A Quart of Ale± #121
On the craft journey with Bullhouse, 12 Acres, Wicklow Wolf, Eight Degrees
12 Acres Pale Ale 4.6%, 440ml can O’Brien’s Douglas
Not my first time coming across this 12 Acres Pale Ale, from County Laois, with its soft white head that sinks fairly quickly. The colour has more amber than pale. And the aromas speak more of malt than hops and so it continues onto the palate. In addition to their own malt, they also use a small quantity of three European speciality malts, giving even more malt body, texture and additional caramel flavours to the beer.
But the three Americans hops,Cascade, Willamette and Citra, help give bitterness plus citrus and tropical flavours to balance the malt sweetness. So what you get is a delicious refreshing dry hopped golden pale ale.
They say: Our award winning flagship beer, our pale ale is a take on the American Pale Ale (APA) style, with more emphasis on the malt flavour than a traditional APA. Our own spring water is the main ingredient and we add our own pale ale base malt which forms the majority of the grist, to give the fermentable sugars and flavour to our beer…By brewing with our own malted barley and Killeshin spring water from deep beneath the same land, we are producing unique Irish craft beers with traceability from our ground to your glass.”
A lot of attention to detail here and it pays off. Best served 6-8 degrees and it goes great with spicy foods.
8 Degrees Citra Single Hop IPA, 5.7%, 440ml can O’Brien’s Douglas
They, 8 Degrees, say: Citra, with its fruity, juicy aroma and flavour, is one of our favourite hops. To showcase it, we’ve used a simple, yet elegant, malt body …. This is a beer that is both sweet and tart, with a gloriously juicy mouthfeel.
Orange/gold is the colour of this Citra Single Hop from Eight Degrees, the adventurous brewery. It’s got a white bubbly head. Aromas are, surprise, surprise, citrus with a floral touch as well. The combined fruit flavours come out to play on the juicy palate and you’ll note peach, melon, lime, gooseberry, passion fruit and lychee in the mix with the malt on display. It’s a refreshing really well-balanced beer, with a nicely judged bitter finish.
2020 World Beer Awards – Gold
2019 World Beer Awards – Gold
Style: Single hop IPA
Malt: Irish pale ale malt
Hops: Citra, Citra and…Citra!
Strength: 5.7% ABV
Bitterness: 62 IBUs
Food pairings from the Mitchelstown brewery are among the best around:
The bitterness in this Citra Single Hop IPA will cut beautifully through sweet low-and-slow pulled pork served with a chilli-spiked peach relish. The beer also will counterbalance the bold flavours of barbecued chicken wings and play nicely with some grilled spicy fresh Gubbeen chorizo sausages. Try it with a not-too-sweet Key Lime pie for a full-on citrus ending to your meal.
Bullhouse Suds DDH Pale Ale 4.5%, 440ml can Yards & Crafts
Slurp down some Suds! More hops.
That’s the can label encouragement from Belfast Brewery Bullhouse. And this Double Dry Hopped murky orange coloured Pale Ale is certainly well endowed with hops (Eldorado, Talus and Azacca) especially in the aromas, and also on the palate. By now the soft pillowy head has slumped to mere disc but you won’t be worried as the tropical fruits and an input of citrus take over on the smooth and satisfactory ride to the finish. Well made, well balanced.
Last May, Bullhouse took delivery of a brand new (to them) 25HL brewhouse and 6 additional 25HL FVs.
“We’ve always invested more heavily in our cold-side equipment than in any hot-side stuff, because you can make really good wort on pretty basic kit, but you can’t make really good hoppy beer with poor quality cold-side equipment.”
“We ended up going for a system from a cask brewery in England that had closed down. We now have a 50HL direct fire HLT, 40HL German made mash tun (with side manway) and a 30HL direct fire kettle.”
The new kit means Bullhouse have the capability to “double our weekly production to 60HL with the same amount of effort”. Well if this Suds is anything to go by, the investment is well worthwhile. Best of luck.
Wicklow Wolf Jeff Bezos Hopfenweisse 6.3%, 440 ml can Bradleys
Introducing No. 30 in our Endangered Species series; Heff Bezos. This release is another example of our brewer’s passion and creativity running wild. A modern twist on the classic hefeweizen beer style, Heff Bezos is a hop forward wheat beer.
That’s the Wicklow Wolf intro to Heff Bezos. Colour is a murky, opaque, orange with a. Soft slowly sinking bubbly white head. Aromas are a puzzle. I’m expecting banana and clove but initially getting a smoky bacon whiff but go again and it is somewhat closer to the expected combo.
On the palate, the Hopfenweisse continues to carry the banana clove combo yet is is somewhat tartier than the usual. Perhaps the yeast ( a hefeweizen yeast strain from our friends at WHC) is the disrupting factor? No shortage of flavours though with notes of citrus, tropical (including mango) and pine. And, as this first meeting comes to an end, I’m feeling very much at home with Jeff, sorry Heff!
I’m presuming the name Heff Bezos is a play on Jeff Bezos. Jeff, the multi-billionaire (ex Amazon), may be rare but hardly endangered.
Wicklow say this is a style of beer “that we have planned to brew for quite some time now, this Hopfenweisse is brewed with modern hops (Citra, Idaho 7 & Talus) and fermented using a hefeweizen yeast strain from our friends at WHC*. You can expect a burst of citrus & tropical fruit flavours complimented by aromatic, fruity esters coming through from the hefeweizen yeast.”
* WHC Lab is a Fermentation and Quality control company in Wicklow