Normally at our house we do advent calendars. This year Lizzie and decided to get each something different than those cheap chocolate ones where you open a window each day. I was very happy when on December 1st I was presented with a beer from Bridge Road Brewers!
The idea is exactly like an advent calendar, but instead of getting a little unsatisfying chocolate each day - you get a different beer! Apparently Bridge Road have been saving up some of their rarer stuff for months in anticipation!
I'm really excited about this pack and naturally I'll document my findings here. I intend to post this wrap up in 5 parts so you can follow along only a few days behind me. I'm hoping it'll be a great journey and I'm looking forward to trying some Bridge Road beers that I haven't had a chance to sample yet. Hopefully you enjoyed the first, second and third installments it's now time for the fourth!
Beechworth Pale Ale smells amazing, with citrus and tropical fruits (particularly what I think is Guava, but could be wrong). The beer is particularly nice and is well balanced. The malt is more pronounced than I remember but plenty of citrus and passionfruit flavours from the hops combine with it beautifully. Would make a great session beer or even gateway beer to the proper world of craft beer.
On to the nose and it's surprisingly sweet initially with plenty of mocha and caramel. There is some chocolate and roastiness as well. The flavour is quite different with roast and chocolate leading the charge, with mocha taking the back seat. There's a spiciness to this beer as well, which is quite interesting. I can't wait to age one of these for a year or two!
The nose was relatively weak with - funnily enough - only sweetish apple on the nose. Maybe this is just my uneducated cider nose talking though... Likewise the taste is mostly apples although there is a bit of funk and it's quite tart after the initial sweetness originally detected on the nose. Cider's certainly aren't my area of expertise - so don't discount this one based on my review!
The malt dominance is what I don't really like about amber ales. That curse strikes again here with Celtic Red Ale; there's plenty of biscuity malt and a little butterscotch on the nose but that's about it. It tastes a little less bland with hints of coffee breaking up the biscuity malt, but still it's quite bland. Amber Ale's just aren't my thing and this one is no exception.
There's plenty of pine and fruit on the nose, the most dominant of which I believe is passionfruit. There's a reasonably amount of caramel malt on the nose but it struggles to provide balance - it's very hoppy! The taste is similar with particularly strong fruit flavours coming from the bitter hops, there is more caramel malts than I had thought from the nose and it is well balanced.
Only one of these reviews to go now. I'm really going to miss this! I'm racking my brains to think which beers could still be left, maybe the Victorian High Country Trail collaboration, Rule 47? I think most of the core range is done - maybe a Chevalier? Whatever it is, I'm sure it'll be good.
Remember it's always Beer O'Clock somewhere in the world!