Before I get on that, I should note a few beers I have been having recently. On Tuesday I snuck into Purvis just after a rep from Tooborac Brewery came in with their Pale Ale they have started bottling. Damien decided to crack one while I was there, and has to say, while it is easy drinking with a good malt texture, the beer overall left me a bit wanting. There was quite a bit of sulphur on the nose, and was only as it warmed up that this dissipated to show a very slight fruitiness. Damien noted it had a sort of wheat beer feel, taste and look, and have to agree, it did seem a bit cloudy. Too be honest, I could not find much of note to say about this beer.
After my Southern Tier tasting a couple of weeks back, I have been anticipating further beers to come from this brewer, and Damien recommended we share a bottle of their Phin & Matt, with Damien describing it as smelling and tasting like wort. While there is a little more refined malt flavour up front, there is still a dank depth of malt sweetness that I do normally taste in an unfermented beer. While this does sit a bit heavy to midpalate, from here, the hops come through to nicely cleanse and show this beer really is a beer.
Later that night I hit the Royston with my brother for a parma. Upon seeing the Hargreaves Hill, Russian Imperial Stout (11.7%). I found quite a bit of chocolate when I first tasted it cold, but big malt body to cove your tongue quite well. There was also some liqourice before the alcohol hit. I was impressed to find that even with this high an alcohol content, the taste did not spike much. However, with that high an alcohol, its flavour came earlier on the palate as it warmed up, and while the texture held, the malt flavour was lost to the licorice. Towards the end, the warmth from the alcohol was going straight to my head, and was happy not to have another beer after it. Still, pretty impressive all round I thought.
Yesterday after being rained on during work, I stopped off at Mountain Goat (I have work there for Monday and Tuesday...yay!), I had a couple of beers with one of the brewers Craig (giving me a chance to talk about brewing courses with him). Seeing they have a new Coffee IPA, just had to give that a go. It is an interesting combo seeing both coffee and hops can produce bitterness which may make it hard to discern in the beer. However, they have tried to bring body and roastedness from the coffee, and let the citrus hops cleans. In terms of flavour, the coffee was quite diminished, with only the slightest of coffee roast at the back. Would be interesting to see a bit more coffee come through, but as the beer is a few weeks old, the coffee may be the first flavour to leave it. Then, seeing the Bigfoot Stout is back after a couple of years, I had to try it again. I think it has actually improved since last I tried it. Really good dark malt body up front, and with 7.3%, reminded me a bit like the stout from the night before. Will have to go back for that again.
Ok, as for a new routine, I have gone the lucky dip into one of my boxes of beer. Having seen a Honey Porter bottle while at Team Harrod's place, I was happy to see Taverner's Honey Porter come out. However, not reading the label before pouring quite a bit of yeasty sediment came out. The head dissipated very quickly and it looked like coke. There is quite a bit of artificial sweet smell over the dark malt. There is a very thin body on the beer, and the smell comes through quite a lot in flavour. The honey flavour is not as artificially sweet as in the smell, and there is a bit of a malt backbone to help it taste like beer...yes, taste like beer. To be honest, it takes me back to a lot of the german dark beers I had nearly a year ago, and has me thinking of coke. The honey does got very slightly sour towards the back but apart from that, the thinness in the beer means it does not linger long in aftertaste. This may be the best thing about this beer...
Anyway, not a great start to my attempt at a new routine, but hopefully it means there will be more stories to be told here, and more regularly,