Monday, November 18, 2013

Bairds Brewing - Single Take Session Ale

Monday afternoon, its hot, the weekend was too short and I've got 101 things to do but I've always got time for a beer. Which is why I've still got 101 things to do. Anyway today I'm sampling a beer from Japan by Baird brewing. It's bottle conditioned and long travelled so hopefully stored well in transit and not suffering too much.

Pouring cloudy amber orange with a persistent thin white head, it looks absolutely mouth watering. Aroma is complex but not punchy. There's grassy hops, citrus and sweetness on the nose with hints of yeast. 

First mouthful is refreshing, nice grassy bitterness and hints of spice. The belgian yeast really hits the back of the palete but isn't dominating. It seems a nice balance of pale ale and belgian ale with a little effervescence to bubble it all together. Really lovely but not best served ice cold let it warm up a little before pouring. It improves with every mouthful, delicious with some moderately spicy dishes.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Paderborner - Pilsner

Original German Beer! 

So as it says on the can its original german beer, which is good to know I guess. I wouldn't want to be drinking a non-original beer, I think that violates some rule of the craft beer enthusiast code book. 
However I get a bit suspicious when the ingredients include hop extract. 

Currently I'm more attuned to the NZ styles of pilsner with the gorgeous floral hop aromas and bitterness levels that really satisfy. Having recently finished a box of Tuatara Pilsner I'm not sure how this brew is going to compare.

There's hints of a herbal hop aroma, and a bunch of malt bouncing out of the glass. I get a lager vibe more than anything. Its not extremely malt forward on drinking though, the bitterness is there as soon as it hits your tongue. A really nice amount of carbonation makes it great for drinking after a 90 minute hike through the bush, but its not crisp enough to be the ultimate post exertion refreshment. A strange little aftertaste, but not really off putting. Kinda doughy on the finish and barely enough hop extract to keep it drinkable.  

Friday, November 08, 2013

Renaissance Enlightenment - The Age of Raisin

Here's a smart little offering from Enlightenment Brewing. The age of Raisin. 

It certainly smells like raisins, and a bit like walking through the back rooms on a winery tour when the guide decides to go off plan.The malt aroma's are lovely. I guess I'm used to malt aroma's hiding shyly behind the hop aroma but in this beer I get a fresh cake smell, a golden syrup sultana cake thats maybe gone a little crispy round the edges. Great deep colour, loads of red in there which is occasionally highlighted in the dismal spring light of this rainy day.

Little to no head and sparse carbonation but upon drinking its more lively in the mouth than in the glass.   First impressions are definitely raisins, but with a balancing acidity. I'm actually reminded of Fuller's ESB. Just that hint of winey raisins. But this beer has a little more acidity and it finishes smooth on delicious  biscuity malts with a very slight, oh so slight, hint of butter. Its like drinking toasted sultana bread. Hints of caramel and toffee sugar delight me. I really like the mouth feel of this beer. It starts zingy and finishes nice and round. The belgian yeast adds a little spice, which just makes itself known on the finish merging with the heat of the alcohol.

Once again an excellent beer that I can imagine pairing with food, a creme brûlée with its caramelised sugar would be excellent here, or I think it has enough flavour to hold up to a sweet gamey meat dish like duck or even venison.

6.5% 500ml bottle.