Friday, 2 August 2013

Brewery Roundup: Little Creatures and Co.

Hey all, welcome back. Been a long time since my last post, a combination of busyness, laziness and Melo not giving me the photosness. So today I'm doing a roundup of all the beers made by Little Creatures and their associated smaller breweries, namely White Rabbit and Pipsqueak. We tried to include as many of the Little Creatures seasonal beers as we could get our hands on, but they're definitely difficult to find, and we had to settle for the latest two. On to the roundup!

Ice included because we forgot to stick it in the fridge!

We started out with the Pipsqueak Apple cider. Sweet apple flavour to start off fades to a more dry, crisp body. With a super-light body and prickly carbonation, I'm sure it'd be great on a warm day... Shame we were doing the tastings on a cold night.

The colour of the mats makes these beers look bizarro

Next up was the Little Creatures Pilsener. Clocking in at 27 IBU and 4.6% ABV, it pours a clear, light gold with minimal white head. The nose is a mix of sweet, honeyish malt and the 'lager yeast' character that so many lagers exhibit. The taste followed suit, starting light and sweet and moving to a bready, classic lager body, with mild bitterness. With it's light, crisp body and strong prickly carbonation, it's a refreshing, classic pilsener, and a great addition to the Little Creatures lineup

Pay no attention to the magically appearing bottles

Thirdly, we had the White Rabbit White Ale. It pours a clouded, lemony colour, with a 'soapy looking' pure white head. The nose is a mix of banana esters and phenol, stemming from the Belgian yeasts used. The body is fruity and slightly funky with hints of phenolic spice, and floral notes throughout. The body is light and soft, with moderate carbonation, overall a mainstream interpretation of a decidedly non-mainstream beer style.

Overall a little light for me, but refreshing all the same

Fourth, we sampled the Little Creatures Bright Ale, a golden 'Australian Style Ale'. With a faint, caramelly nose, reminiscent of German beers, and a body similarly reminiscent with light floral hops and a pale German malt body, it's a refreshing, light ale that would do you well as a way to cool off after a long day in the sun.

The classic. Everyone should try this beer.

Next, we went with the classic Little Creatures Pale Ale. At 39 IBU, it's fairly bitter for a commercial beer, and definitely the most flavoursome beer you'll find in a lot of bars. Pouring a clouded golden-amber colour, the nose is sweet and fruity, a mix of crystal malt and American 'Big-C' hops. Flavours of citrus and pine blend with the honeyish malt in the body, and fade to a final acidic bitterness. Overall a great pale ale, and a great starting point for anyone looking to get into craft beer.

I want to meet this Roger character and tell him to put more hops in this beer!

After that, headed toward darker beers with the Rogers Beer, an English style Amber Ale. Pouring a partly-clouded deep amber colour, the nose is a mix of caramel and honey, giving away it's malt bill of crystal and caramalts. A reasonably light taste with slight citrus and floral hop notes, a light to medium body, and a comparatively low 3.8% ABV, you end up with a very sessionable beer of which you could easily knock down a lot.

Can't really see it in this photo, but the colour of this beer is absolutely gorgeous

Next step was the Little Creatures 'Shepherd's Delight' Red IPA, the first of their Small Batch beers I had the pleasure of tasting. Pouring a burnt orange colour with frothy, off-white head, it sports a punchy, fruity nose, hinting at its high hop content. Flavourwise, on first sip it's a bittersweet mix of malt and hops, leading to a sweet malty middle with distinct notes of grapefruit and pine, ending in a lingering, 'marmalade' bitterness. With its full body and light carbonation, it's a delicious IPA, though most definitely not sessionable.

Our second foray down the Rabbit hole

Landing squarely in dark beer land, our next drink was the White Rabbit Dark Ale. Pouring an opaque, deep brown colour with lightly browned head, the aroma is of roasty dark malt, with hints of dark fruit. Flavours of raisin and dark malt blend together nicely to deliver a rich, smooth beer experience. With a full body and only the tiniest amount of carbonation, it's a true dark ale, almost straying into porter territory. Delicious.

Smooth and Creamy you say?
Yes Robert, Smooth and Creamy

Finally, we rounded off the tastings with a favourite of ours, the Little Creatures 'Mr Obadiah' Rye Porter. This beer was actually the inspiration for one of our beers, the Chocolate Oatmeal Rye Oatmealless Porter. Clocking in at 6.9% ABV and 55 IBU, it's a serious heavy-hitter of a beer. Pouring a deep brown/black with deep brown head, it's aroma is rich with nots of bittersweet cocoa and espresso, and a backbone of rye spice. Through the body, there's a smooth, chocolatey flavour, with a strong note of spicy rye malt and hints of coffee and bittering hops to cut through the richness of it all. With an almost syrupy body and a 'milky' mouthfeel, this is a truly opulent beer, and it's absolutely my favourite beer from Little Creatures to date.

Meet the whole crew!

Now in wondrous animated form!

That's all folks! Hope you liked the reviews! Hoping I can do some more roundups like this in the near future. I have a complete range of Stone and Wood beers in the fridge, as well as a near complete range of a couple of other breweries. If you have a beer or brewery you'd like reviewed, leave a comment and let me know!

No comments:

Post a Comment