Wednesday, 1 October 2014

The Last Week and a half in Beer - September 22nd - October 1st

So after an extended hiatus, I'm back once again on my beer blog, decided that I should actually do some better commentary than my 50 words or less Untappd reviews. Also, my beer fridge is overflowing right now, and hopefully if I start blogging again I'll have an excuse to drink more of it

Literally overflowing with craft beer
So without further ado, let's start with a great beer from my Favorite Kiwi brewery, Garage Project. Their Pan Pacific Amber Ale sat in my fridge for a few weeks after I bought it. I was in the mood for hoppier IPAs, a few of which I'll review further down, and kept bypassing it because I assumed it'd just be a mostly malty affair with no real interesting hops. But a couple of nights ago I gave it a chance, and boy was I wrong.

Even the label is amber

Straight out of the bottle it smells super malty, real toffee aromas coming through, along with some solid coconut, but some tropical fruit is hiding in there as well. Pours a rich amber colour with a slightly browned head, as you can see above.

The initial flavour is of biscuit malt and oats, but then the hop bitterness cuts through to stop the malt becoming overwhelming. The blend of Galaxy and Motoueka creates a great tropical fruit flavour, and blends nicely with the hint of coconut that comes through at the end.

Overall a fantastic, interesting beer that I'm kicking myself for letting sit in my fridge for so long.

Next up, we stick with the tropical fruit theme, but double it, with the Liberty Brewing C!tra Double IPA

May have overfilled the glass a tad

Out of the bottle looks like your standard American IPA, a golden orange colour with frothy white head, but the hop aroma is overwhelming! Passionfruit, Citrus, and Grapefruit all come through leaving no room for any discernible malt character

The flavour follows suit, almost like drinking a tropical fruit juice rather than a beer at first, while the bitterness slowly catches up. Very slick on the palate, you do get a bit of malt character to help sweeten up the flavour, but the hops really do dominate.

A great showcase of what you can do with Citra hops!

Next, we take a sojourn away from the hoppy, and into the land of yeast driven beers with the Ommegang Hennepin - Farmhouse Saison

It had a cork!

In the glass it's a hazy straw colour with plenty of thick, off white head that smells somewhat of apricot, a little earthy and has a distinct hint of farmhouse funk.

The first thing I noticed on tasting was the mouthfeel, more like a champagne than a beer with plenty of tiny bubbles throughout. The flavour is citrusy and a tad grassy, with a definite note of funk, but it's not overpowering like in a lot of other saisons. Also definitely doesn't taste like it's nearly 8% ABV, it's hidden by the freshness of the flavours.

Overall an extremely refreshing Saison.

Finally, we head back into the world of hops with the Emelisse TIPA

Not pictured: 10% ABV warning

The phrase "Triple IPA" is always mildly intimidating, as you expect a beast in both ABV and bitterness, and the Emelisse doesn't disappoint. Clocking in at 10% ABV and a smidgeon over 100 IBU, she's an IPA to wrestle with.

Pours a deep reddy amber with sparse head, the aroma is a mix of grapefruit from the hops, a little caramel malt and a good measure of alcohol heat. On the palate it's similar, with the caramel of the malt dominating over the alcohol, allowing the hops to shine through with a bit of fruit to start, and a solid whack of bitterness on the followthrough.

Overall, a great TIPA that's not overpowered by alcohol heat, but rather a balanced mixture of malty body and strong hop bitterness.

That's all I've got time to write this week, but I'll try to make sure I write a new post at least once a fortnight, and hopefully I can write about some of our upcoming beers from work!


  1. How many beer glasses do you have?

    1. Probably 20-30, I have pairs of 7-8 different styles, a few steins and a few brewery pint glasses. Gotta get that glassware

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