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Plaza Vieja Obscura

Rating: 3.45

Another interesting Cuban offering now, this one will be my second beer from the Taberna de la Muralla brewery in Havana as well as being my penultimate review of beers I tried whilst in Cuba towards the end of last year. This one follows on from the Clara offering from the brewery that I tried here previously and is beer that very little information seems to be available on; the abv. is unknown and it’s a beer that I’ll list as a Vienna style lager but I’ve also seen it listed as a dunkel and even an English pale ale. I tried this one towards the end of my trip in Cuba and although I found the beer easily enough, it proved a little more difficult to order depending on which waiter served you; the beer was occasionally known as the ‘dark’ beer of the trio with the ‘Negra’ the black beer but often when ordering the dark beer you were also given the negra. After a couple of attempts I managed to finally try this one and it wasn’t bad at all, although my opinion of it was likely influenced by the fact that it was my first non-pale lager in about two weeks so it was gonna to be good regardless. Here’s what I thought of it anyway.


Appearance (4/5): Caramel amber and quite cloudy as you’d expect given the name, the beer is headed by a foamy looking head that is white in colour and leaves a nice touch of lacing around the sides whilst covering the surface of the beer well too.
Aroma (6/10): Semi-sweet on the nose, this one opens with some caramel malts and a few hints of toffee that are backed up by some sugars and quite a malty base. There was a slightly astringent smell around the middle but a few fresh bursts of sweetness soon follow at it was relatively well balanced as well.
Taste (6/10): Opening with some light toffee and a sweet caramel taste that followed on from the nose well, this one was quite a malty beer that had plenty of sugars and the odd touch of citrus in the background which was somewhat surprising. This was followed by touches of vanilla and butterscotch towards the end but otherwise it wasn’t an overly memorable offering.
Palate (4/5): Medium bodied and fairly sweet with lively carbonation and quite a balanced feel. There was some freshness to the beer with a slight citrus tang too but it wasn’t overly complex despite it going down easily enough.

Overall (13/20): Quite an interesting one this and a nice beer in general, mainly because it was the first non-pale lager that I managed to try after almost two weeks in Cuba; it probably went down a lot better than it might otherwise have done as a result of this. It was quite a lively and fairly sweet offerings that featured a nice combination of toffee and caramel alongside the usual sugars and vanilla flavours, it also went down easily enough but I had been looking for something a touch more complex or memorable if I’m honest; still, this is definitely one to seek out if you find yourself in Havana.

Brewed In: Havana, Cuba
Brewery: Taberna de la Muralla
Full Name: Taberna de la Muralla Obscura
Also Known As: Factoria Plaza Vieja Obscura
Type: Vienna Lager
Abv: circa 4.2%
Serving: Draught (500ml)
Purchased: Factoria Plaza Vieja, Havana, Cuba
Price: 2 CUC (approx. £1.56)

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  1. January 13, 2017 at 08:27

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