Posts Tagged ‘1001’

Shiga Kogen IPA (359 of 1001)

October 16, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.65

The second review of a beer that I managed to try in Japan recently, this one is the first of the beers on the 1001 list from the country that I managed to find as well. I stumbled across this one at the Two Dogs Taproom in the Roppongi area of Tokyo on my second night in the city and it was the first I ordered on my visit. Brewed by Tamamura Honten (itself a well established sake brewery) in the Nagano area of the country, this was I believe the only beer from the brewery that I tried during my time in Japan but I did see a few of their other beers in a bottle shop towards the end of my trip but never picked any new ones up; instead I opted for bringing a bottle of this one home with me to the UK.

Appearance (4/5): Medium amber in colour with a still body and a quarter centimetre head that was about double that initially but had settled by the time it reached my table. The surface was well covered on the beer though, only a slight break up showed at one side and it was a decent start.
Aroma (7/10): Hoppy to start with, the beer opened with some grapefruit and a light citrus aroma that was coupled with some faint earthy notes towards the middle. There wasn’t anything overpowering on the nose but a slight malt bitterness further on was a nice touch.
Taste (6/10): The taste of this one matches the nose quite closely with some grapefruit and pine in the early going but it wasn’t quite as malty as the nose was. There was some citrus notes and a few earthy flavours as things progressed before some biscuit and bread malts started to show; a few subtle spices and fruits rounding things off nicely.
Palate (4/5): Medium bodied and fairly bitter with some resinous pine bitterness in the early going before turning to a more malty, earthy bitterness further on. The balance of the beer was a good one which made it quite easy to drink and it was well carbonated too.

Overall (15/20): This one was a decent first beer from the brewery for me and one that got off to a good start with a solid pine and grapefruit bitterness. Things remained balanced thanks to the earthy malts and touches of sweetness that appeared further on which made it an easy beer to drink; I looking forward to trying this one again with the bottle I brought home with me.

Brewed In: Yamanouchi, Nagano, Japan
Brewery: Tamamura Honten
First Brewed: 2004
Type: American IPA
Abv: 6.0%
Serving: Keg (473ml)
Purchased: Two Dogs Taproom (Roppongi, Tokyo)
Price: ¥950 (£6.29 approx.)


Brackie (358 of 1001)

September 12, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.5

A beer that I was originally hoping to try earlier this year when I visited Warsaw but despite visits to numerous bars and shops it was one of the few Polish beers from the 1001 beers list that I wasn’t able to find; that was until my recent visit to Krakow when I stumbled across it on-tap in the first pub I visited and right across from my hotel as well. Brewed near the Czech border and taking influence from their beers, this one is a lager that is apparently only available in Poland and it is the 358th beer from the 1001 beers list that I will now have reviewed here. Originally brewed not long after the brewery was founded, this beer dates to the 1850’s and is the first of only three reviews from my Krakow trip that I’ll upload here; here’s what I thought of it when I finally managed to try it last month.

Appearance (4/5): Bright orange in colour with a fairly clear body that was topped with a white head that looked slightly creamy at times. There was good lacing on the sides of the glass and the head retention was decent as well, a nice start to this one.
Aroma (6/10): Quite light on the nose with some subtle hops coming through alongside a slightly earthy middle that had some biscuit and hay showing. There nothing too strong or pronounced coming through sadly but I managed to detect some grassy hops and faint citrus before a light bitterness rounded things off.
Taste (6/10): Saaz hops and some hay like flavours opened things here, there was a good biscuit taste and some grassy hops further on before touches of earthy malts started to come through as well. I managed to get some caramel malts which added a little sweetness nearer the end with hints of butterscotch in there too.
Palate (4/5): Smooth and sitting medium to full bodied, this one was definitely thicker than expected and slightly creamy at times too but the carbonation levels were quite soft sadly. It was well balanced but perhaps a little weak, the sweetness however was a nice touch without being anything special.

Overall (14/20): This one was a decent offering that came through quite balanced and was definitely easy to drink, it was however a little weak on the nose and I was expecting a little more from a beer that featured in the 1001 beers list. It was more sweet than I’d expected and had some creamy touches which I liked but carbonation levels were below average for the style and I was looking for it to be more crisp as well. Definitely one worth sampling if you find it in Poland but it’s probably not one that I’d rush back to I’m afraid.

Brewed In: Cieszyn, Silesian Voivodeship, Poland
Brewery: Browar Zamkowy Cieszyn
First Brewed: circa. 1850’s
Type: Pale Lager
Abv: 5.5%
Serving: Keg (500ml)
Purchased: Beer House Pub (Krakow, Poland)
Price: 6 PLN (approx. £1.29)

Andechser Weissbier Hell (357 of 1001)

August 22, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.75

Number 357 from the 1001 list now and another German offering from as well, this one being a hefeweizen that I was pleasantly surprised to find available in the Bavaria Brauhaus in Glasgow on my recent visit and quickly grabbed a bottle along with some other beers from the list that they had too. One of two beers from the brewery to feature on the 1001 list, the other being their highly rated Doppelbock Dunkel which I look forward to trying at some point, this one is a beer that I has very happy to see available in the Glasgow area and being a Bavarian brewed wheat beer meant it was one that I had quite high hopes for going in. After I rough count, I believe this one will also me my fortieth German beer from the list but sadly I still have quite a few to get through before I’m done, this at least gets me one step closer.

Appearance (4/5): Bright yellow looking when it poured, the beer was quite a cloudy offering that had a thin head for the style but one that had excellent retention over the opening minutes. The head was a thin looking one that sat white and foamy on top of the beer with some good lacing left on the sides of the glass as I worked my way down; a decent start despite the lack of height from the head.
Aroma (7/10): Opening with some good banana and wheat notes, this one was very much a wheat beer nose with some cloves and coriander coming through towards the middle. It was definitely a fresh beer with some sweet touches and a little citrus to help with the balance before some faint spice rounded things off nicely. There wasn’t much out of the ordinary here but it was a pleasant and balanced nose to kick things off with.
Taste (7/10): Starting much like the nose, banana flavours kicked things off with the taste alongside some citrus and cloves but neither seemed as strong as they were with the nose. There was some spice and a faint hint of bitterness that wasn’t expected around the middle before some coriander and cloves starting to appear. The banana flavours dominated throughout through and despite still being a good tasting beer, I couldn’t help but feel a touch disappointed after the nose.
Palate (4/5): Medium bodied and definitely quite fresh, this one was a smooth offering that was as strongly carbonated as you would expect from this style of beer. Around the middle there was some spice showing and the beer has quite a crisp tang to proceedings with it seeming lively throughout. It probably not the best hefeweizen out there but it was still quite an enjoyable beer that was easy-going down.

Overall (15/20): Quite a nice wheat beer throughout, the nose in particular being a highlight for me but the taste wasn’t too bad either. There was a nice sweetness from the start and the banana flavours definitely dominated but some citrus and faint spice helped with the balance, as did the touches of bitterness lightly dotted about the place. It was an easy beer to drink and one I’d happily have again despite there being better of the style out there.

Brewed In: Andechs, Upper Bavaria
Brewery: Klosterbrauerei Andechs
First Brewed: 1764
Type: German Hefeweizen
Abv: 5.5%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Bavaria Brauhaus, Glasgow, Scotland
Price: £4.90

Stiegl Goldbräu (356 of 1001)

August 22, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 2.4

A rare Austrian beer that I managed to try without travelling half way round Europe, this one is my ninth beer from the country and only my second from what is probably their biggest brewery, Stieglbrauerei. This one is a beer that I spotted was available in the Bavarian Brahaus in Glasgow as one of the pubs few non-German bottles and seeing that it also features in the 1001 beers list I quickly decided to make it my first beer of the evening on a recent visit. Having previously tried and enjoyed the brewery’s Weisse Naturtrüb when I sampled it in Slovenia a number of years ago, I was quietly looking forward to trying this one and checking another beer off of my list. Introduced in 1912, this one is the brewery’s flagship offering and is surprisingly not a beer that I’ve ever spotted out and about before, it’s a rarity to see any Austrian beers outside of mainland Europe though I guess. The beer itself is a premium lager in the helles style and also goes by the Stiegl Beer name , there was no mention of the Goldbräu part of the name on the bottle I sampled but it was definitely the same beer.

Appearance (2/5): Bright amber coloured with a clear body and not much in the way of a head sadly, there was some fine lacing around the edges but little else beyond that sadly.
Aroma (5/10): Quite a light beer on the nose with some mild hops and faint biscuit aromas to kick things off along with a few earthy malts. There was quite a lot of lager malts and hops coming through and making up most of the nose, I got some faint citrus a little further on though before some basic bitterness and spices rounded off a fairly ordinary smelling beer.
Taste (6/10): Opening in a similar fashion to the nose, this one kicks off with some pale malts and a few earthy flavours that came through semi-bitter and quite basic. There was a combination of cereal and faint spice towards the middle with subtle hops and grassy flavours following on behind. Thankfully there was no sign of any skunk showing and the beer was finished with a semi-sweet taste that was quite light.
Palate (2/5): Quite a light bodied offering, this one was very basic and perhaps edging towards medium bodied at times. There was some faint spice and a basic bitterness throughout the beer, I got a faint citrus tang around the middle too and thankfully no skunk showing but it wasn’t very impressive in truth.

Overall (10/20): Quite a disappointing and poor beer overall, this one was very basic from the start and beyond some light malts and subtle lager hops there wasn’t really much going on here. Some spices showed at times and a few hints of cereal and hay showed around the middle but it’s certainly not one I’d go for again.

Brewed In: Salzburg, Austria
Brewery: Stieglbrauerei zu Salzburg
First Brewed: 1912
Also Known As: Stiegl Beer
Type: Munich Helles Lager/Premium Lager
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Bavaria Brauhaus, Glasgow, Scotland
Price: £3.80

Uerige Alt (355 of 1001)

August 22, 2017 1 comment

Rating: 3.2

Beer number 355 from the 1001 beers list for me now and this one is a German altbier that recently became available in my local bottle shop. The beer is one of two from the Uerige brewery based in Dusseldorf that I picked up recently, mistakenly thinking at the time that both featured on the 1001 beers list. Sadly this offering is the only one of the two that features but at least I’m one closer with it. At the time of drinking, this one is quite a popular beer online and currently sits at the 25th best Altbier on the RateBeer website as well as being the 8th best of the style on BeerAdvocate so I went in expecting big things from the beer.

Appearance (4/5): Pouring quite a rich amber to caramel colour, this one is a surprisingly clear beer that has a few fine bubbles rising to the surface and is topped with quite a nice looking, three centimetre tall head as well. The head is a foamy one that sits a light tan to creamy colour in the glass with a few bubbles showing on the surface as well but head retention is excellent from the beer and there is little movement or reduction in size over the opening couple of minutes which I hadn’t been expecting.
Aroma (6/10): Semi-sweet on the nose but come through with a very strong and malty aroma that was backed up by some nice sweetness and caramel. The beer was more bitter than anticipated in the early going with what I’d describe as quite a nutty, earthy aroma featuring touches of spice in there too. Around the middle a few floral touches start to make an appearance and there was a couple toasted malts in there for good measure but there wasn’t a huge amount of variety on the nose really and it started to fade a little after it was given time to open up slightly.
Taste (6/10): Opening quite malty and following on from the nose well but not quite as strong, there was some toasted malts and earthy flavours in the early going here, the caramel from the nose was a little lighter though and as a result it wasn’t quite as street either. There was some subtle spice and fruits around the middle but beyond that the beer just seemed a touch weak and flat at times, I got so basic fruits and a subtle sweetness towards the end as well but that was about it really.
Palate (3/5): Light-medium bodied and quite soft carbonation wise, the beer was a little flat at times although it remained quite smooth and drinkable throughout without it ever really grabbing my attention. The beer opened well with a lot of sweetness on the nose that soon gave way to a more bitter and earthy feel by the taste, there was some strong bitterness at the end of this one with hints of spice too.

Overall (12/20): An unusual beer that opened well with some nice sweetness and caramel in the early going, particularly with the nose but this never really carried to the taste and the beer was a bit of a disappointment by then; I was definitely expecting a lot more from this one given how highly rated it is as an altbier but I guess some of that is down to the fact that I’m not exactly a huge fan of the style. It will be interesting to see how the brewery’s DoppelStick compares to this offering but hopefully it will be at least a minor improvement on this one since it’s not exactly a beer that I’ll be rushing back to pick up again anytime soon sadly.

Brewed In: Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Brewery: Uerige Obergärige Hausbrauerei
First Brewed: 1862
Type: Altbier
Abv: 4.7%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Good Spirits Co. Wine & Beer (Glasgow)
Price: £4.00

Drake’s IPA (354 of 1001)

July 11, 2017 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.8

The first beer from Drake’s Brewing that I’ll have tried here and another American beer from the 1001 beers list that I can check off as well, bring my total to 354 beers tried from the list. This one isn’t the first Drake’s beer that I’ve seen available in the UK but usually their beers are only available in bombers and priced quite high so when I spotted this one for a more reasonable price recently I decided to finally grab a bottle from them. The beer itself was originally brewed in 2002 as a reworking of an earlier beer brewed by the Lind Brewing Company, the name Drake’s went by before the original owner was bought out. An instant hit, the beer was probably considered quite bitter and hoppy when first brewed and it managed to win a gold medal at the 2002 Great American Beer Festival as well as countless other awards in the years since. I picked this bottle up from my local bottle shop in Glasgow and I’m interested to see how the beer holds up today when compared to modern American IPA’s and it’s one I’m looking forward to cracking open.

Appearance (4/5): Golden amber with a slightly orange hue to it, the beer is quite still looking and topped with a very nice, half centimetre head that is foamy and holds well in the early going.
Aroma (7/10): Definitely more malty and sweet than is the norm for an American IPA, there is a good amount of caramel and some sweet malts in the early part but some juicy notes and a few floral hops feature as well. It’s a strong nose that hits you as soon as the bottle is opened and I enjoyed the burst of pine towards the middle. It’s not as got as many hops showing as expected but I enjoyed this one and it was a nice change of pace with some pineapple and citrus at the end too.
Taste (7/10): Quite a sweet tasting beer as you’d expect given how strong the caramel and the sweet malts were with the nose, it is toned down a little by the taste though but some caramel is definitely still present along with some good floral touches and a bit of citrus too. There was a touch of oily pine around the middle with some grapefruit in there too, the pineapple from the nose then shows itself a little earlier this time along with some juicy fruits; towards the end some grassy hops and a further burst of sweetness see things out.
Palate (4/5): Definitely a sweet beer with more of that showing than there was hops for the most part, there was some subtle bitter touches coming through though and the beer had quite a nice balance throughout thanks to the variety of flavours on offer. Today I’d place this one closer to an American pale ale than an IPA but it was still as nice beer on the palate with light-medium carbonation but quite a dry feel throughout, save for some oily pine touches around the middle.It was an easy beer to drink despite the 7% abv. since the sweetness managed to mask most of the alcohol content but there was still a subtle kick to it, especially nearer the end of the beer.

Overall (16/20): Very nice stuff from Drake’s here and an unexpected taste from the beer given I was expected a tonne of hops before cracking the bottle open. The beer was definitely closer to an American pale ale of today than it was an IPA but it was first brewed 15 years ago and a lot has changed since then, still the beer was excellent with a lot of caramel flavours and a strong, malty taste in the early going. The nose in particular was a sweet one with only a few pine hops and floral notes backing them up, the balance was still maintained though and the beer went down very easily indeed; good stuff and one I wouldn’t mind cracking open again at some point.

Brewed In: San Leandro, California, United States of America
Brewery: Drake’s Brewing Company
First Brewed: 2002
Type: American IPA
Abv: 7.0%
Serving: Bottle (355ml)
Purchased: Good Spirits Co. Wine & Beer (Glasgow)
Price: £3.80

Montseny Lupulus (353 of 1001)

June 30, 2017 1 comment

Rating: 3.35

My second beer from the Montseny brewery now and another that I tried on a visit to Barcelona, this one coming a year after I tried their Malta beer in the city back in 2016 and I actually have review of another of their beers to follow this one; thankfully both of which were better than the first from the brewery I tried last year. This one is what I think will be my first ‘Iber’ beer, basically a beer that uses top fermenting yeast alongside lager malts so that’s another type check off at least. The beer is one that I had been looking for on last years trip to Barcelona but I was unable to pick up a bottle, I did however find it a couple of weeks ago in one of the shops I tried at the same time last year so I guess I was just unlucky in finding it last year. This one will be my ninth Spanish beer from the 1001 list as well and leaves me with only two more from the country to try, one of them being another Montseny beer but sadly I was unable to find it on my last trip so I’ll have to wait a little longer I guess.

Appearance (3/5): Pale golden coloured and a touch cloudy looking, this one was topped with a thin white head that sat about half a centimetre tall and left a touch of lacing on the sides of the glass too.
Aroma (7/10): Semi-fresh on the nose with some pine and citrus hops opening up proceedings, there was some orange notes and a couple of lighter, summer fruits as well but nothing overly strong. Around the middle some floral notes and a bit of zesty citrus fruit came through before the malt bitterness seen things out; not overly complex but pleasant.
Taste (6/10): Opening like the nose, this one was zesty and quite fresh with touches of lemon and citrus to kick things off before a few herbal notes started to appear around the middle. It’s quite a basic tasting beer in truth but there was slightly more malts than with the nose, I also got a few grassy hops and pine too but it wasn’t really anything special sadly.
Palate (4/5): Fresh and crisp, the beer was lively and had a bit of a bite to it as well. It was a well carbonated offering that was well-balanced too with a subtle tang nearer the end and a basic malt bitterness to round things off.

Overall (13/20): Quite a nice beer and one that was drinkable throughout without going through as overly complex and unusual, this being despite the fact that it was probably my first ‘Iber’ beer. It opened well with some nice zesty flavours and a little pine, the malt bitterness wasn’t too far behind and stayed with you until the end. It was relatively easy to drink and the balance was a good one which made it quite sessionable and miles better than the only other beer from the brewery that I’ve reviewed here so far, their Malta offering.

Brewed In: Sant Miquel De Balenyà, Catalonia, Spain
Brewery: Companyia Cervesera del Montseny
First Brewed: 2007
Type: American Pale Ale
Abv: 5.4%
Serving: Bottle (330ml)
Purchased: Carrefour (Barcelona, Spain)
Price: €2.15 (£1.89 approx.)