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Christmas Beers - Never Again

your favourite tipple - wine, beer, spirits
JMN2
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Christmas Beers - Never Again

#19290

Postby JMN2 » January 1st, 2017, 8:35 pm

Had a large selection of dark, malty, spicy, boozy, strong Christmassy beers. Just couldn't drink much at all. Cloying anf not refreshing. For me beers are mostly against thirst, slight buzz takes second place. Next Christmas, pale ales, IPA's, bitters.

redsturgeon
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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#19325

Postby redsturgeon » January 1st, 2017, 10:42 pm

JMN2 wrote:Had a large selection of dark, malty, spicy, boozy, strong Christmassy beers. Just couldn't drink much at all. Cloying anf not refreshing. For me beers are mostly against thirst, slight buzz takes second place. Next Christmas, pale ales, IPA's, bitters.


Been there, done that. Only one bottle, max two of the thick dark stuff for me these days.

John

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#19344

Postby foundone » January 2nd, 2017, 12:27 am

I normally go with a strong IPA, current favourite Okhams Green Devil 6%, followed by Thornbridges Jaipur 5.9%

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#19589

Postby DiamondEcho » January 2nd, 2017, 9:10 pm

Given the choice I step-change the beers during a night. Either a couple of more iconic/heavier brews at the start, then light thereafter [since the palette gets worn out anyway]. Or light during a meal, with a heavier one near the end and/or during dessert etc.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#19646

Postby bionichamster » January 3rd, 2017, 9:35 am

I quite like a fruit beer every now and again (Lindemans being by far and away the best of them). This christmas someone gave me a box of beers they had purchased with me in mind at Tebay services, in amongst the more traditional ales etc was a Damson beer (Stringers brewery, Ulverstone). Now i've tried a few British 'fruit' beers and frankly have been hugely dissapointed in comparison with those Belgian lambic ones which actually taste like they've been made with significant amounts of fruit. The lambics like Kriek are apparently fermented by airborne yeasts and the fruits sit in them for many months, in contrast I reckon some of the more local ones I've had are just a mediocre ale to which some bright spark has added a dash of ribena, they often taste either not of fruit or are a bit 'watery' (mind you I found a few belgian ones to be a bit 'watery', e.g. some of Timmermans more exotic flavours)

Anyway this Damson ale was full of promise, 'refermented with wild yeast' check! 'whole damsons, skin, stones and all chucked in' check! 'damsons sit in the beer for six months' check! all sounds good.
So here goes...pop open the bottle expecting a gloriously sour but sweet wack on my tastebuds. Yeuuurgh! WTF, I obviously didn't read the bit about it being a "dark beer". The belgian lambics are fairly light this wasn't, it was much more complex than something like Lindemans Kreik which is essentially very fizzy cherry juice with that unique lambic tang and a long lasting lingering sour fruity note. But more 'complex' in the same way that mixing Vimto with Dr Pepper and Guinness would be more complex than a glass of fruit juice, increased complexity does not neccesarily mean greater enjoyment. Hard to describe the taste, very liquoricy, quite a tounge coater (tannin?) and much more bitter than the Belgians. Sort of what I would expect a dark ale with a good slug of sloe gin to be like. After getting over the dissapointment and about half way through it my pallet was adjusting, and by the time I'd finished I could have considered a second. If you're looking for something different then maybe give it a go, but it is very different, but hey it's got fruit in it so it's healthy right?

It wan't the only unusal beer in the gift, but i'm not sure I'm ready for 'Nuclear Sunset' yet!

BH

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#20351

Postby AleisterCrowley » January 5th, 2017, 2:08 pm

foundone wrote:I normally go with a strong IPA, current favourite Okhams Green Devil 6%, followed by Thornbridges Jaipur 5.9%


I like Jaipur, but they've moved to ridiculously small "Budweiser size" bottles now... :(
I know I could just buy more bottles, bit it somehow offends me.

On a brighter note - my local Spar back home in Shropshire stocks Titanic Plum Porter, so I stocked up...

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#20801

Postby foundone » January 6th, 2017, 10:06 pm

I agree about the bottle sizes, it hardly seems worth the effort of opening a 330ml. I drove to the brewery and complained (it's only 10mins away). They said that they had just installed a new bottling line which only did 330ml and that everyone was going that way :roll:

I think it's a big mistake but their 330ml are more expensive than some of the other brands 500ml anyway.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#20859

Postby JMN2 » January 7th, 2017, 9:46 am

foundone wrote:I agree about the bottle sizes, it hardly seems worth the effort of opening a 330ml. I drove to the brewery and complained (it's only 10mins away). They said that they had just installed a new bottling line which only did 330ml and that everyone was going that way :roll:

I think it's a big mistake but their 330ml are more expensive than some of the other brands 500ml anyway.


They're already behind the curve with 330ml bottles - every brewery seems to do canning now with fancy colourful designs. Hardknott Dave said that if he could start all over again he would can and not bottle at all.

What next? Nips?

Off to the local beer shop now. 8-)

redsturgeon
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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#20866

Postby redsturgeon » January 7th, 2017, 10:08 am

I am a great fan of Belgian beer which mostly seems to come in 330ml bottles. That size is more appropriate perhaps for the stronger beers or for beers that you wish to drink cold without them warming up too much (even I love an ice cold refreshing bland lager from time to time.)

I'd agree that for a session type beer of perhaps 4% then a larger bottle may make sense but I am happy with the 300ml size and can always open another if I need to.

John

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21321

Postby Hallucigenia » January 8th, 2017, 8:09 pm

I've seen suggestions that this year will see more "big" (440/500ml) cans.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21346

Postby AleisterCrowley » January 8th, 2017, 10:03 pm

The return of the Watney's Party 7 perhaps?
https://www.thedrinksbusiness.com/2014/ ... -brands/7/

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21358

Postby Clitheroekid » January 8th, 2017, 10:59 pm

JMN2 wrote:They're already behind the curve with 330ml bottles - every brewery seems to do canning now with fancy colourful designs. Hardknott Dave said that if he could start all over again he would can and not bottle at all.

I have never once had canned beer that tasted half as good as its bottled / draught equivalent.

There always seems to be a metallic taste, even from those cans where they've put some sort of coating on the inside of the can (presumably to remove that taste).

It may be a personal thing - friends who have also drunk the same canned beer say they can't taste it - but it means I've studiously avoided it for many years (except in case of emergency!)

The return of the Watney's Party 7 perhaps?

Please no! I remember desperately trying to hide these at parties as our secret stash, usually in an obscure part of the garden, and then being so `confused' that when the need arose we couldn't remember where we'd hidden them.

The rusting remains are probably still there for future archaeologists to ponder over why 20th century man buried cans of beer.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21421

Postby redsturgeon » January 9th, 2017, 8:58 am

AleisterCrowley wrote:The return of the Watney's Party 7 perhaps?
https://www.thedrinksbusiness.com/2014/ ... -brands/7/


This truly was the spawn of the devil! Can't remember ever opening one when the froth did not hit the ceiling! Then trying to pour the first pint was an exercise in futility...most ending up on the floor or table.

I am with CK in my distrust of canned beers and can't remember any tasting as good as the best beers from a bottle. I am willing to believe that this may be a false belief on my part and I must admit to actually enjoying some canned craft beers that came with my advent calendar this year.

John

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21573

Postby DiamondEcho » January 9th, 2017, 3:56 pm

Hallucigenia wrote:I've seen suggestions that this year will see more "big" (440/500ml) cans.


There are beers that come in larger cans, like the Danish 1L Faxe can. The Japanese Asahi brand also have a whole range of can sizes, from titchy, maybe 100ml, 330, 500, 1L, then more sizes up to c5L.
Some German beers come in 'party kegs' too, like the Bitburger and Warsteiner 5L mini-kegs.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21599

Postby swill453 » January 9th, 2017, 4:49 pm

DiamondEcho wrote:Some German beers come in 'party kegs' too, like the Bitburger and Warsteiner 5L mini-kegs.

I bought a few of the Old Speckled/Golden Hen mini kegs when Morrisons had them on offer for a tenner. Went down pretty well, as long as you closed the vent at every opportunity, and finished it in 3 days or so.

Scott.

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21627

Postby DiamondEcho » January 9th, 2017, 5:29 pm

swill453 wrote:
DiamondEcho wrote:Some German beers come in 'party kegs' too, like the Bitburger and Warsteiner 5L mini-kegs.

I bought a few of the Old Speckled/Golden Hen mini kegs when Morrisons had them on offer for a tenner. Went down pretty well, as long as you closed the vent at every opportunity, and finished it in 3 days or so. Scott.


IME with the German ones I mentioned, once you've tapped them, then it's preferable to finish them off within a few hours. Leaving them in the fridge opened for a day or two IME does them no favours at all.

I've not had many of those 5L mini-kegs. Last time I bought a few was in Singapore where they were on clearance at a supermarket. I couldn't believe it they were priced down to about S$20 each [say £10]. That was/is about what you'd pay for a 1/2L of similar beer in a local bar. Naturally I emptied the shelf of them feeling that I'd hit the Klondike. I distinctly recall the old woman at the check-out was very angry as my 4-5 tins were so heavy, it stopped the cash-til conveyor belt operating - :)

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#21661

Postby Hallucigenia » January 9th, 2017, 7:19 pm

DiamondEcho wrote:There are beers that come in larger cans, like the Danish 1L Faxe can. The Japanese Asahi brand also have a whole range of can sizes, from titchy, maybe 100ml, 330, 500, 1L, then more sizes up to c5L.
Some German beers come in 'party kegs' too, like the Bitburger and Warsteiner 5L mini-kegs.


A lot of microbreweries do them for takeaways - but I wasn't thinking of that, or the multinationals. This was specifically in reference to the kind of "craft" (for want of a better word) British breweries who maybe experimented with 330ml cans in 2016, through either mobile canning or outsourcing, and it's been successful enough for them to think about how they would do it "properly" in house. An example is Cloudwater whose new canner will be able to take 500ml cans although most will be 330ml - they talk about the advantages here : http://cloudwaterbrew.co/blog/cans-arent-cool

Personally I don't get any metal taint from modern "craft" cans, and while the beer is generally not can-conditioned (pace Moor), it still allows you to have better beer than you might otherwise - particularly eg at outdoor events where there's a no-glass licence and the alternative is PET bottles of Heineken.. And I think in general the quality of beer going into cans is pretty similar to bottles, although too many breweries underestimate the risk of oxygen ingress during packaging. But sorting O2 levels will come - the real QA obsessives like Cloudwater and Thornbridge are leading the way on that front

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#22414

Postby JMN2 » January 12th, 2017, 10:46 am

Hallucigenia, agree with you totally.

Also, those 5L minikegs are very handy for a homebrewer, but really have to be finished off in 2 days max. That's barely 9 pints so no great task. 8-)

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#22431

Postby AleisterCrowley » January 12th, 2017, 11:38 am

Rule No 1 with 'craft cans' is - Never drink from the can ! (Except in emergencies of course)

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Re: Christmas Beers - Never Again

#22768

Postby JMN2 » January 13th, 2017, 10:05 am

Rule no 1 addendum - use a mason jar when ever available.


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