allsopp, Ind Coope.

For those who don't follow Fuggled all that regularly, the International Homebrew Project will running for the 5th time this spring, and I very much imagine that we will continue our burgeoning tradition of bringing a piece of brewing history back to life. The project started out with just myself and one other homebrewer here in Virginia. Last year, brewers from several US states, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Czech Republic, Lithuania, and a clutch of other countries took part.

Last year's International Homebrew Project revived a strong Scottish mild from 1853 that single handedly smashed many a homebrew/craft brew myth about Scottish ales. You know the kind of bullshit, hops don't grow in Scotland so the brewers there had to import hops from England, and in an act of national 'living up to stereotype' were too cheap to do so in any great volume, all the while shipping peat infused water from the west to the breweries in the east. So, I didn't really have the heart to mess too much with people's heads, after all wouldn't a 10.5% abv, north of 100 IBU, pale mild be enough of a mind bend? Well, in the end, no, not really.

If there is a beer style that defines the microbrewing world, then surely India Pale Ale would be the forerunner, in a race of one pretty much. As such, given the sometimes woeful understanding of beer history and development that seems to abound, a pale beer with a shit ton of hops chucked into the boil, originally made in Burton upon Trent, has to have been the original India Pale Ale right? Well, no, beer history is, like most of human history, far more complex, and interesting, than the simple pronouncements that might one day make it into an Oxford University Press ultimate guide.

While Burton may be most famous in the modern age as the spiritual home of India Pale Ale, it is a beer which stayed much closer to home to which the city lent its name. At the same time as the likes of Bass and Allsop were shipping barrels of pale ale with plenty of hops to the sub-continent, they were making a pale ale with plenty of hops for the home market. By the middle of the 20th Century, Burton Ale was being listed as one of four principal ales being made by British brewers, the other three being pale ale, mild ale, and stout.

At the end of the 1940s, Burton Ale was described as being:

'a draught beer darker and sweeter than bitter...common to all breweries wherever they are. Burton is also known as 'old' '.

One hundred years previously though, Burton Ale had been a strong beer, made exclusively from pale malt, and with generous amounts of hops. An anonymous writer in the early 19th Century had Burton Ale with an original gravity of 1.140, 4.5 lbs of hops per barrel (in comparison, an IPA of the time would have had about 6lbs per barrel), and needed a year and a half maturation. This was clearly a beer which demanded respect.

Go back a further hundred years. From the 1740s until the Russian Imperial government introduced tariffs on beer imports in 1822, Burton Ale was a thick, sweet, brown ale, which was 'so rich and luscious that if a little were spilled on the table the glass would stick to it'. As an interesting historical side note, there was an exception made on the tariff for porter, which eventually led to the creation of Russian Imperial Stout.

What to do then with a beer which has evolved and meandered through the various colours, strengths, and bitterness levels associated with the drink. The answer is really rather obvious, ask the people that take part in the project. Thus it was that I suggested the following options:
  • 1860s Scottish version of Burton
  • 1870s English recipe, originally brewed in Burton itself
  • 1900s American Burton
  • 1910s English 'Mild' Burton
  • 1930s English Old Burton Extra
  • 1990s English recreation of 1840s pale Burton
The eventual winner was the 1870s variant, which was originally brewed by the legendary Truman's brewing company. Despite being most closely related with the East End of London, Truman's owned a brewery in Burton as well during the 19th Century, and it was there in 1877 that they brewed Number 4, a pale ale brewed with American and English hops, to almost the same levels as an IPA.


From the recipe provided by Ron Pattinson, the beer chosen would have an Original Gravity of 1.079, 125 International Bitterness Units, and an alcohol content of 7.3% by volume. Clearly a sweet, powerfully 'hoppy' brew, but not a n IPA. It was this fact that annoyed me something rotten when I read the feedback sheets from this years Dominion Cup, in which I entered my Burton Ale in the dreaded Category 23, listed as simply a 'Burton Ale'. The judges clearly weren't au fait with 19 century beer knowledge, and judged the beer as a 'historical IPA'.

I have since brewed an amended version of Burton Ale which was very well received by all who tried it at the recent Homebrew for Hunger, and I can see it becoming something a regular brew. As you can see though from the list above, I have another 5 recipes to brew, all of which claim their heritage from Burton Ale from different points in its timeline.

The next one I plan to make is the 1930s Old Burton Ale from Fullers. Just 58 years after Truman's made their pale brew, Fullers were making a slightly darker ale with an Original Gravity of 1.067, and somewhat paired back hopping, with 'just' 69 IBUs of Goldings. Gone though is the 100% pale malt, replaced with 41% each of English 2 row and American 6 row, 14.5% flaked maize, 3% white sugar, and 0.5% caramel colouring, resulting in a rich cooper beer.

The thing though that confuses me when it comes to Burton Ale is why so few 'craft' breweries seem to be interested in making the style, regardless of era. As a reasonably strong, certainly well hopped, beer, Burton Ale would seem to tick all the right boxes for a revival in the 'craft' brewing world. Like it's better known cousin that got to travel to exotic climes, perhaps the time has come to Burton to make a more concerted come back?

Sure, there are beers being made by various breweries that would be recognised as a Burton Ale at differing points in history. Fuller's 1845 is perhaps the most obvious example, though Young's Winter Warmer, and Timothy Taylor's Ram Tam have both been cited as valid examples of the style. There is a strong argument for saying that many of the modern 'Scotch' ales have plenty in common with 19th century Burton Ales being made in the large Scottish breweries, yet so few lay claim to the Burton Ale moniker.

Having gone through various, frankly ridiculous, shades of IPA, an age of discovery when it comes to the brewing of sour ales, the recent interest in beers from Eastern Europe, especially Grodziskie, perhaps the next big thing in the brewing world should be Burton Ale. A beer with a wealth of history, a great story to tell, as well as all the booze, and hops, so beloved of many a craft beer drinker.

Thus it is that I want to make a plea to the brewers out there looking to do something a little different. Put down the weird ingredients, the herbs, spices, and flavourings, pick up a book, Martyn's is a good place to start, and bring back to life the beers which have fallen by the wayside. Whether it is the Burton Ale which so piqued my interest or something yet more obscure, the past is as rich a resource for your imagination as the spice rack, and you might just find something more palatable there.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

To The Heart of Beer

I am sat here in Central Virginia. On the table in front of me is a glass of beer which could very well be a microcosm of my worldview on the amber nectar, though it is more golden than amber.

The beer in question is quite possibly the Virginian beer that I presently derive more pleasure from than any other. The glass is from a legendary British brewery that makes some of my go-to beers when the mood for well made classic British styles hits. The style of beer in the glass is the one that I talk about most, and quite happily believe to be the very height of the brewer’s craft. I am drinking a Port City Brewing Downright Pilsner, from a Samuel Smith’s tulip imperial pint glass. It is the very image of perfection in my world right now.


Something though is missing. That something is probably the most important element of beer in many ways, because without that something, the beer in my glass would never exist. People. That’s what is missing. People are the true heart of beer.

We can talk long and loud about the beer in our glass being a natural product, made from agricultural ingredients, but the fact remains that the beer in my glass will never be a natural product. Malt does not exist in nature, it is man-made. Wort does not spontaneously boil, nor hops of their own volition leap from bine to pot, or even decide to reside in post fermentation beer to add more aroma. Neither yet do hops so prized in Bohemia simply up sticks and cross oceans to land themselves in an American wort.

Everything in my glass is the product of man. A man, one whose hand I would heartily love to shake, who decided to make a Czech style pale lager, and hop it exclusively with Saaz hops, and chuck some more in for a wonderful dry hopped aroma. Said man also decided to lager the resultant brew for an adequate amount of time, and then to forego the filtering process so as to leave a slight haze to the beer. A man made this beer which I delight in, which I come home from work and ignore all other brews in the fridge for.

Still, something is missing. The thing that is still missing is probably the most important element of beer in many ways. Without this something, the beer in my glass is just another beer in the glass. People. That’s what is missing. People are the true heart of beer.

I enjoy the fact that I can pour a glass of this golden delight at home and sit, with the TV on the background, Mrs V on the sofa doing some first aid training course for her job, and each and every taste of my beer is wonderful. The people element though is still missing, because there is a place, and there are people, that I would rather be enjoying this pint of beer with.

Were I back in Prague I would want to be sat in Pivovarsky klub, with Klara, Ambroz, or Karel behind the bar, and perched on barstools beside me would be any of Evan, Max, Rob, Mark, or a cast of dozens whose company I value, and very deeply miss. Here in Virginia you would likely find me at McGrady’s, with the guys from Three Notch’d, or my colleagues from Starr Hill, or people from my homebrew club. Where there is beer, there are people. Fine people. Good people. Fun people. I could tell the same story about people in Ireland that I would love to drink with more often, people at home in the UK that I haven’t seen for many, many years, people from Uist that randomly come into Starr Hill the one day of the month that I am working there. These people, my people, are the very heart of beer.

I often have this feeling that we lose the humanity of beer in all over hoopla about barrel aging, souring, randalizing, and adding cocoa nibs. As though there is something un-craft about a simple, perfectly brewed, Pilsner enjoyed in good company in a pub with no frills, no banks of taps arrayed like howitzers attacking the Vimy Ridge. It is also as though in our striving for the next great high, we fail to realize that life really doesn’t get any better than this. Perhaps I am a strange chap, and it has been commented on before, but I would rather drink a constant stream of golden lager in great company than have all the great craft beers of the world with a bore of a human being.

It is often commented on how beer people are good people, and something I have found to be generally true is that beer people have an ability that many seem to lack in our ever more polarized world. The majority of people I have met through our attachment to the demon drink have the ability to rise above the petty squabbles of religion, politics, and culture, to see into the heart of honest people and recognize a kindred spirit. Yes I know many people whose beliefs I find baffling, and who I will debate with over pints of beer, both warm and cold fermented, but they are sincere, honest, and willing to listen even if never the twain shall meet.

I have said many times on this blog that many of the best people I know have been met over a pint or several of beer, and that is a truth that I hold on to regardless of the quality of the beer being consumed in many a session (in my world sessions begin at the fifth pint, the first four being proof only that a beer is pintable). Given the essential humanity of beer, beer must ultimately take second place to the quality of the humanity one is imbibing with. Many of my favourite, and most memorable, nights out have been whilst drinking beer which would be considered by many a geek as mere swill, Gambrinus in particular springs to mind.

So, in bringing this vaguely rambling, and longer than normal piece, to a close let us remember one simple truth, beer is really nothing more than a vehicle to a raging headache the morning after without the people in whose company you choose to spend your time drinking. Whether you see those people most weekends, a couple of times a year, or just once every half decade or so, treasure them more so than you treasure the beer itself, because it is they that bring real joy to the experience of drinking.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Fuggled Review of the Year - Blogs

I am making a slight change for my review of this year's best blogs. Rather than being best in Virginia, the US and the World, it will be the best from North America, UK/Ireland and the World, mainly because the blogs I read are pretty evenly split between the three categories. The regional top blogs in my world this year are:
  • North America - A Good Beer Blog
  • UK/Ireland - Boak and Bailey's Beer Blog
  • Rest of the World - Beer Culture


Whether it's researching Albany Ale or hosting an annual photography competition, Alan's blog is always an interesting read and often rather enlightening.


Boak and Bailey have always been interesting, and they are wonderful pub crawl company into the bargain, but this year they really seem to have 'upped their game'. Lots of fascinating posts about the milieu that eventually led to the creation of CAMRA as well as an ode to the working man's club have raised many a smile for me and brought back a fair few memories...


There are very, very few people in the beer world that I look up to, whose friendship I value and whose opinions I regard in the very highest of terms, one such person is Evan Rail. Evan doesn't perhaps blog as often as some of us, but each and every post this year has been worth reading, absorbing and sharing with friends, colleagues and others who love beer. The only downer is that I haven't shared a pint with him in Pivovarsky klub for far too damned long now.

Difficult though it is to single out one blog from some very excellent writers, but it must be done. Earlier this year the winner wrote a series of posts about the origins of Pilsner Urquell which I consider to be essential reading for anyone with an interest in beer history, as such the winner is:
  • Evan Rail - Beer Culture
If you have never read Beer Culture, head on over and then go buy his extended essays on Amazon, Why Beer Matters and In Praise of Hangovers.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Session Hopping

Reading the ever interesting Boak and Bailey yesterday, I was intrigued by a comment about St Austell's Proper Job as failing "as a session beer because it is too intensely hoppy". This got me wondering whether there exists an upper limit on "hoppiness" when it comes to session beers.

Clearly the hipster lupulin loonies in the crowd will immediately shout that such a thing is impossible before going back to taking self portraits with their iPhone camera in an attempt to recreate Blue Steel. To me, as someone who actively likes drinking beer (I am convinced there is a difference between being a beer geek and actively enjoying drinking good beer, though I am yet to thrash that out in my head) the idea that there is an upper limit to the "hoppiness" of session beers seems self-evident.

A couple of the criteria for a session beer, as proposed by Lew Bryson, are that a beer be:
  • flavorful enough to be interesting
  • balanced enough for multiple pints
Balance and flavour then are key identifiers of a session beer. If we accept Lew's proposed ABV limit of 4.5% that means a beer with a starting gravity of 12° Plato, or less. Whilst acknowledging that different yeast strains have differing attenuation properties, I think 12° is a perfectly acceptable ceiling for gravity in session beers. When I think about 12° beers, my mind automatically ambles over to the many dark, perhaps dingy, drinking dens in Prague that sell Pilsner Urquell. Brewed at about 12°, with an ABV of 4.4% and 40 IBUs, Pilsner Urquell is a dream of a session beer.


Perhaps that then is the ball park upper limit of hoppiness for session beers, somewhere in the 35-40 IBU range? I realise that IBUs tell us nothing about the flavour and aroma of a beer, but as a general guideline, I think 40 is a good place to stop with the hops, so that the important part of beer is not impeded, the drinking of it with mates.

BTW - if you haven't read Boak and Bailey's blog you really should, it is an excellent read.

The picture above was taken by my good friend Mark Stewart of Black Gecko Photography

Monday, April 23, 2012

What's In a Name?

Like most homebrewers, I am sure, I like to give my beers names, and I like messing around with fonts to create labels - not really having much of an artistic talent for drawing. As well as naming my own beers, I have chosen the name for a couple of commercial beers.

When we brewed a Tmavé at Devils Backbone I came up with the name "Morana" as she is the Slavic goddess of winter and death, an effigy of whom is burnt each spring to mark the end of winter. More recently another local brewery, Blue Mountain, had a spot of bother with the labelling authorities here about a beer they wanted to call "Chocolate Orange Bourbon Porter" but were told the name is misleading. To solve their problem they turned to the power of social media, and asked their fans on Facebook to come up with the name, my entry won. The name I chose was "Isabel", named for the Princess Imperial of Brazil, which is the world's leading producer of oranges and cocoa and Isabel herself was descended from the royal House of Bourbon.

With my own beers, I like to give them names which are linked to either the style or the place where they originated, or some link to the ingredients. My Charlottenst?dter Pils is named in part after the town I live in, but with the French "ville" replaced with the German "stadt" as it is a German style Pilsner, which I will be bottling tomorrow as it has been in the lagering tank for 35 days now. When I eventually make a Czech version I will have to come up with an alternative to ?arlotovicky Le?ák, because our new house is about 15 miles outside of town. Our new address is, officially at least, in Gordonsville, and one of the meanings of the name Gordon is "large fortification", so my Czech lager could be called "Pevnost" which means "fortress".

Talking about German beers, I am awaiting my score sheet for the only beer I entered in this year's National Homebrew Competition, an altbier called Cobbler's in honour of the first Altbier I ever had, from the Schumacher brewery. I am kind of nerovus about the score, as altbier is such a difficult beer style to find over here, other than Uerige that is, which I haven't seen around for a while.

Anyway, just a few random, and likely unconnected thoughts, having been inspired by Boak and Bailey's post today about naming their beers.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Finding A Local - Guest Blog

Today sees the beginning of a new series of guest blogs here on Fuggled. Taking on the theme of "My Local" the bloggers I have invited will be talking about the pub scene where they live. So rather than me wittering on much longer, I will hand over to the first guest bloggers of the series, Boak and Bailey:


We've just moved to Penzance which is a really, really long way from London -- a short bus ride from Land's End, in fact; in the Atlantic; near America.

With all of our friends hundreds of miles away, as the nights draw in, and the sea starts to crash over the promenade, we're beginning to realise just how much we're going to need a friendly local pub.

But which will it be?

Our actual local -- the nearest pub geographically -- is described online as "grubby inside, grubby outside, and with a hostile atmosphere". It certainly doesn't look welcoming. We're going to give it a miss.


So, downright rough pubs aside, based on what we've seen so far, we've got a choice of lovely pubs with bad beer, or soulless pubs with good beer.

The long-term project is to drink in the lovely pubs often enough that we get to know the landlords and then explain why we only ever drink Budvar from bottles. If that goes well and we "do a Barm", our problem might be solved.


As it is, we've more-or-less decided that, spiritually speaking, our local is a 20 minute bus ride away in a village on the way to St Ives. The beer is great, the regulars are chatty, and the landlord, who brews out back, is happy to geek out about hops with us.


If only it were nearer... As it is, we'll probably never be able to go often enough to earn the sacred right to hang our own glass behind the bar, or be greeted by name when we walk through the door.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Homebrewer of the Week

This week's Homebrewer of the Week interview is really a Homebrewers of the Week, as both Boak and Bailey of blogging fame weigh in on this particular interview. I had the pleasure of meeting them in Prague a while back and enjoyed boozing with a couple of people who so obviously enjoy their beer, so without further ado, here goes.....

Name: Boak and Bailey

How did you get into home brewing?

BOAK: We can't quite remember the exact motivation but, in about 2004, I bought Bailey an extract home brewing kit for his birthday.

BAILEY: And I made a couple of brews, both of which were terrible, and lost interest. They were terrible, by the way, because we did literally everything wrong.

BOAK: Then a year or so later, we picked up some better books, and had another go, and haven't stopped since.

Are you an all grain brewer or extract with grains?

All-grain, although we occasionally experiment with extract and sometimes use DME.

What is the best beer you have ever brewed and why?

Hard to say. Our first lager, maybe, or the IPA we made for our 10th anniversary party – lots of our guests loved it and still rave about it now.

What is the worst, and why?

Oh, there have been too many disasters. Probably the Belgian-style beer which got an infection and smelled of poo/vomit. The biggest disappointment was probably a Belgian-style blonde which looked great, smelled pretty good, but tasted like pure alcohol.

What is your favourite beer that you brew?

Probably our various lagers. It's so hard to get bottled lager in the UK which is anything like the stuff you get in Franconia, so we rely on this stuff to fill our stone krugs during the summer.

Do you have any plans or ambitions to turn your hobby into your career?

Doesn't everyone? We daydream, but we don't want to do anything professionally until we really know what we're doing. There are too many slightly amateurish microbreweries out there for us to go wading in to the market. Given how little time we have for brewing, it's going to be many years yet.

Of the beers you brew, which is your favourite to drink?

Think the answer is the same as for 5 above – the lagers we make consistently make us smile.

How do you decide on the kind of beer to brew and formulate the recipe?

BOAK: we tend to make sure we have a fairly broad range of ingredients in store and then see how we feel on brew day. I'll usually formulate a recipe using Qbrew (http://www.usermode.org/code.html), with a stack of brewing books and references for inspiration.

What is the most unusual beer you have brewed?

We've found that the more unusual beers are our least successful, generally speaking. We've experimented with raspberry and blackberry wheat beers; we've put star anise into strong ales; and added spice to stout. Our must successful experiment was probably the use of sherry-soaked oak chips in a couple of super-strong beers, which added a whole extra dimension without much hassle.

If you could do a pro-am brew, what would you brew and with which brewery?

Cantillon! We'd have to move to Brussels for several years, of course, and we'd make something like a framboise but with blackberries from Walthamstow Marshes.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Who Gose There?

It sometimes seems as though Reinheitsgebot is held up as some paragon of beer virtue, in much the same way as some people think all keg beers are inherently evil, and yet it was the misuse of the Bavarian Beer Purity Law which saw the decimation of the German brewing culture which had more in common with Belgium than Bavaria in the post unification years. The combined forces of Reinhesitsgebot and pilsner style beer wiped out practically everything except a clutch of beers including Altbier and Gose.

Last year when Boak and Bailey came over to Prague as part of their whistle stop central European tour, they generously gave myself and Pivní Filosof a bottle of Goedecke's D?llnitzer Ritterguts Gose each, mine of which sat in my cellar until very recently. Gose has a fascinating history, which you can read a bit about here, and has some distinctly non-Reinheitsgebot ingredients, such as salt and coriander. Thus it was with a great sense of curiosity that I popped open the bottle.


As you can see from the picture, the beer poured a light golden colour with a thin white head, which disappeared rather quickly. The nose was really unusual, spicy like a wheat beer, laced with citrus fruit, in particular oranges and also a distinct smell of sour milk - I have to admit that I wasn't sure if it was supposed to be that way and so I texted Evan to make sure. In terms of taste, again there was a citrusy twang, but like the flavour you get with soluble vitamin tablets, like minerals. The thing I found surprising was just how salty it tasted, almost as though the beer had been made with sea water.

Certainly a very interesting beer, but not one I could imagine drinking regularly. Having said that I will try it again when the opportunity presents itself, because I am aware that tastes change and you never know when it might just all click for me.

Beyond January

Dry January is over, but my beer fast continues. Well, it continues until Friday. As a general rule I only drink at the weekend, thus my win...

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