You gotta know I'm feeling love.....
Ok I'm going to throw it out there, I've got the brewery equivalent of a man crush going on at the moment with Neon Raptor Brewing Co. It seems I'm not the only one either as their beers are flying off the shelves faster than Usain Bolt driving a Bugatti.
Their last two brews, Dune Hunter and Chaos & Earthquakes sold out within hours of them putting them on sale and fortunately we were on the ball and managed to grab a couple of cases before the masses descended like tinned potato shoppers in a post-Brexit world.
Dune Hunter is a New England IPA brewed with the most amount of oats ever used by Neon Raptor to give the beer a rich, murky appearance and an unbelievably smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Sweet fruit emanates at first from the beers fluffy head and then washes over the palate in waves of dank, tropical goodness.
Absolutely tremendous stuff from a brewery that it appears can do no wrong right now.
Oh my God, I'm a giant with an appetite........
Two of the UK's best, most consistent breweries, Magic Rock Brewing and Cloudwater Brew Co, have reunited for a repeat brew of Big Dipper and the results are as tremendous as you might expect.
Big Dipper is a wonderfully balanced, sweet and resinous double IPA packed with peach and mango with a jammy, marmalade finish and no bitterness. With a smooth, soft mouthfeel, and no hint of its 8.3% ABV, this beer goes down way too easily and you could easily be lured into drinking multiple cans and not realising it's strength until the cold air hits you on the way home!
I believe I wanna take you to the promised land.....
Siren Craft Brew teamed up with one of the world's leading meaderies, Arizona based Superstition, to produce Mind On My Honey. Badged as a Creamed Imperial Stout Braggot it really highlighted my ignorance about the world of mead and I immediately hit Google for enlightenment. A braggot is apparently a form of mead made with both honey and barley malt. Based on what I've just written it won't surprise you to learn that I have no benchmark to compare this with but what I can tell you is that if they all taste this good I have serious doubts as to what I've been doing up to this point in my life because this is immense!
The beer itself is as complex as its name. Upon opening your senses are overwhelmed with big, heavy honey aromas. The first taste blew my mind, there was so much going on. A rich, full mouthful of sticky, smokey goodness followed by a hot and spicy chilli tingle as you swallow that lingers on your tongue and throat before the sweet honey finish kicks in.
Bravo Siren, you've absolutely knocked it out of the park with this absolute banger!
You know it when you see it. You know it when it's there. Like Michael Jackson's Thiller. Like Farah Fawcett hair. It's good shit!
Nothern Monk have taken inspiration from their childhoods for the latest in the Patron's Project series and emulated a soft drink that those of a certain vintage loved as kids. Northern Tropics is as close to alcoholic Um Bongo as is humanly possible!
A New England IPA packed with tropical fruit goodness (guava, mandarin, mango and pineapple), infused with lactose and then triple hopped with Citra. The result is an outstandingly smooth, sweet, juicy bastard of a beer reminiscent of a tropical milkshake. Welcome to the jungle baby!
It's all about confidence baby.......
2018 was a massive year for Wander Beyond. After a re-brand they launched in 2017 and made craft beer lovers across the country sit up and take notice. With a passion for brewing big beers that burst at the seams with flavour they were justifiably in the discussion for brewery of the year.
Whilst their huge imperial stouts took the limelight Wander Beyond were equally adept when it came to the light side. A one off batch Milkshake IPA that was inspired by Tiki cocktails, Tiki's Turtles is a complex beer with a LOT going on! Tropical fruit and coconut on the nose entice you in where a sensory overload awaits. To taste you are treated to layers of flavour akin to a mojito cocktail. A big, tart pineapple and lime has you puckering up before a middle section of mint and a creamy coconut and lime finish that lingers on the palate.
Tiki's Turtles is a perfect example of what #tryanuary should be about - pushing the boundaries of flavour and the concept of what a beer should be. Available in limited quantities, so get in quick,
Do it like you do......
It's no secret that we're big fans of Unbarred brewery here at Left Field Beer. Consistent and innovative they seem to smash it out of the park time after time with their releases and SHSF #1 is no exception. The first beer in their single hop, single fruit series SHSF #1 showcases grapefruit and simcoe in the perfect summer pale ale.
On opening you're met with an incredibly sweet, zesty aroma and to taste it's more of the same. Crisp, sharp and zesty with a slight sour finish that will have you puckering your chops in pleasure.
Just like the enchanting, sun drenched indie pop that is Kawala's Do It Like You Do, SHSF #1 is punchy and has that feel good factor that will keep you coming back for more.
I can taste it, it's my sweet beginning.......
Look no further because THIS is your new summer beer! Take a bow Unity because Fresco is summer in a can. The perfect session beer for the balmy summer days we've been having recently.
A special summer release from Unity, this Belgian style IPA pours a golden colour with a large white head and sweet, enticing citurs aromas. Hopped with Amarillo and infused with local lemon balm and honeysuckle it delivers smooth floral, citrus and orange flavours with a hint of sweet honey and a hoppy, floral aftertaste.
This beer is extremely crushable. Enjoy in the sunshine with friends or pair with a spicy curry but be warning it is exremely moorish!
I will captivate you with everything I got........
Southampton based Unity Brewing Co. burst onto the British craft brewing scene in 2016 with a creative ethos and a passion for brewing Belgian inspired beers. Combining traditional and contemporary brewing techniques to put out consistently good flavourful, sophisticated and innovative beers.
Centenaire marks the centennial of Unity Brewing Co. - their 100th brew. A double-mashed beast of a Belgian quadrupel. It comes in at a solid 10.5% but you wouldn't know it......not until the cold air hits you and you attempt to walk home that is! It has a decent body without being too heavy and boasts wonderful flavours of Christmas spice, dried fruit and toffee and a hint of banana and a warming boozy finish. Perfect for drinking now or cellaring and letting the flavours evolve.
Head brewer Jimmy Hatherley states that Unity's ambition is to develop the brewery and their beers whilst always putting quality before quantity, people before profit. All we can say is long may that philosophy continue as Centenaire is an absolute cracker and guaranteed to captivate you!
Somewhere between the sacred silence and sleep.......disorder!
In addition to producing consistently awesome pop culture, dinosaur inspired, can artwork Portsmouth brewers Staggeringly Good continue to impress with their big, bold beers.
Reptile Dysfunction is big fruit smoothie American IPA packed with Alphonso mango, passionfruit, lacose and Peach Habanero flesh. Pouring a lovely murky orange, mango dominates the taste of this juice bomb with subtle notes of passion fruit complementing the beer perfectly. The lactose give the beer a delightfully thick, creamy mouthfeel and you're left with a satisfying spicy tingle from the peach habanero chilli.
Reptile Dysfunction is a beast of a beer. Well balanced and a perfect companion in this end of days climate we're currently experiencing.
To me you're strange and you're beautiful......
Brighton brewers Unbarred have a reputation for creating innovative and delicious beers that you won't find in the rule book and Chai Latte is certainly a case in point. Officially classed as an American Pale Ale this beer is far from a classic pale ale but most definitely has the power to put a spell on you.
Pouring a rich amber colour on pouring you are immediately met with the rich, exotic aroma of honey and spices - cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves. Like a lot of Unbarred's beers Chai Latte has low carbonation which, combined with added oats, gives the beer an incredibly rich, smooth and creamy body. To taste it's more of the same with the spices combining with almond and nutmeg being complimented by sweet honey and vanilla notes.
Chai Latte might not be to every beer lover's taste but for those with a sense of adventure and a taste for the extraordinary it's definitely worth trying. The craftsmanship to pull an ambitious beer like this off is impressive.
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Combining two of his passions in life, beer and music, Music To My Beers is a collection of ramblings from Left Field Beer founder Mike as he seeks to answer life's big question: