On the plus side I have enjoyed everything I have tried from Siren Craft and have great respect for them. On the debit side I am deeply cynical about everything Brewdog does. Both opinions were reinforced during an enjoyable evening with my new ‘meet-up’ chums. It was my first time at Brewdog Camden and I was somewhat surprised at how small it was. Brewdog relentlessly market Brewdog and only Brewdog, the pumps carry no clips, lens or fisheyes except the Brewdog logo, it is everywhere else too. If, say, Budweiser did this there would be uproar. Anyway before I go too far with this rant let’s talk about beer.
Sound Wave IPA and Broken Dream ‘breakfast’ stout I had tried before and are both excellent benchmarks for their style. Undercurrent and Liquid Mistress make up their core four.
Undercurrent, 4.5% is a pleasant entry level pale ale, a good thirst quencher.
Liquid Mistress is among the growing band of red IPA’s and red ales which I predict could become the next drinking man’s bitter. Like most of Siren’s offering this is not shy of hops and definitely falls into the red IPA category.
Seven Seas is a black wheat IPA, 6% and full marks to anyone who names the seven US and German hops beginning with C. I am a big fan of black IPA but I’m not sure a black wheat IPA adds anything to equation.
White Tips (4.7%) was my first ever wit IPA, brilliant, why has nobody done this before? All the refreshing, citrus notes of a witbier topped up with plenty of hops for the IPA lover.
I should have tried the Calypso first off. It is a Berliner Weiss style, as Kernel have recently been brewing – but at 4% this is stronger, if you haven’t tried it before, think fresh gueuze – it is a sour. It’s Marmite and I love it. Too thin and they can be just acidic but this had the Amarillo hop to give it some body (and a decent ABV). It’s a must try, if you haven’t done so before.
Heavyweights always come last on the bill, so time to move on to 10 Finger Discount, a collaboration with To Øl, cedar spirals being the novelty ingredient. At 7.3% with hops to match this tastes as what I would describe as a double IPA, hoppy but with that rich marmalade-y thing going on. My fave IPA of the evening.
Americano, is a brand new ‘coffee IPA’. At 9.2% it was good but for me the Seven Seas delivered more for less.
Caribbean Chocolate Cake (Jerk edition) is Cigar City collaboration. Tropical stout, 7.4% contains experimental hops, cacao nibs and ‘Cyprus wood’ (Cypress?). As full as you’d expect, big choc flavour, what’s not to like?
Odyssey 001 is from the barrel aged range and boy, was it worth waiting for! For once I could actually taste all the flavours in the description, complex, boozy, warming sipper. Delightful. For the purists here is the website description “An imperial stout brewed with liquorice root and dark muscovado sugars rest in 3 different barrel types ready for blending together to create a unique flavour profile. The coming together of Banyuls, Brandy & Bourbon with a dash of Liquid Mistrress will make this complex beer a keeper.”
Date: Tuesday, 13 May 2014
Beer selection: 7.5/10
Beer quality: 8/10
A good night out: 6/10
Total score: 34.5/50, 69%