Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Beers Of London Series 75. London Fields Brewery - Bootlegger Series: Double IPA

Beers Of London Series
75. London Fields Brewery -
Bootlegger Series: Double IPA 7.2%

Even though I've reviewed London Fields Brewery beers before, I've picked up a couple of beers from them recently that I'm not only anxious to drink, but I think are noteworthy enough to write about.

The Double IPA is the sixth beer in London Fields Bootlegger Series, focussing on alternative styles, high abvs and alternative ingredients. There were three released last year, an oak-aged Weizen Doppel Bock, a Pumpkin Ale and an American Black Ale, which have been followed up with a Chocolate Porter, a Marzen and the Double IPA in February, March and April this year respectively. The additional fact that this bottle was only delivered to Sourced Market last Thursday and that I'm keen to review it as fresh as possible is another albeit understandable reason for this post.

As I want to get on and drink this beer I shall only inform you that it's brewed using Chico Ale Yeast (also known more formally as Wyeast 1056) and huge quantities of Amarillo, Chinook and Simcoe hops before I open it up. I hope you're ok with that? Good, shall we begin.

It pours a murky orange brown, it has had plenty of time to settle and it was poured carefully so I'm assuming that is its natural state - which I don't mind one bit, and throws a good off-white head that quickly fades to top the beer nicely. The aroma screams pine and orange peel at you from the outset, but there's also mango in there and more than a pinch of white pepper mixed up with some fresh green spring onion and a few leaves of lemon balm. I could quite happily sit here sniffing this for quite some time to be honest as all these smells roll around just inside the lip of the glass, its really rather lovely. Smooth and quite muted over the tongue, I really expected a beer with this sort of aroma to bite hard with bitterness but instead its slick and rather dignified. A delicious creamy toffee flavour makes way for some sharp citrus, a sticky concentrated orange sauce with some grated grapefruit and lemon peel before this is washed away by some a dainty peach cordial, it's a satisfying rise and fall, not abrupt but gentle and full of taste. The finish dries to leave the sensation left from sucking an orange boiled sweet, perhaps a little barley sugar too, sticky and oily with a sharp spike of bitterness that somehow takes it to a different place, like a summer walk in a damp forest, warm and dank which lasts for a long long time.

If you think that I like this beer you'd be spot on. You might not have gathered it from my admittedly short preamble but I wasn't sure that this beer would deliver on the hyperbole written on the label (you'll have to read it for yourself when you get a bottle to see what I mean) as I'm a natural cynic when it comes to such things. This is however, a balanced and smooth beer, full of flavour without being mouth-puckerinrly headache-inducingly so, and above all it tastes fresh fresh fresh. I love it and if you can get a bottle and drink it soon then I hope you will too. A schizophrenic beast of a brew indeed.

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