Chili Hammer

Rating: 2.65

The third beer in Brewdog’s 2016 ‘Hammer Head’ series now, this one is the penultimate beer in the series and puts a chilli beer twist on the original Jack Hammer. The beer is labelled as a chilli-mango IPA and is the second chilli beer from the brewery that I’ll have reviewed of late, this one following on from the schooner of Neon Overlord that I sampled on-tap at one of Brewdog’s Glasgow locations soon after its release. This offering was coincidentally released alongside Neon Overlord and both being chilli beers, it seems like someone at the brewery ordered too much of the stuff and this was a quick way of getting rid of it. As I’ve mentioned already, this is the third in the series I’ve reviewed and it follows on from their Monk Hammer and Black Hammer offering which both seemed to go down quite well when I initially reviewed them. Sadly this is the beer in the series that I was looking forward to the least but I’m hopeful it is not too bad and perhaps might even be a slight improvement on the fairly average Neon Overlord; I guess we’re about to find out either way.


Appearance (3/5): Light bodied and golden tinged, this one has a fairly clear body and is topped with what can only be described as a disappointing looking head that sits as a fine lacing around the circumference of the beer with nothing in the centre really.
Aroma (6/10): Spicy on the nose initially but not quite in your face, this one opens with some background hops and a faint citrus that also has some tropical notes showing. There’s a light bitterness in the early going with some sweetness coming from the grapefruit and mango before some chillies start to feature around the middle. It’s a refreshing nose in the early going with a few touches of orange and a little pepper coming through too.
Taste (5/10): Definitely a spicy beer in the early going, the chillies from the nose feature with the taste a lot earlier and they seem a lot stronger too; although unlike the Neon Overlord offering from Brewdog, this one still remains drinkable to an extent and doesn’t overpower completely. There is some pepper in there too and a little citrus that ushers in touches of sweetness from the tropical fruits but none seem as strong as they were on the nose. There is a little mango, some apricot and oranges with touches of pine and grapefruit around the middle too. It’s still a fresh tasting beer but the chillies seem to take  away from the rest of the taste in my opinion and exactly what I’d call a great tasting beer sadly.
Palate (2/5): Naturally spicy and quite sharp, this one sits with a medium body and a slight tang thanks to the citrus that comes through quite early on. There’s a basic sweetness to proceedings from the tropical fruits that manage to sneak in between the chillies and pepper spice and carbonation is about medium too. It wasn’t overpoweringly spicy but it did still seem quite difficult to drink and I tried of it by the end sadly.

Overall (11/20): This one an interesting one in some respects, after all it’s not everyday you get to try a new spiced/chilli beer but it wasn’t exactly a great tasting offering sadly. Compared to the last chilli beer I had, Neon Overlord from the same brewery, this one was quite drinkable and didn’t overpower but it’s not the type of beer I’m likely to pick up ordinarily. There was some nice sweetness coming through early on and a few citrus bursts featured too but as you’d expect from this type of beer, the pepper and chillies dominated and beyond that everything else seemed like a bonus.

Brewed In: Ellon, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Brewery: Brewdog
First Brewed: 2016
Type: Spiced Beer (Chilli Beer)/American IPA
Abv: 7.2%
Serving: Can (330ml)
Purchased: Brewdog BottleDog (Glasgow)
Price: £2.57

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  1. January 25, 2017 at 10:59

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