A Quart of Ale± #66
On the craft journey with Hope's "Classic Gose", White Hag, Tom Crean and Whiplash
Hope “Limited Edition No 25“ Classic Gose 5.00%, 440 can
This Gose is Number 25 in Hope’s ever-growing range of limited editions. Gose, as you probably know, is a German sour beer, traditionally brewed in Leipzig and named after a local river.
Got a nice white head when I poured this but it didn’t last long. Colour is a cloudy lemon, with quite a few micro-bubbles racing up through the haze. Aromas are lemony, with a hint of sourdough starter. And that strong citrus element is also found on the palate, a tangy and very refreshing palate indeed. And very enjoyable too!
They say: Gose is a sour beer, traditionally soured with lactic bacteria, but we actually used a special yeast strain that produces lactic acid as well as alcohol. While many modern Goses have fruit additions, we opted to keep it classic and let the simple mixture of acidic and mildly salty flavours shine on their own. …It goes really well with strong soft cheeses such as goats cheese as well as seafood.
Now where’s my St Tola?
By the way, the first Gosé I came across (at the 2014 LitFest), was made by the Brown Paper Bag Project, Irish brewers without a brewery but who travelled at home and abroad and hiring out or collaborating with existing brewers.
That beer, Fano Bryghus, was made in partnership with the local brewery on the Danish island of Fanoe. Sea salts and coriander were added to the wheat and barley. It had cider like characteristics and the acidity and salinity were prominent. That one was very good with oysters!
Colour: 6 EBC
IBU (bitterness): 6
Serve at: 6 to 8 C.
Who are Hope? Hope Beer started out in 2015 when the brewery was founded by four friends with a passion for beer and business. What began as a series of late-night kitchen table discussions is now a state-of-the-art brewery, producing an extensive range of award-winning premium craft beers.
Hope produces a core range of five distinct beer styles which are available all year round as well as two seasonals and a wide range of limited-edition beers.
All Hope beers are brewed, bottled, canned and kegged at Howth Junction on Dublin’s Northside and are crafted to be the perfect accompaniment to food. Each beer has its own distinct name, story and taste experience.
White Hag “Magic Mist” Juicy Pale Ale 5.0%, 440 can CraftDirect
Always a bit of magic attached to the White Hag. Here it’s of the misty variety, hazy under a white foamy hat. And aromas enough to wake the spellbound, citrus in there with the mango and passionfruit and a basket of other lovelies. And all the exotic flavours burst onto the palate in a stream of oozy bitterness, soft and juicy. Play misty for me. Again. And again.
The Label explains: The tribe of the water goddess Danu, the Tuatha De Dannan enshrouded themselves in a mystical fog rendering their presence invisible to human eyesight.
Tom Crean Druids Wheat Beer 4.2%, 440 can Brewery Sales
The unmistakeable aroma of smoked bacon rises from the lemon coloured body, the head already vanished. You’ll notice quite a crowd of bubbles rising through the slight haze. The aroma continues but not a trace of the clove or banana usually associated with wheat beer as the liquid spreads cool across the palate. Brewer Bill is his own man; he has eased up on the hops and allowed the grain and the yeast the leading roles here. The route may not be the usual one but the result, refreshment, is certainly there. And the smoky aspect diminishes as you sip.
They say: A beer that gives acknowledgement to our rich local ancient history, we used delicately smoked oak malted barley, the reduced hop bill allows the full wheat and yeast flavours to dominate…We use just a tiny amount of hops here in this refreshing beer… let the grain and the yeast do all the work.”
Everyone at the tasting was surprised by the “smoky” ambush but all seemed to enjoy the refreshing element of this Kerry wheat beer.
By the way, if you’re heading towards Kenmare you could do worse than make Tom Crean’s your base camp as you’ll score highly on three fronts: B&B, restaurant with bar/brewery. And even higher on the hospitality front as the brewer Bill and chef Aileen are terrific hosts.
Whiplash Rollover Session IPA 3.8%, 330 can Bradleys
This was session beer of the year last time and this most recent tasting confirmed it’s as likeable as ever.
Pale yellow colour with a short-lived white head over a hazy body. Citrus fronts the aromatics. And the quartet of hops dominate the palate. Amazing that this has so much hops and still weighs in at less than 4.00% abv. Quite a concentration of hops then, before a lip-smacking finalé.
They say: Same hop rate as our DIPA’s, less than half the alcohol. A very heavily hopped Session IPA: this comes at you with buckets of Simcoe, Ekuanot, Citra and Mosaic hops with a light touch of malts and an easy crushable body. Unfiltered, hazy, hoppy and juicy – Rollover is a New England inspired IPA without the heavy alcohol in tow.