Tuesday, September 19, 2023

CorkBillyBeers #45. Craft with ales, pils & stout from Rye River, Ballykilcavan, Yellowbelly and Bavik

CorkBillyBeers #45

Craft with ales, pils & stout from Rye River, Ballykilcavan, Yellowbelly and Bavik.


Rye River Nocturne Export Stout, 6.0% ABV, 500 ml bottle Pettitt’s SV Athy

In the dark of the night.. a nocturne worthy of an encore.

Rye River's Nocturne Export Stout is a midnight-hued duet of espresso and dark chocolate, with a hint of smoke that lingers like a tremble on the nose. The flavours are equally intense, with rich intense roast caramel gently blanketing the palate and extending into a lengthy finish. This is a stout that demands to be savoured, and it's sure to leave you wanting more.

This is one nocturne worthy of an encore. Highly Recommended.

Geek Bits

Malts - Carafa Special 2, Chocolate Malt, Munich 2 Malt, Pale Malt, Special W, Smoke Malt. 

Hops - Columbus

They say:  We love beer, so when we started out it was our plan to make great tasting beer that people loved. We've grown a lot since then, taking on more brewers and beer lovers, experimenting, tasting, talking, trying, failing, trying again, and succeeding.


Ballykilcavan Millhouse Session IPA, 3.5% ABV, 440 ml can Pettitt’s SV Athy

Ballykilcavan promotes this as a light, refreshing session ale - “our favourite barbeque beer! Low in alcohol, but double dry hopped for maximum flavour.”

Colour is a light orange, very hazy indeed with a small-bubbled white head. Aroma is a forward citrus. It is double hopped so the hoppy influence has the edge on the palate, light and crisp with refreshing citrus and a piney backbone.

Ingredients are Water, Malted Barley, Wheat, Oats, Hops, and Yeast. The Barley and Water are sourced from their own farm where the family has been since 1639. The hops used, all from the USA, are Citra, Amarillo and Mosaic. The brewery says that the organic oats from the neighbouring farm, The Merry Mill, contribute to the “lovely balance”.

It is available in cans and kegs with an IBU of 48. Highly Recommended.


Yellowbelly Citra Pale Ale (APA), 4.8% ABV, 440 ml can Bradleys

I hadn’t come across a Yellowbelly beer in a long while until I recently picked this up in Bradley’s of Cork. They had a few cans of this popular pale ale in stock but that was it as regards Yellowbelly and it is also the only beer on the brewer’s website shop.

It has been “dry hopped to the gills with Citra” and it shows immediately both in the aromas and on the palate. The other hop used is Huell Melon and the malts are Pilsner, Munich, Wheat.

Brewed with the finest German and Belgian malts, fermented with a super clean American ale yeast, the resulting beer should be enjoyed as fresh as possible to appreciate the grapefruit and pine aroma and clean finish.

Hazy yellow is the colour here, and a white head (size and length depending on how you pour, probably best if on draught). The mix of ingredients here is really well-judged resulting in a really well-balanced beer where the Citra hop takes centre stage.

Not too surprised that this American Pale Ale from the southeast is still around. They regard it as a flagship beer. Citra Pale Ale can be enjoyed year-round on draught or in can from your favourite bars, restaurants and off-licences. It was voted Best Beer in Ireland  in the 2019 Beoir Awards


Bavik Super Pils, 5.2%, 330 ml can Bradleys

Highlighting its World Beer Awards Belgium Gold at the top of the label, Bavik continues in like vein: “..only one Pilsner remains uncompromised, brewed for quality and consistency. No adjustments. Never pasteurized. Slowly Brewed. Cold Maturation. Crystal clear. It’s Bavic Super Pils or nothing!”

Looks good though in the glass, a bright light gold  (it has been filtered until clear) with a soft white head. The aromas are hoppy, modestly so, nothing overpowering. Once it hits the palate, you feel the softness and appreciate the crisp character. Full-bodied for sure and deeply refreshing as the delicate and refreshing taste of hop bitters embellishes the beer at the finalé.


This little red can, a retro style of theirs, certainly delivers. One for your shortlist.

They say: “Bavik Super Pils obtains its unique taste and aroma from its exceptional brewing process. Our pilsner has not been diluted, we only use aroma hops, guarantee a long and cold maturation process, and pasteurization is out of the question. Those four elements result in this unique pilsner. Never compromise on taste! Moreover, we brew Bavik Super Pils in perfectly hygienic conditions, so pasteurisation is not an option. This way Bavik Super Pils keeps its unique light hoppy taste. Win win!”

Unsurprisingly, this pils continues to scoop awards. Brewers De Brabandere have stuck to its traditional recipe for five generations and, as always, time and quality prove the most important factors in producing a good beer.

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