Friday, 9 September 2011

Frabjous Standard & Frabjous Wild Cherry side by side

Hi All,
There is an ongoing tradition in the world of brewing of starting the cascade with a basic 'pale ale' brew and altering it as you go to make smaller volume but more complex brews. My Saisons are my first attempt at this style of brewing. Luckily I was bumped from a flight today so have an extra weekends grace at home.
I have leapt on this opportunity by firstly making a curry(Tikka Massala base with huge amounts of Turkish chilli, Burnt Garlic and Onions) for myself & Catherine and secondly by asking Catherine which beer she prefers out of the two Saisons while the curry is cooking!

It transpires that Catherine is more a fan of the purer simpler dry Saison whereas I being a Hophead and General Big Belgian beer freak prefer the Wild Cherry Saison for its larger flavours and somehow (not sure how this happened) sweeter taste. You can tell they are related but are different enough from each other to deserve the different names.

The blonde is very nice and dry and has a nice 'oh yes you know i'm Belgian' profile. The Wild Cherry version has a similar profile but also has another flavour best described as and reminiscent of 'A Strike Bar'.

For those not lucky enough to grow up In Britain in the 1980's (First half, Early) a Strike bar was an E-number laden fruit (mostly citrus) stretchy chew bar that risked your dental work every time you bought one. My Strike Bars were bought from 'Frankies Van' where you could also buy 'single' cigarettes and hire dodgy bootleg movies but i digress as these particular delights were in later years.

Let's just stick to the Strike bars for the moment shall we? Lot's of E number stylie sweets from back in the day have this Belgian yeast ester driven flavour. Luckily its not dominant in either of these beers(although it is there enough to awaken 11 year old Joe) and coupled with the sweetness(Brett C i think) of the Wild cherry it makes for a rather nice little combination.

I would suggest to anybody that is planning a decent length brew to plan ahead and siphon off a part of it for further experimentation. The only caveat is that the more you experiment the stronger the beer will become but it is well worth the risk! :)

Its hard to put into words the flavours experienced in these beers so i'll leave you with this thought.

Pink Beer eh, who'd have thunk it? :)

Brew on my fellow Ninjas.

P.S We make no apologies for the lack of clarity in these beers. If you want superclear, Dead in the bottle, minimal flavour, high volume beers see Mr Busch or Mr Miller, we make real beers hereabouts, oh yes! :)

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Sunday, 4 September 2011

Frabjous Wild Cherry Saison

Hi All,
I returned from a trip to Southern Italy yesterday. During the trip i was lucky enough to stumble upon a bar called 'John Martin's' in Brindisi. A great little pub with absolutely atrocious slow and unsmiling bar staff and a couple of beer coolers brim full with Belgian and German beer! I took the lads i was with on a short circuit beer tour of both these countries then had the arrogance(fueled by Scheider Weisse) to get my beer choosing hat on and start picking beer for people. Luckily nobody was hurt during this experiment and i can proudly state that there are two Canadian and four Scotsmen who now know a bit more about beer and may choose differently when at the bar! My personal favourites were La Chouffe Blonde and Bruin served in 750ml wire caged corked bottles and also Pauwel Kwak served in the same way which simply blew me away.

The point of this waffle is that my pallete was accustomed to some heavy duty Belgian beer goodness when i arrived home yesterday. I was in an excellent position to judge my Wild Cherry Sasion(completely impartial of course) :). It totally surprised me by being a Beautiful beer! Its very dry but still manages to retain a good balancing mouthfeel. The Brett C is present with a nice tropical flavour and odour. Absolutely zero hop presence, its all thirst quenching fruity tartness and a beautiful pink colour with a wee cherry kick. Carbonation is not as high as i hoped for and clarity is affected by a chill haze.

The difficulty of being a brewers wife!

If this beer had been in John Martin's i'd have been buying it alongside the Kwak and i genuinely didn't expect to get such a good result with an experimental beer. I am off to Saudi Arabia on Friday so no beer for a month from then onwards. There is a definete benefit to making more complicated multi layered beers but at 6.6%ABV its not a session beer! :)

Thanks to all who've been reading the blog. Hope you are drinking good beer where ever you are. Hi in particular to Lithuania and Croatia and also Finland and Sweden. Cheers for assisting the blog past 7,000 views.
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