Sunday, 28 April 2013

Beers Of London Series
27. Partizan Brewing - FES (Foreign Export Stout) 8.6%

Partizan have pretty much become my go-to London brewery if I can't get any Kernel, and that's certainly the case for my wife too. You see Partizan beers seem to be available in quantity whenever I want a good sharp and juicy Pale Ale or IPA (like this one), which is pretty much most of the time, but tonight  I'm going over to the dark side. And this one's a bit of a beast. It was also Partizan's first brew back in November last year, and therefore the first to be made available from Kernel's old kit so it has a decent pedigree. Let's see what it's like.
It pours the colour of engine oil, and that's oil that come straight out of an engine that needs it's oil changing as it has a frothy light brown head sitting on the surface. The aroma has serious amounts of coffee, and it's coffee of the big dark and thick Turkish variety, and bitter chocolate too, but there's also some tantalising hints of basil and grapefruit peel in there getting a bit lost in the dense bitter fog, and it took me a little while to pin them down. You might have noticed the word 'bitter' cropping up once or twice in this review already but when it comes to the taste it's written in capital letters. It's also slick, oily and a touch sweet too, and all of the flavour seems to be concentrated at the back of the throat. The best way to describe it is like a big slab of bitter dark chocolate that's been soaked in vodka served up on a few wood shavings, it really does kick like a mule but theirs also a taste in there that reminds me of nothing more that pencil shavings. The finish has a fleeting creaminess, before more of that coffee/chocolate bitterness dries out the throat but it sure is good, particularly is you like your coffee big, strong and boozy.
Did I mention it was bitter?

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