Saturday, 25 September 2010

Punk IPA (Brewdog)

Brewdog, always in the news, always trying to create the next benzine / propanol / yeast combo and spawn 3,000% ABV ales.

The above is my conception (mis or otherwise) of the Scottish enfants terribles of the contemporary brewing scene. Their products are sold in slim Banksy-style bottles and are pricey, but The Broadside thought he'd have a crack at one as the clock swung round past midnight and the manor fell silent.

It pours like an IPA, a straw-coloured lagoon but with a lumpy, high head which falls uneven over time to a Matterhorn-profile of creamy foam. The bold nose is an assertive barrel of grapefruit laced with pine tacks and stoppered by a bread cork.

The first taste impression is wet and bitter, although it dries with the second and third impressions through to the finish. The bitterness has a go at the mouth throughout the experience, never quite enough to anaesthetise the drinker's tongue but fairly close. Curiously, the hops are all around yet a hop flavour isn't so present - Brewdog have gone all out to make this an individual effort, like a carbine with a pearl handle.

At the back end, the 6% abv is apparent, as is the grapefruit kick. In fact, this is a grapefruit and hop lovers weapon of choice if a quick inebriating hit is required at the start of an evening. If you ever get to the point of pouring a beer for breakfast (don't) then you'd do worse than consider this.

With Punk, Martin and James at Brewdog have thrown their hat into the US style tough-as-nuts IPA ring. As an English gent, I prefer my ales with a touch more balance but I'm sure this drink will find plenty of fans - in the war against bland this is a field commander.

7/10 - perhaps not one for the armchair malt and balance buff, but a fine bitter cannonball across the bows of convention.

- The Broadside

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