It is officially the silly season….woop dee feckin doo! Just to be clear the sarcasm is dripping through the screen here. In order get through / embrace the season of good will I decided to throw myself enthusiastically into ordering plentiful beers via some of the awesome online purveyors of fine ales. This has meant by stark old pantry cupboards are now in plentiful supply of excellence to enjoy and numb the nonsense that inevitably ensues.
So I was most pleased to make an order of the Beer Jerk advent calendar. 24 beers for 24 days , and not just regular old standards you night get in a regular order, but 24 more rare releases from a wide variety of breweries, from NZ and worldwide. I was not disappointed upon opening as there were only 2 within that I recognised as having imbibed previously These were the outrageous 14.9% Urbanaut Imperial Triple Hazy, which is basically a meal in a can and the Modern Times Orderville Hazy which I remember being an absolute delight!
And yes, I have totally gone against all Christmas tradition and opened them all at once. Where is my Christmas spirit? Sitting firmly beside the Grinch in the Grinches cave I’m afraid, but I am drinking them in the exact order as they were boxed, so that is something right? Too bad if it isnt, but perhaps some sense of childhood wonderment will appear via some other nostalgic Xmas nonsense.
As I tend to not drink through the working week in an attempt to kid myself I am being more healthy, I shall not be opening a beer every day of December, but will instead do what every responsible drinker does and cram them all in over the weekends. Now, on to the beers:
Dec 1 – Urbanaut Imperial Triple Hazy (Auckland, NZ)
Just an outrageous start to proceedings. A huge huge beer in a very tiny can, but believe me you could not drink a pint of this. Not that it is bad in any way, but you would simply collapse in a massive heap of your own uncontrollable limbs by half way. Yes its chewy, but its delicious and would drink again in a heartbeat.
Dec 2 – Amundsen Brewery Parallel Worlds Respberry and Tonka Sour (Norway)
Loved this. Tasted like Pastry as described, the Raspberry was wonderful and it was balanced well by the Tonka (which I discovered is similar in nature to Vanilla). Two for two so far!
Dec 3 – Dugges Bryggeri Porter (Sweden)
Exceptionally roasty toasty flavour, almost overpowering, but not quite. I did enjoy it though and was a nice end to an enjoyable evening of sampling. However, I was rather “upset” in the stomach department the next day which was weird. I have put the blame on this beers shoulders ..perhaps unfairly
Dec 4 – Modus Operandi Former Tenant Red IPA
Even comes with a hilarious back story regarding a former tenant of the brewery growing weed and getting caught or some such. However for me this is where the “fun”ended. The first sip didn’t fill me with confidence, then I thought it grew on me but I found it hard to get to the end of the can. My drinking buddy concurred and didn’t drink more than a few sips. Sorry Modus.
Dec 5 – Eddyline Black Lager (Nelson, NZ or Colorado, USA)
According to the Beer Jerk Facebook page, I have made an early error. Apparently it should have been the Alesmith Brewing Hazy, ah well then. It is what it is !
I have also discovered via the power of the interwebs that Eddyline are also based in Colorado! You learn something new every day after all.
Well, I have to admit I have not been singing from the rooftops about their beers so far, but this one is indeed slightly better than the rest! It is pretty big and roasty which you dont fully expect, but it thankfully mellows out a bit.
Dec 6 – Ground Up Brewing Monk Life Saison (Wanaka, NZ)
Not a huge fan of the Saison style but this was pleasant, very drinkable and it is always pleasing to discover a new brewery. Shall look to investigate this one some more based on this rather lovely drop.
More on the advent calendar next time but meanwhile and within all of this excitement I drank some other delightful and not so delicious ales.
Can Behemoth do no wrong?? As you may have noted from my past ravings , I love Behemoth and everything they do.
This week I went for the “Lenny and Carl”, another of their Hazy Hop Buddy range, this one brewed with Cira and Sabro hops, which I am not familiar with. Simply delicious once again , far superior I am sure to Duff.
My second choice for my Sunday sampling was the “Thanks Pecan Pie”, a 9.7% Imperial Stout. Now, this one pained me, I could not make up my mind. It was so sweet, sickly so. But at the same time I could not stop drinking it. I dont have much of a sweet tooth and really dont eat that much in the way of desserts or sweet items. But when I do, like this, it must trigger something deep inside my brain because I could not get enough. It did not make me want to go and try a Pecan Pie either.
It was not as good as the “Mmmmm Doughnuts”. A beer that tasted exactly like doughnuts! I mean, come on! What is the world coming too here. It was fantastic.
In amongst by rabid online ordering, I visited Garage Project on a friends recommendation to purchase their Triple Hazy IPA, Excessive Machine. It was built up somewhat and I have to say deservedly so. Would be up there for one of the beers of the year I think.
Not so Good
As part of making my order “worthwhile” (I like to justify the delivery costs so always order too much) I also got in two of their special releases, and you would have to agree they are quite festive released no?
Well , if so then I hate Christmas more. Sorry, but both the “Golden Raspberry and Lemon White Chocolate Stout” and the Dark Chocolate Espresso, Hazelnut & Orange Stout” were less than enjoyable. Both are marketed as being “Liquid White / Dark Chocolate in a Can”. A nice idea but really not enjoyable as a beer. Unfortunately I couldn’t even finish the dark one and I dont not finish beer that often.
So, a reasonable summary I am sure you will agree. As I right I have progressed a couple of more days into the advent calendar, and on a wee weekend in the mecca of Palmerston North, have sneakily discovered a new brewery who have produced a phenomenal Hazy. Join me, go on..it isn’t too bad is it?