I wrote this blog in real time, as I drank these beers and met the brewers & staff from the breweries. Please forgive any grammer/spelling issues… here goes…
Beer #1 – Marble Brewery/Emilesse Collaboration Earl Grey IPA
Inspired by a De Molen beer, the idea is not to be too bitter, 40 IBU’s, 3kgs of Earl Grey and lots of Citra for Aroma. This is a brand new beer, they don’t even have labels yet! Amazing piney hop smell, smooth mouthfeel, very drinkable at 6.8%, the tea has a really interesting tanic finish to the beer replacing the hop bitterness.
Beer #2 – Roosters Babyface Assasin Single Hop IPA
Limited Edition especially for us! 100% Citra & Pale Malt, served with a sparkler on handpull as a Yorkshire beer should! Much softer aroma than the Marble, with a Citra hop upfront and a sweeter middle than I was expecting. At 6.1% this is very drinkable, more so than any beer of this style & ABV than I would be used to.
Beer #3 – Great Heck Brewery Stormin Norman American style IPA
A darker colour from the Roasted Barley with Cascade & Columbus for Aroma. Another strong IPA at 6.5%, exceptionally, mouth puckeringly bitter. This is right up my street, the barley adds a bit of balance to the big bitter finish, but each searingly dry sip leaves you gagging for another.
Beer #4 – Slaters Top Totty 4.0%
Controversially banned from the House of Commons. At 38 IBU’s it’s interesting to note that Slaters consider this a bitter beer, whereas Marble noted that 40 IBU’s was not very bitter! They asked us to comment on the beer and not the label, so I’ll ignore the crappy pump clip with the blonde in a bra and tell you that they use hops from the same farm every year, they add a touch of wheat. To me it’s not the best example of a hoppy golden session ale, but it’s quite drinkable.
Beer #5 – Camden Brewery USA Hells 4.6%
Their normal hells with just American hops. Columbus, Cascade, Centennial, Citra, Simcoe. This pours cloudy (deliberately) 20 IBU’s. This is a high in aroma, soft and low in bitterness. Been too busy crooning over the new branding to write anything about this beer. However, take my word for it, it’s bloody lovely!
Beer #6 – Adnams Ghostship
A favourite of mine anyway. 4.5% a pale ale brewed with 3 malts, rye crystal, pale & caramalts. Chinook bittering hops, Motueka added next followed by a late Citra addition. Dry hopped with Citra too, four hop additions. This is exceptionally drinkable, very smooth, well balanced, the toffee malt notes really help make this a more balanced hoppy beer than some of the others we’ve tried.
Beer #7 – Innis & Gunn Scottish Pale Ale 4.1%
Currently only available in Sweden. The brand was born by accident after Grants whisky approached Caledonian Brewery. They now oak age all of their beers. This is aged in Bourbon barrels, this is intended to be more hop lead, more of a summer beer. To me this tastes like pudding, very sweet, very vanilla lead flavours, the dry finish doesn’t have much aroma, mainly just bitterness. Not usually a fan of Innis & Gunn, and this is sadly no different.
Beer #8 – Leeds Brewery Hellfire 5.2%
This is a bitter beer with Centennial & Willamete. Armoa is from Centennial, Willamete & First Gold. This is a filtered, pasteurised bottle beer with added carbonation. reminiscent of a good premium lager, this is a great beer to enjoy with a BBQ in the summer. Fantastic branding and general consensus is that this might appeal to late night bars & restaurants, why shouldn’t we be able to get great beer in those establishments.
Beer #9 – Otley Oxymoron 5.5%
This Black IPA is well known to me and has brought back some great memories of my day at Red Fox brewing Foxymoron recently. After apologising to the brewery for semi stealing their naming ideas, I got back to enjoying one of my favourite styles of beers. Loads of chocolate malt flavours followed up with big citrus hop aromas. Heaven.
Beer #10 – Brains Dark 4.1%
A dark mild, this is what I started drinking ‘when I were a lad’, not this particular beer, but this style. Loads of chocolate malt and very soft. Recently won Worlds Best Dark Mild! This has Styrian Goldings hops and is perhaps a touch more bitter than the style would usually have. Very drinkable, and for me a nostalgic style of beer. I’d prefer to drink this from cask without the carbonation, but as the 10th beer in 50 minutes of the speed drinking/blogging challenge I’m surprised how drinkable this is.
Done. Thank you, favourite beer? Oxymoron