Saturday, 19 December 2009

Southern Tier Porter and IPA

I got these babies in De Bierkoning while in Amsterdam (I say it again: you just can't get shit like this in Germany), and managed to wait over a month before drinking them.

The Southern Tier Porter seems very highly carbonated, with a huge foamy head that made it take a long time to fill the glass, despite my gentle touch. It looks good though, being an almost opaque, deep, ruddy brown.

The aroma suggests chocolate, vanilla, big chewy toffee and a quite a yeasty undertone, which is ok with me. The initial taste is surprisingly brisk, with a touch of fruitiness. This gives way to a dryness, with roasted malts and a slightly charred finish. It's quite sharp, but in a refreshing way, showing tart, appley notes. The carbonic sharpness grates a little after a while, but overall the roatiness is pleasing, and it mellows a bit after warming and losing a bit of CO2. Quite nice, but I wonder now if this amount of carbonation is usual, and if perhaps it affected the flavour a bit.

The Southern Tier IPA weighs in at 6.5% ABV and shows a slightly hazy, pale amber. It delivers a big, juicy American C-hop hit with a nice caramelly thing going on underneath.

First taste? Oh yeah! Big grapefruit and huge pithy bitterness all on a salty butter and toasty caramel base with resin and fruit dancing around the edges. It's actually really smooth, with massive hop flavours.

Great balance. My kind of IPA. Wonderful. Mmmm...


Mark said...

That IPA sounds cracking! I had the bottles that got in to Beermerchants and the imperial oaked IPA was great so I can just imagine how an un-imperialised version would be!

I understand your beers have reached Pete's house! We're sorting out a time over Christmas to open a few :)

Barry M said...

Imperial oaked IPA sounds bloody interesting. I'll definitely look out for some more ST next time I'm in Amsterdam or Brussels. Shame I have to travel so far!

Hope you enjoy the beers! :)