Monday, 11 February 2013

Four Strong Ales from Beermoth, Manchester

I'm tasting four beers from Beermoth, Manchester's newest specialist beer shop which I reviewed last week. See here. They're actually classed as slightly different styles but you could say they're all pretty much strong pale(ish) hoppy brews.
The first Orval is a stone cold classic Trappist ale. The brewery makes only one beer and it's a very reasonable £2.90. It's an idiosyncratic beer. I think it's one that you can immediately tell is Orval, as it's so very dry and peppery. It's complex, refreshing, slightly citrussy and very hoppy, but not in the way American ales are. A true Belgian legend.

Next, a recent favourite is Vuur & Vlam (£3.50) from Dutch brewers De Molen. I absolutely love this beer. It's a gorgeous, hazy, cloudy, fruity and hoppy IPA. It has the tropical fruit element that American pale ales have, but it's not too overpowering, the bitterness and fruitiness are in perfect harmony. Just a lovely brew.

I thought I'd try some new beers as well. Despite Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale (£3.45) looking darker and calling itself a Winter Beer, it tastes like an IPA. It's really bitter, hoppy and dry. It's actually a little too bitter for my palette, it's a good beer but I prefer Vuur & Vlam as it has the flavours balanced perfectly. Some people really go for the West Coast style 'hop monster' but for me it's just too much. I still enjoyed it though.

St Lupulin Extra Pale Ale (£3.95) is another new one on me. It reminds me of Vuur & Vlam a little. Nicely balanced, not too bitter, floral and a little hoppy, it's very clean tasting. I enjoyed it a lot.

All four beers were good, but my top choice of them all would be Vuur & Vlam.

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