So the morning after the night before, I did manage to get a few notes down on the new beers we tried last night. Thanks to everyone at Stewart's housewarming to welcome back the Beef Stew Palace, and for adding any comments to me while we were drinking.
Stass and I actually started drinking early by opening 4 more of our explosive raspberry stouts, and our montage of openings is coming along well (good one stass. psst, put it up here mate). still, the beer itself is not tasting as good as it did. the Guinness-esque texture is gone, as it seems the raspberry has watered down the texture. pretty disappointing after have such a good start to drinking them. ah well, alcohol is alcohol.
Anyway, while the night was filled with drinking out malt and choc home brews, a guinness here and there, and finishing with a lovely supershine, the beers we tried for the first time are below.
1) Red Hill Imperial Stout (8.1%) - dark brown with a smell of coffee/roasted malt/choc. there is a slight over carbonation on the tongue, but then the coffee comes through. normally i don't appreciate coffee taste in beer, but it was quite inoffensive without a smokey finish or bitter tang. it mixed well with choc flavouring and had a decent texture. as it moves through the palate, the alcohol warms on the tongue but there is a nice clean finish with slight choc which was great. Everyone seemed to agree this was a good beer. I quite liked the balance of everything going on in it. would like to try this on tap. For once i agree with the description of the beer that is on the label!!!!
2) Hitachino Nest Real Ginger Brew (7%) - I have had this one before, but my taste buds were shot by the time i got to it, so was good to get this more Stew as he likes a good alcoholic ginger ale, and give me a chance to try it again with a fresher palate. it took a while for the smell of ginger to come through, but did have a slight caramel smell (from the malt) which helps compliment and build to the ginger smell and flavour. therefore, the ginger is not too intense overall and the flavour doesn't 'spike' on your tongue. it also came with a good texture, which Xani (our celebrity drinker for the night) described as 'syrupy' to me.
3) Pardubicky Porter (8%) - This Czech Republic Porter was a beer i really wanted to try, to see if czech is just good at pils and not so much on the darker styles of beer. There is a choc and slight alc smell, and whereas the choc is slight when it comes to flavour, the alcohol warms on the tongue and becomes more prominent over subsequent mouthfuls. I didn't get this much, but Stass and Joel (and I think Xani as well) did get dark fruit flavour and smell.
4) Rochefort 10 (11.3%) - the blockbuster on the night, and one i really wanted to try after the trappist beer tasting from last week where we had the 8. my god, it had the same orgasmic inducing smell the 8 had, but unlike the 8, the flavour stood out more to be more like the smell, which was exactly what i wanted to get from it. This has become my favourite trappist beer so far. by this time we had this beer, tipsiness was coming on, so some of my notes read as "One of the best smelling beers I have ever had. warming alcohol gets me mellow. I like it!!! my fave trappist". This one is going on the beer wall of 'noteworthy' beers.
5) Hunter Chocolate Porter (5.4%) - I was a little dubious of this one because it comes from my home area of NSW, which is known for wines, and the only well known brewery is Bluetongue (owned by Coke Cola. enough said). However, it had won a gold medal in stouts at the latest Australian International Beer Awards, so thought it was worth a go. Luckily we had chocolate cupcakes when we got to having the beer, so they complimented it well. However, the beer itself is not much better than our own attempt at a chocolate porter, with only a bit less cocoa to diminish the 'dusty' flavour and texture in ours. Joel and Stass did sense some smokiness from it as well that i didn't taste. However, I was being harassed by 'someone' with a camera while i was trying to taste it, so that may have diverted my attention. either way, it was a disappointing experience drinking this beer.
So, while the last beer did put a bit of a dampener, we managed to pull the journey out of the fire and finish on a Supershine that did just as I wanted, got me ready for Twister. Still, I lost the game to Xani, who i may remind was drinking pineapple juice all night...
Anyway, a great night and an interesting beer journey. Thanks to all that came on it with me. And seeing we didn't get through all in the photo, there will be another beer journey to go on soon. keep an eye out for belgium (lambic focused) beer tasting coming soon!