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Posts Tagged ‘lager’

Rockshore Irish Lager

June 29, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 2.05

A new beer from Guinness for 2018, this is a beer that I first spotted in a bar in Donegal Town recently but never ended up trying on that occasion but when I spotted it in another bar in Fermanagh where it was the only beer I hadn’t tried it was then that I decided to finally give it a try. I was a little worried that it would be a relatively poor lager from the brewery and one that tries to jump on the Hop House 13 bandwagon since that one has proved quite a successful beer for Guinness. Who knows if this one will become another permanent offering from the brewery so I guess it’s good I’ve been able to try it while it is but if the taste is anything to go by then I don’t anticipate it being around for very long.

Appearance (4/5): Pale, golden straw in colour with quite a clear body that has a lot of bubbles rising to the surface. The head is a foamy and straight looking one that sits about a centimetre tall and holds well throughout with some nice lacing on the sides of the glass too; not a bad looking effort for the style really.
Aroma (4/10): Plain, even for the style, with some straw and grassy notes opening things but it was definitely quite a light offering. There was some hay and corn towards the middle with a few adjuncts coming through but not a lot else beyond that other than a couple of subtle lager malts to see things out.
Taste (2/10): Grassy hops and a few light adjuncts kick things off alongside some hay and straw before the odd earthy malt features. It was definitely a light offering with a cheap and basic feel that had some bread flavours and touches of bitterness further on; it tasted awful though.
Palate (2/5): Light to light-medium bodied, the beer is quite basic but falls short of being thin. It’s a cheap and basic offering though and one that seemed bland with a light and faint hop bitterness on top of average carbonation for the still; very poor stuff sadly.

Overall (2/20): This one was an awful beer and every bit the macro-pale lager that I feared when ordering this one, a beer that I’d likely have avoided had there been anything else new available in the bar. The beer started poorly with quite a weak nose and it got progressively worse after that, the taste in particular being a bad one with an overload of corn and basic adjuncts. There was a faint bitterness alongside some hay and grassy flavours but there really wasn’t much to this one and it was a real struggle to finish, I ended up leaving half of it and it’s not a beer I’ll have again.

Brewed In: Dublin, Ireland
Brewery: St. James’s Gate Brewery
First Brewed: 2018
Type: Pale Lager
Abv: 4.0%
Serving: Keg (Pint)
Purchased: Frank’s Bar, Lisnaskea, North of Ireland
Price: £3.25

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Boyne Vienna Lager

June 19, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 2.9

A fifth offering from the Boyne Brewhouse in County Meath now, this one is the first I’ve reviewed from them since trying their American Pale Ale back in March when I got it as part of a Beer52 order to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day although the beer itself wasn’t the best, much like the three from the brewery that I picked up in Ireland when I was over at the end of last summer. I grabbed this one alongside the brewery’s Session IPA and I’m hopeful the pair can turn things around for the brewery in my eyes, otherwise these might be the last two that I pick up from them for some time.

Appearance (4/5): Pouring a slightly brighter than anticipated light amber colour, the body is a little hazy and the head is a half centimetre, foamy white one that starts to turn patchy in the centre quite quickly but holds around the sides a little longer.
Aroma (5/10): Floral and quite a lot of citrus to begin, this one seems lighter and less sweet than normal for the style with some grassy hops and faintly herbal notes opening things up. It’s got a few earthy hops in the early going with more malts towards the middle and a touch of corn or hay at the end. It’s a basic and quite light beer that’s not at all what I expected for the style either, a poor start here in my opinion.
Taste (5/10): Again quite light with some citrus and faint grassy hops opening things, the taste was floral with some hay and corn coming through but I was again looking for more malts and sweetness. The beer proved itself a basic one with touches of biscuit and a slightly metallic taste towards the end but it wasn’t at all what I wanted from this one sadly.
Palate (3/5): Light-medium bodied and with a touch lighter carbonation than expected, it was about right for a Vienna lager but this one definitely didn’t seem like your usual Vienna lager. There was some floral touches and a light citrus tang on what was a semi-dry beer towards the end but one that didn’t have a lot going for it really.

Overall (10/20): Really disappointing stuff again from Boyne Brewhouse, I’m not sure why I keep picking up beers from this brewery because as yet I’ve not had a good one from them in five attempts, maybe the next one I still have to try will be better. I picked this one up expecting quite a sweet and smooth beer with some caramel malts but instead I ended up with a basic lager-pale ale hybrid that had some citrus and grassy hops with not a lot else. The beer seemed basic and uninspired with the odd floral touch coming through but it was a poor effort and definitely one to avoid.

Brewed In: Drogheda, Count Meath, Ireland
Brewery: Boyne Brewhouse
First Brewed: 2017
Type: Vienna Lager
Abv: 5.0%
Serving: Can (150ml)
Purchased: Reilly’s (Lisnaskea)
Price: £1.67

Cloudwater Helles Mandarina

June 13, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.8

A fourteenth beer from Cloudwater for me now, this one is hot on the heels of several offerings from the brewery, including their Chubbles double IPA that I reviewed here last and is a beer that I picked up online from the brewery’s store thanks to their free delivery promotion for May, otherwise it is a beer that I probably wouldn’t have ended up trying. It is one that I’ve spotted in a number of bottle shops of late though and from what I can tell online, it’s a beer that was initially in the first couple of months of the year so it will be interesting to see if it turns out to be a regular release from the brewery given the majority (if not all) of their beers are brewed once and then never seen again.

Appearance (4/5): Very clear amber in colour, this one had a tiny hint of golden straw showing and is topped with a foamy white head that starts about two and a half centimetres tall but looks quite thick, managing to hold quite well in the early going and leaving some touches of lacing on the sides too.
Aroma (7/10): This one opened with quite a standard helles nose initially, there was the usual lager malts and some grassy touches but there was some faint citrus and orange sitting in the background which was a nice addition. The beer had some floral hops towards the middle and these added a light bitterness but it stayed balanced and had some biscuit malts further on as well. A solid offering that was quite a pleasant helles but one that came with a hint of citrus for a nice twist.
Taste (7/10): Lager malts and some subtle orange touches kick things off here, there was definitely a little more showing that there was with the nose and there beer seemed a touch fresher as a result. It was still quite a light tasting beer with some biscuit malts and earthy touches a little further on before some grassy hops seen things out.
Palate (4/5): Fresh and quite light on the palate but coming through with some nice orange and citrus touches that gave the beer a subtle tang. It was an easy to drink offering with a subtle bitterness thanks to the floral hops but the balance was great throughout and it was quite refreshing too.

Overall (16/20): Excellent stuff as always from Cloudwater, this one was a beer that had initially confused me into thinking it was going to be a helles with a mandarin kick given the name but there was at least some touches of orange and citrus coming through on top of what was a very fresh and balanced lager. The beer was a pleasure to drink and went down very well with some nice floral hops and biscuit flavours further on as well as the usual lager malts and grassy hops; this one is up there with some the better German brewed helles that I’ve tried and is one that I’d happily have again.

Brewed In: Manchester, England
Brewery: Cloudwater Brew Co.
First Brewed: 2018
Type: Munich Helles Lager
Abv: 4.8%
Serving: Can (440ml)
Purchased: Cloudwaterbrew.co
Price: £4.00

Brewdog Small Batch Dry-Hopped Pilsner v2

June 13, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 3.6

The second of two beers that I tried when finally visiting Brewdog’s new Edinburgh bar at the end of last month, this one following on from their Eight-Bit collaborative offering that I reviewed here last. This particular beer is an slightly tweaked offering (hence the ‘v2’ in the name) and I would usually avoid this type of beer from them given there track record with new pale lagers but I decided to give this one a go as it was about the only beer the bar was selling in a pint serving that I hadn’t already tried. I’m not sure if this is a beer that we’ll see again from Brewdog but it was nice enough to become a regular pilsner from them, although it would need a few chances and tweaks before I decided to rush out and try it a second time.

Appearance (4/5):A light, golden amber colour with straw tinges and semi-clear body that was topped with a foamy white head, starting about a centimetre tall and fading to a thin surface lacing after thirty seconds or so but not looking too badly for the style of beer.
Aroma (6/10): Not the strongest nose in the early going, there was some corn and a slight sweetness opening proceedings with a subtle bitterness too but I struggled to get too much off this one really. There was no sign of the dry-hopping implied by the name and it was definitely a basic smelling lager.
Taste (7/10): Corn and hay kick things off with a nice citrus backing that had some grassy hops pushing through as well. It’s a slightly fresher than the nose with some subtle hops that started to grow on me as things moved on. Towards the end some earthy hops and light hay started to come through but the highlight seemed to be the citrus.
Palate (4/5):Light medium bodied and quite basic throughout, the beer had a subtle citrus tang at points and a light hop bitterness with a hint of sweetness at the start from the corn too. Very much a basic beer on the palate but it was quite clean and easy-going with a crisp feel towards the end as well.

Overall (14/20): After not getting off to the greatest of starts given the nose, the beer continued as quite a basic one but started to improve slightly as things moved on. There was some pleasant earthy flavours and some citrus whilst it remained well-balanced and easy to drink throughout without ever really exciting too much; perhaps with a few tweaks it might make a decent permanent offering from the brewery though but there is definitely some work to be done.

Brewed In: Ellon, Aberdeenshire, Scotland
Brewery: Brewdog
First Brewed: 2018
Type: Pilsner
Abv: 4.7%
Serving: Keg (Pint)
Purchased: Brewdog Lothian Road, Edinburgh, Scotland
Price: £4.95

Birra Moretti Alla Toscana

June 13, 2018 Leave a comment

Rating: 2.3

My fourth beer from Moretti now, this one is actually a beer that I first seen back in 2015 when I was in Venice but I never managed to try it at that point; I did get to sample the brewery’s Alla Siciliana and Alla Friulana offerings though with the former being the better of the two. I’ve spotted this one a number of times in Morrion’s supermarkets of late and knew it was only a matter of time before I picked up a bottle and gave it a try, that despite the fact that none of the brewery’s previous three offerings that I’ve tried (their flagship pale lager Birra Moretti included) have been particularly good but perhaps this one will surprise me and somehow be different.

Appearance (3/5): This one pours a very light amber colour that is quite clear and settles with some straw tinges through the body of the beer. The head is a bubbly white one that starts just under a centimetre and a half tall but fades to about a third of that after thirty seconds or so but still covers the surface of the beer well at this stage.
Aroma (4/10): A very basic lager nose kicks things off with a lot of corn and light sweetness showing alongside some grassy notes and hay. There’s a combination of vegetable adjuncts coming through with some bread malts too but there wasn’t a whole lot going on really and it was quite basic overall.
Taste (5/10): Slightly sweeter than the nose was to start, this one is quite a basic lager with some corn and vegetable adjuncts in the early going again but there was some bread malts and straw flavours too. It’s quite a light taste throughout with some hints of citrus and grain coming through but never really imposing themselves on the taste at any stage.
Palate (2/5): Light-medium bodied and quite sharp with a crisp tang and moderate carbonation. It was definitely a basic beer with some cheap adjuncts and a subtle sweetness to proceedings but there wasn’t too much that was memorable about this one I’m afraid.

Overall (8/20): Quite a disappointing beer from Moretti and that was without me expecting much going in, this one was a cheap and basic attempt at a pale lager with some vegetable adjuncts, corn and a subtle sweetness making up the majority of both the nose and the taste without anything every really grabbing your attention or making itself known throughout. It was an easy beer to drink given it was quite bland and inoffensive but it’s not one that I could recommend, nor is it a beer that I’d have again I’m afraid.

Brewed In: Bergamo, Italy
Brewery: Birra Moretti (Heineken)
First Brewed: 2015
Type: Speciality Grain/Pale Lager
Abv: 5.5%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Morrison’s (Glasgow
Price: £1.95

Cloudwater Small IPL Citra Mosaic

Rating: 3.55

A ninth new beer for me to review from the Manchester based Cloudwater Brew Co. now and one of several from the brewery that I’ve picked up of late thanks to a visit to my local bottle shop and the fact that the brewery were offering free delivery on their beers online for the month of May. This particular offering is one that I picked up in a Glasgow bottle shop just over a month ago and is a much lighter beer that comes in at under 3% abv. and labelled as an India Pale Lager, this is an interesting one that I’m eager to try. The beer is my first new Cloudwater offering since reviewing (and loving) their DIPA Citra Enigma back in April and while I’ll be very surprised if this one hits those same heights, I’m hopeful this one will prove to be a decent session beer in its own right.

Appearance (4/5): This one pours quite a cloudy and bright looking golden colour that is fairly light looking and is topped with a fluffy looking, white head that sits about two or three centimetres tall as it’s poured before settling down at just under a centimetre tall.
Aroma (7/10): The nose is a fresh one that is quite fruity initially with some citrus and orange notes opening things up and giving off more that I expected from a 2.9% abv. beer, there was some nice touches of pine and background tropical fruits in there as well before it settled down some towards the middle. I managed to get some mango and pineapple coming through alongside some grassy hops and light biscuit but it was a good start from such a low alcohol beer.
Taste (6/10): Opening with some citrus and orange from the nose but neither seems quite as strong as it did previously, there was some touches of biscuit and pale malts coming through this time around with a few grassy flavours further on. There was again some subtle tropical fruits showing and it had all the makings of a very light session IPA with some mango, pineapple and lemon in there and I also got the odd pine hop too. It was quite light but fresh beer, especially at the end but I guess that’s to be expected from this type of beer.
Palate (4/5): Definitely a light offering as expected, it was surprisingly fresh and had a nice citrus feel to it with the odd tropical fruit and some pine adding to the bitterness and placing it close to a very light session IPA. There was a good balance to the beer and it was refreshing, easy to drink and much better than I anticipated too.

Overall (13/20): Interesting stuff from Cloudwater and by far the lightest of their beers that I’ve tried given I’m more accustomed to picking up strong IPA’s and double IPA’s from the Manchester based brewery but this one was a nice change up and a beer that surprised me in just how fresh and drinkable it turned out to be. Given it’s such a low-alcohol beer, it’s probably not an offering that I’d pick up again but it was certainly nice to try, and I wouldn’t be against grabbing another from this range of beers from them in future; I’ve definitely had worse session IPA’s before so I’ve no complaints over this one really.

Brewed In: Manchester, England
Brewery: Cloudwater Brew Co.
First Brewed: 2018
Type: India Pale Lager
Abv: 2.9%
Serving: Can (440ml)
Purchased: Good Spirits Co. Wine & Beer (Glasgow)
Price: £3.30

Paulaner Original Münchner Hell

Rating: 3.75

My sixth Paulaner beer now and my first new one in a while too, this will be my first new offering from the German brewery since I had a bottle of their Weissbier Kristallklar back in 2014 but I’m still partial to their flagship Hefe-Weissbier Naturtrub anytime I see it available. This particular offering is one that I’ve seen on a few occasions on-tap in and around Glasgow but for whatever reason it’s not one that I had ever got around to trying before the weekend so I felt that was definitely somethings that I needed to correct.

Appearance (4/5): Quite a light golden colour that is very clear too, the beer had a large, foamy white head in the early going with it starting about three centimetres tall before fading to about half that. There was a lot of fine bubbles rising to the surface as the beer settled and it looked quite good for the style.
Aroma (7/10): Quite a light beer on the nose with some corn and faint citrus opening thing up and a few lager malts not too far behind. There was some hay and a little biscuit towards the middle as well as a touch of sweetness but it was a clean and fairly standard smelling lager in truth.
Taste (7/10): Slightly sweet tasting with some subtle citrus and corn as well as the biscuit from the nose then some grassy touches around the middle. Again it was quite a clean, basic lager with a few subtle malts in there as well but it was pleasant tasting and easy-going too.
Palate (4/5): Quite light and clean with a fresh feel throughout and a smooth body that went down easily. There was a subtle sweetness throughout and some faint citrus too but it was balanced and exactly what I’d expect from a good helles lager.

Overall (15/20): A very nice lager from Paulaner, this one was clean and balanced with an excellent mouthfeel despite it not being the most varied or exciting tasting beer; it was very well made though. Opening with a subtle sweetness and touches of biscuit, there was a hint of citrus in there too and everything worked well together to give a light but enjoyable tasting beer that went down very easily indeed.

Brewed In: Munich, Germany
Brewery: Paulaner Brauerei (Schörghuber)
First Brewed: Brewery from 1634
Also Known As: Paulaner Munich Lager / Original Munich Lager
Type: Munich Helles Lager
Abv: 4.9%
Serving: Keg (Pint)
Purchased: Church on the Hill, Glasgow, Scotland
Price: £4.80