Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Of course it's organic, it's food.

Ignoring for the moment my personal distaste for the misappropriation of the word organic, I have here something from the minimal school of label design.  Or I suppose you could also say, this was clearly not bottled in Belgium.

Chocolate Marble - 5.5%
Marble Beers have possibly the cleanest design of bottle labels out there, backed up by an equally minimal website.  It appears that their brewery is attached to a pub in Manchester called The Marble Arch Inn and that they have certified themselves as "organic" as well as vegetarian.

What we have with Chocolate Marble is a Stout like beer which actually does have a faint chocolate taste.  Delivered in the 500ml bottle it requires the larger glass and is a dark brown colour.

Bottle conditioned mean you have to be a little careful pouring it and while it suggests to ensure it's cooled not chilled, I think it would actually benefit from a little time in the fridge if you lack a suitably cool storage area as I do.

A good inoffensive beer that went down rather well on a chilly evening.

Friday, 25 November 2011

Super Williams Brothers

The Williams Brothers Brewery is a micro brewery in the centre of Scotland.  They produce a range of historic ales, they have developed over the impressive 20 years they have been operating.  Along side that they have expanded their range of regular beers, one of which I've been drinking this evening.

Midnight Sun - 5.6%
Yes this is another porter styled beer, which since starting this blog I've discovered I really enjoy, especially now the nights are drawing in and it's a little chilled out.

To look at Midnight Sun it is a dark brown with a dark cream coloured head, it's a little washed out by the flash in the photo.  Taking a deep breath over it there is a gentle aroma of chocolate.

The roasted flavour is especially pleasant leaving a pleasant toffee sensation in the mouth.  It is a smooth and surprisingly light drink, this bottle being a pint rather than the 330ml size, necessitating the larger glass for this occasion, and by the end of the bottle it's not lying heavily on the stomach.

Midnight Sun can be purchased direct from the brewery at £16.84 for a case of 12.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

And now for something completely the same

I have to admit that I am a sucker for an interesting bottle.  Be they painted strange colours or odd shapes.  It was this urge that lead me to tonight's offering from Estonia.

Viru 5.0%
Named for Virumaa, formerly a country, but now a pair of counties in Estonia, and it's brewed in Tartu, which is is in neither of them.

Viru is a lager and after one sip I was thinking of Fosters, but in a good way.  This is the beer that Fosters is trying to taste like, with a nice gentle flavour, refreshing, and no hideous wet sock after taste.

Also this is likely the cheapest most inexpensive beers I've gone through lately and can thoroughly recomend it for when summer rolls around again.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Thin and watery

But frankly just what I needed at the time.

I spent a couple of weeks away on a ridiculously lavish holiday which included, to my delight, a free bar.  Once I recovered from the shock I set about exploring the beer options.  And it appears that the Caribbean it something of a one trick pony.

They do Lager.

Just Lager.

I can certainly see why.  It was punishingly hot for someone like me who is used to winters actually getting cold, where water has been known to get hard outside without the influence of a freezer drawer.

Wadadli is the original name for Antigua (as in pre Columbus) and was used for the local beer.  Sadly it's not quite so local any more and is now produced on St Vincent for cost reasons.

Red Stripe
Red Stripe is far more famous and comes from Jamaica originally but is produced under license from the Antigua Brewery.

There isn't a huge amount to separate these two drinks in terms of flavour or look.  Both are pale and fizzy and I would be hard pressed to identify one over the other in a blind test.

What they are though is massively refreshing in a hot day provided you drink them before they get warm.

Friday, 11 November 2011

Who or what is Alice Porter?

Well I'd say it's a porter with a highly pretentious label.  Brew Dog was founded in 2007 and have set about making a strange collection of beers, frankly if I can ever spare the £30 or so I would love to give Tactical Nuclear Penguin a try.

Alice Porter - 6.2%
But enough about beers I haven't drunk on to one I have.

Alice Porter is surprisingly light, I would even say watery if that weren't a massive disservice to it's taste, more it's highly drinkable despite its background.

How they have managed to get so much flavour into a porter without making it excessively rich is something a few other breweries could stand to learn.

Alexander Wines stocks it but it doesn't appear on Brew Dogs website any more so I don't know how much longer this one is around for.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Great Minds Drink Alike

Somewhere in the wild outdoors there lives a creature of legend.  Spoken of in hushed tones around camp fires miles from civilisation.  Tall and dark the Yeti roams the high places of Nepal.

Or rather it would if it actually existed.

Yeti Imperial Stout - 9.5%
Instead I have this Yeti to drink, brought to us by Great Divide Brewing Co, one of Americas most decorated micro breweries.

Another dark and viscous beer, this one an Imperial Stout, it is filed with chocolate flavour and an impressive 9.5% which is masked by the big taste but felt about half way through the bottle.

Not a cheap beer by any stretch of the imagination but you definitely get your moneys worth.  Stick with the one bottle for a night, it's rather filling.

Friday, 4 November 2011

Pink Elephants on Parade

Brewed by the Belgian Family Brewery in Brouwerij Huyghe, which I wouldn't know where to begin pronouncing, this exciting and complex beer has a rich caramel scent, and boy can you taste the alcohol.

Delirium Nocturnum - 8.5% 
Triple fermented with live yeast added to the bottle to perform final fermentation there the flavour will change depending now how long it has been left.

I love the bottle this comes in. Under the grey paint with blue flecks is a normal brown glass bottle but the colours are so distinctive. They go especially well with the pink elephants that dance around the bottle.

Poured out this is a dark ale with a tan head with light carbonation. Thankfully the bubbles are not intrusive nor excessive and the overall taste is smooth. If it weren't for the high alcohol content I could drink this all evening.