Monday 31 August 2015

Siren serendipity

I had a stroke of luck when I called in at Cobbet's Real Ales for a swifty to celebrate a friends birthday. Being Friday night the place as rammed, with the micropub overflowing into most of the shop. Fortunately there was space to perch ourselves on some cushions handily placed in the shop window.

I couldn't see many of the bottles from there but my eyes were drawn to one I spied with 'brett' in it's name. Hello, hello, hello I thought, that looks like one for me.

All Bretts Are Off
It was as I'd hoped a beer brewed with Brettanomyces yeast, and even better it was brewed in conjunction with Chad Yakobson from Crooked Stave. Back in 1911 2011 when I was being innovative* and brewing with Brettanomyces information on it was very thin on the ground. Chad's Brettanomyces Project was an excellent resource on this so I'd been interested in his beers since then.

Billed as an "English Bitter", with a traditional malt base and Challenger and Fuggles hops it doesn't taste anything like an English bitter. Instead it has a dungy farmyard smell, with a touch of Orval about it, with surprisingly citrus fruity flavour, though still a bit earthy.

It was certainly interesting and challenging, which some think are the sort of beers that the Great British Beer Festival should be full of. I can't help but think that beers that smell of manure are only going to be of limited appeal though.

*Apart from the fact it had been done years before.

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