Last night saw the folk of Manchester given the rare opportunity to meet and sample the wares of a bona fide Dutch microbrewer. Emelisse aren’t too well known around these parts, but are a major player in the burgeoning Dutch scene and some of their beers have appeared on the bar in the Port St Beer House.
The reason for head brewer Kees Bubberman & co to make the trip from their base in Kamperland all the way to the Marble Arch was simple: beer. They’re here to brew some collaboration beers with the Marble brewery. The most interesting of which promises to be Earl Grey IPA. And yes, it is brewed using Earl Grey tea.
But what would any meet-the-brewer event be without some sampling? So, in no particular order, and without the use of a safety net, here’s some of the ones I recall sampling.
Blond: Hazy with a sharp and refreshing bite. Brewed with Nelson Sauvin hops. A favourite amongst many, including me.
Rachbier: Made with five different malts, this was less smoky than you might expect, but still not for me. Lovers of this style seemed to appreciate it, though.
Holland Oats: This is currently on draught at the Marble Arch. It’s an amber ale made with toasted oats and apple syrup. This probably explains the initial sweet toasted flavour and slightly spiced nut finish. Not at all bad for 6.6%.
Black IPA: Everyone’s interpretation of this style seems to differ. Here the emphasis was on the roast flavour with bitterness coming through later.
Espresso Stout: This was an interesting, very strong beer. It really gave you the full on, intense, espresso experience. It was explained that this is because it is made with a heavy dose of Italian coffee beans. An interesting comparison was made to the Flying Dog version which uses Ethiopian beans for a much smoother taste.
Of course this is just one night’s tasting. Purely in the interests of brewing science, I will continue to sample on your behalf.