Monday, 2 November 2009

A Halloween of more beer.

It’s the same story every year. I head out to collect my bottle of Wychwood Hobgoblin and any other bottled seasonals from the supermarket, we watch some scary films, then go to bed. Well most years anyway, Halloween has seemed pretty dull since I got into my twenties. This year me and the lovely Helen decided a slightly different approach was needed after a heavy stag weekend the previous week, so we got a log fire going and had a roast beef dinner.

Our dog Troy is intrigued by wood fires, they make him sleepy

Oddly enough not many Halloween seasonal beers could be found this year, this happened last Christmas and I was told it was something to do with the recession making the supermarkets want to tone down that kind of thing. But anyhow I had some decent fireside beers in but no Hobgoblin this year which was sort of sad because it would have done a better job of pairing with the roast beef than the Hambleton Ales Nightmare that was used, not that it’s a bad beer, it just lacked that heavy malt substance that was required for the pairing, next time I’m going for something on the lines of a Brooklyn Brown ale, Meantime London Porter or a heavy Belgian Dubbel.

Anyway I digress.

Daleside Monkey wrench is a pretty solid strong ale for the fireside, favored by many of the Daleside staff. The way I see it, Black Sheep have their Riggwelter, Theakstons have Old Peculiar, Daleside have this voluptuous, caramelized expression of rich malts that more than gives the latter two a run for their money. I have to admit the cask version is much superior.

Next up was this bizarre little number from Brewdog. Dogma (formally known as Speedball) took awhile for me to get my head round. The easiest way to describe it is to say its almost like an American IPA base beer with a crazy mix of honey and spices added. At 7.8% a.b.v the bottle mentions the ingredients Guarana, poppy seeds, kola nut and heather honey. The palate opens with warming alcohols and a clean smack from plenty of US hops. Then it comes at you with interludes of honey, spice and even some strange undertones of cocoa and heather over a nutty texture that seems out of place. Pretty fascinating stuff, and 10/10 for effort to Brewdog for this one. But the flavors just didn’t harmonize in any way, the effect is bizarre. Its almost like listening a record from The Smiths full volume whilst someone plays some new school Cannibal Corpse over the top of it. Now you see what I mean.

And finally we did watch a scary movie, but wasn’t nearly as freaky as this beer. Overall I would say its worth a try, but not one of my favorite Brewdog beers.


Ed said...

Your The Smiths/Cannibal Corpse comparison is an excellent way of putting it. I also thought Dogma was a wierd combination that just doesn't work.

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