There are a few people in the world of beer that get me really excited in the same way that certain bands, record labels and artists have got me excited.
They are, for want of a better descriptor, the outsiders of the scene that they work in.
Mad Hatter are, for me, one of the best of beer’s outsiders, making really interesting beer that is both drinkable and challenging, fun and inventive.
And my old mate Rob from Blackjack Brewery is another of those mavericks.
So to try a beer that is a collaboration between the two is very exciting.
And it doesn’t disappoint.
A Night Out is an IPA brewed with mango, papaya and chilli, and it is as fruity and frisky as you’d imagine.
The beer pours a hazy gold and smells of fruit salad and red peppercorns, warm and sweet and inviting.
Once you dive in you find a round and chewy toasted oat and caramel malt that creates a warm biscuity body, and a bang of fresh herbal leaves, grapefruit zest and lemon curd from the hops.
The mango and papaya give the beer a fleshy fruitiness that’s fresh and sweet, while the chilli is subtle, building an earthy paprika heat that grows as you drink, crackling on your tongue as you head towards the fruity finish.
I’d love for both Mad Hatter and Blackjack to become massive, but while they quietly keep on keeping on, I’m happy to feel like they’re still my own little secret.
Source: Ales By Mail