Tempest Brewing Co. Mango Berliner (4.2%)

Interestingly, or not, this beer smells of fresh mango flesh but there’s absolutely no hint of mango in the flavour.
None.
There’s a soft tartness and a lot of water, fresh and refreshing, just like water ought to be.
The hopping is minimal, just a hint of something pithy and green, and the malts are an almost overly subtle caramel and shortcake whisper.
People who know me know I love Tempest, but this isn’t very good.

Source: EeBria

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Belgians In Britain: The Brouwerij Haacht Range

Brouwerij Haacht is an independently owned family brewery, brewing beer in Belgium for over a hundred years.
They make a wide range of modern and traditional beer styles and now they’re being imported into the UK by Branded Drinks.
I thought I’d get hold of a bunch and give them a try.

Super 8 IPA (6%) is a part of Haacht’s series of modern style beers, and what’s more it’s pretty good.
There’s a solid round chewy malt body that’s full of toffee and shortcake, honey, bran flakes and apple strudel.
This is buoyed up by a hit of warm earthy fruity yeast while the hops bring aniseed and lemon curd, nettle tea and pithy hedgerow greenery.
All this from a beer that sits a deep copper in my glass, it’s creamy head fizzing with life and smelling of bread dough and apple brandy.

 

Super 8 Blanche (5.1%) is a fresh and crisp Blonde Wheat beer whose orange zest jumps out at you as you pour.
It’s a bright and fruity and it draws you down into the pale gold beer.
Once inside you find a creamy smooth vanilla waffle and sticky caramel malt body and a big slap of green herbal hops.
The orange peel adds a dry and pithy, sharp and zingy fruitiness and the coriander hums away with a subtle spiciness in the background.

 

Primus (5.2%) is well made EuroLager in a can, and as such there’s not a whole lot that I can say about it, save for it does absolutely everything you could want from this style.
It’s clean and crisp with a lightly spiced caramel aroma, the malts are soft and smooth, with toffee popcorn and a little crunchy biscuit, and the hops give you that green spicy hedgerow thwack that a good Lager should.

 

 

Super 8 Export (4.8%) is far far better than Primus.
It’s another Lagered beer, this time at a lower ABV, and though it shares many of the things going on in Primus, everything is lighter and fresher, cleaner somehow, and certainly far dryer and much more crisp.
It’s still all hedgerow greenery, but here the hops are brighter and more lively, the soft brown sugar caramel of the malting is more subtle, and everything is balanced in just the right way.
This is a good Lager.

 

 

Mystic (3.5%) is a delightful low alcohol Kriek that pours a lovely deep red with a little pink head and smells of cherry jam.
The cherries are, quite rightly, all over this beer, round and fruity, fleshy and fresh, they have a hint of tartness at their edges, but are made luscious and sweet by the toffee popcorn, honey and caramel malting.
Very nice indeed, though I’d love to try it brewed with a much higher ABV.

 

 

Tongerlo Blonde (6%) is a light and crisp Abbey Beer that pours a bright gold with a big fluffy head and smells of spicy heather honey.
There’s a soft creamy almond butter, caramel doughnut and honey malt body and a big hit of earthy yeast spiciness.
Over this the hops are a sharp and pithy herbal green splash of colour, with lemon zest and nettle tea adding a crisp dryness to the long bitter finish.

 

 

Tongerlo Bruin (6.5%) is a really nice Abbey Dubbel.
It’s a deep mahogany beer with a big foaming head and a smell full of treacle tart.
This is a beer all about its malting, brown sugar and pancakes, treacle toffee, honey and digestive biscuits.
There’s a slap of dewy damp ferns, camomile tea and sticky orange marmalade from the hops, and just a hint of chocolate coated cherries in the round satisfying finish.

 

 

Source: Brouwerij Haacht

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The Wild Beer Co. Sleeping Limes (4.6%)

A Lager brewed with limes and sea salt, this tastes nothing more to me than an old fashioned Lager & Lime, the kind of beer my dad would buy me a half of if we were in the pub when I wasn’t yet old enough to drink.
As such it’s a beer that I’m enjoying in a nostalgic way, a beer I’m happy to have tried for the memories it brings, but a beer that I’ll be more than happy to never drink again.
There’s a light sweetcorn/popcorn thing going on in the body of the beer, but where everything should feel smooth and creamy, here it’s slimy and oily.
There’s virtually no hop presence except for a tiny swish of herbal greenery, and the salt that pops up in the finish is overly powerful, making everything else feel weak and insipid.
Thanks for the memories, but I’d rather not go there again.

Source: EeBria

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Brouwerij Frontaal Billiard (10.1%)

This, my friends, is something very special.
Billiard is an Oatmeal Coffee Imperial Stout that wipes the floor with every other beer of its style.
The malting is round and rich and creamy, vanilla ice cream, treacle tart and Tiramisu lie at the beer’s heart.
Then there’s the most deliciously dry and woody black coffee and lip smackingly bitter dark chocolate, while the aroma is round and juicy with plums and pears drenched in brandy.
You also find some seriously pithy and resinous redwood bark, tobacco and leaf litter from the hops as you head towards the rum and raisin, damp oak and freshly lacquered fence posts of the finish.
I want a barrel of this.

Source: Imperial Beer Club

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Brouwerij Kees Anniversary #03 (8%)

This is a Coconut Porter, and a rather good Coconut Porter at that.
It’s warm and round and boozy, with an aroma that smells of Christmas biscuit tins and a malting that’s rich and crunchy, chewy and sweet.
You find honey and shortcake, pancakes and maple syrup, some chocolate and a splash of black coffee followed by a little spicy hit of sharp green nettles and hazel leaves from the hops.
The coconut adds a milky woody creaminess that makes the finish feel smooth and satisfying.

Source: Imperial Beer Club

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