Showing posts from September, 2015

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Brewdog Magic Rock Stone Dog

Well, well, well. This one certainly comes with some pedigree and being Brewdog it isn’t backward in coming forward. Yes, it arrives with hyperbole not seen since, erm, probably the last Brewdog beer. They say: “A hoppy ménage a trios of epic proportions, Magic Stone Dog is a rustic farmhouse pale ale mash up. Brewed in collaboration with Greg Koch (Stone) and Rich and Stu (Magic Rock) just before our AGM, Magic Stone Dog has the best qualities of a saison and a pale ale, combined. The nose has a citrus punch straight from the US West Coast, boasting zest, pineapple and orange notes, offset against a big spicy clove warmth courtesy of the saison yeast. This continues into the flavour, where the best of both worlds combine - orange, spice, a touch of lemony tartness - and sit alongside a thirst- quenching dryness and refreshing effervescence. This bright, zesty, subtly tart, Belgian-inspired brew is the perfect beer to enjoy during the Indian summer we all know is definitely coming. De…

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Donnington Double Donn

Due to a special request, yes really, this morning’s foray into the bottled wonders of the beer world is another Donnington Brewery effort. This one presents itself as more traditional than its Gold stablemate and is made with Styrian Goldings and Fuggles. It’s dedicated to Claude Arkell, the owner of Donnington, who died in 2007. It’s a 500ml bottle and comes in at 4.4%. It poured a traditional copper-hued with good carbonation and a weak tan head that quickly dissolved. The aroma is nutty with sweet malt and, surprisingly, a touch of orange rind. It’s medium-bodied with plenty of caramel and toffee notes and a slight earthiness. The cereal malt undertone is balanced by a bitter-sweet, slightly citrus fruit finish.
Tyson says: It’s hard to get too excited about this beer and it's not one I’d choose to slug all night down the Dog & Duck. However, it’s a solid effort from the days of pre-craft and if the aim was to produce a beer that a traditionalist such as Claude Arkell would…

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Donnington Gold

Donnington Brewery is a very traditional family run brewery based in rather idyllic surroundings in Stow-on-the-Wold, Cheltenham. Brewing started in 1865 and they still use the same spring for water and even the original waterwheel is still in use. For many years only two beers were brewed regularly but, like many traditional outfits, in recent times they have gradually expanded their portfolio. Donnington Gold is now part of their core range.
Traditional brewing means traditional bottling, so no namby-pamby 330ml bottles here. It’s a solid 500ml and comes in at 4%. It’s a golden ale and, unlike some so-called golden ales, it actually did pour golden. Carbonation was good but the off-white head quickly dissolved to leave just a small covering film
The aroma was quite subtle with some biscuit malt and a slight sweet orange note. At first the beer seemed a little on the thin side but the flavour did come through on the second gulp. There’s a definite digestive buzz to it but some citrus t…

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Brewdog Electric India

It’s definitely away from the basics today with a little number from the people that are now referred to as “the Scottish brewery”. A bit like Hamlet, you’re not supposed to say their name now. No, I don’t know why, either. Those crazy craft kids, eh?
Official description: “One day. One brewery. Seven thousand co-creators. Two hundred brewers. The result? Electric India. This beer is the bastard love child of the craft beer revolution. An unholy union between a Belgian Saison and an India Pale Ale; democratically brewed by our very own Equity for Punks shareholders. Electric India is a hoppy saison brewed with fresh orange peel, lashings of heather honey, crushed black pepper corns and enthusiastically hopped with mountains of amarillo and nelson sauvin. A beer for the people, by the people direct from the craft beer republic of BrewDog.”
It’s the usual 330ml bottle and comes in at 6.5%. It poured a bright golden-orange with good carbonation and a one-finger off-white head. Looks good, …

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Church Farm Harry's Heifer

It’s back to basics today with a good old-fashioned English Bitter. Or is it? It’s called Heifer which would imply that’s it’s a Hefeweizen style of beer…But it’s actually described as a “Quaffable session ale with a hoppy aroma. Brewed with a blend of Marris Otter, Vienna and Crystal malts, with Centennial and Cascade hops”. So a hoppy take on Best Bitter, perhaps? It’s a 500ml bottle and poured pale amber with good carbonation but the merest of heads. I wouldn’t describe the aroma as hoppy. Malty, yes, with a little cereal grain and a slight floral undertone. The taste was smooth enough: definitely floral with a slight citrus edge but mainly dominated by a malt sweetness that builds on the palate and lasts into the aftertaste.
Tyson says: Pleasant enough, if too a little on the sweet side for my palate. The puzzlement is where did all those hops go?