Monday, September 20, 2010

Night 17 and Day 18: Happy Gatherings and Sad Places

Hi All,

feeling a bit heavy at the moment (no, not from Guinness. That would be a good sort of heavy), as just got back into Berlin from my first experience in a space that was used as a concentration camp during the second world war. I won't bring down the mood of the blog with my thoughts from this experience, but will just venture to say the experience has made me feel solemnly frustrated at the past and potential of humanity (myself included of course). If there was a brewery on that site, whatever soul it would have had was lost when they used it in this way.

Still, am happy to juxtapose this with great tidings of beer and friends that were gathered together last night. James and I did a beer shop (there you go mate, another pic of you in the blog) and there ended up being a dinner at Tina and Joe's, so meant more people to hang out and drink with. Dinner was great (particularly the pumpkin and walnut. what a combo of flavours!), and can say we had an interesting journey with the beers as well.

Helles Lagerbier Hell – just a nice light one to share with a couple of the boys before heading to dinner at Tina and Joe’s. light blonde malt flavour with a rolling rise of hops before it cleanses at the end. Pretty standard I would have thought, but a standard it seems hard for many pils to achieve.

JJ Prum Graacher Himmelreich Kabinett 2008 – good to share this with the gang at Tina and Joe’s at the start of the night while the palate is still fresh. It is there most basic wine, so noticed it had a bit of an acidic flavour towards to back palate, but still has the residual sugar and soft, delicate taste that Mick and I like so much from this winery

Radeberger Pilsner – to get the beer journey going, we had this lighter beer that I don't think the gang in Berlin hadn’t had before. And I can understand why, seems very light and tasteless. Mind you, I was eating delicious food at the time of the trying it, but for a pilsner not to be able to cleanse says enough.

Berliner Kindl Bock Hell – bit darker than the pils with a nice caramel malt flavour on the front that rolls into the 7% alcohol. Good balance of the two flavours and no alcohol aftertaste, that could come from a lighter beer with this high an alcohol content.

Schofferhofer Dunkles Hefeweizen – nice step up in sweetness from the previous bock but with some darker flavours from the malt. A lot darker than what I thought would come from a wheat beer but maybe just used more barely malt than other hef’s.

Paulaner Hefe-Weizbier Dunkle – much lighter than the previous dark wheat, so not so much of the sweetness, but is replaced with the bubblegum yeastiness that I can get a bit of in European beers. Interesting to see so much difference in two beers of the same style.

Konig Ludwig Dunkel – returned to this beer to see if I got something else from it. And speaking to James over it, we both agreed there was a spice (pepper) flavour coming over the top of the malt to create an unusal spectrum of flavour across the tongue. Maybe a beer I don’t personally like for it, but can’t deny it is very different and worthy of trying for this.

Taking out the Prum, I have to say the sweet flavour and nice balance of flavours from the Berliner and Schofferhofer were my picks from the night. Thanks to Tina and Joe for allowing me to crash their dinner, the gang for coming on the journey and adding your input (which has helped me make my own notes), and for Tina getting the smallest glass in the world for me to drink a beer from.

Also, personally, thanks to everyone who is putting up with my beer talk and actually encouraging me to continue pursuing it and take it even further. I appreciate all you creative Berlin musical/visual/etc artists labeling me a 'beer artist' so I can fit in. Here is to another night cheersing to the aussies in Berlin,


PS: Don't have any beer in the fridge and no shops are open to get any. Still, after today, a Bailey's may be in order so I don't get depressed about the world.

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