Friday was International Beer Day. Being the curious sort that I am, I consulted Google and was intrigued to learn that this auspicious occasion was first celebrated in 2008, almost ten years ago. As of 2017, International Beer Day is now marked annually on the first Friday of August in over 200 cities around the globe. Never one to miss an important occasion – particularly one which involves beer – I decided to celebrate International Beer Day with a selection of brews from around Europe.
BBNo 14|04 – Tripel
OK, this one sounds a bit more like a Star Wars droid than a beer. R2-D2’s second cousin maybe?
The cryptic name is apparently down to a very logical numbering system instituted by the brewer (Brews by Numbers), in which the first number denotes the style, whilst the second denotes the recipe. Makes sense I suppose.
I’ve not come across anything from Brews by Numbers (BBN) before now, but I discovered this one last week in an excellent little shop called Royal Mile Whiskies in Bloomsbury St. in central London.
BBNo 14|04 is an abbey style beer brewed in London with a delicate flavour which is, according to the brewer, down to the addition of the German hop Hallertau Blanc. After pouring it carefully into the glass, allow your nose to hover for a moment or two and you’ll detect a strikingly refreshing fruity aroma. In terms of appearance, BBNo 14|04 very much looks the part of an abbey beer with a decent frothy head and a deep, hazy, golden colour.
The flavour is slightly malty and bready, with hints of various different fruits and herbs; there’s plenty going on here to tantalise your taste buds. It has a slightly bitter, citrus aftertaste. All in all, this is a solid take on an abbey ale. I’d certainly have it again and I’m eager to try its sister brews.
To Øl Blossom
Skål (cheers)! In the same shop in Bloomsbury St, I came across a Danish wheat ale called To Øl Blossom. True to its name, this beer has an unmistakably floral taste and aroma.
It is crisp and refreshing with a slightly metallic, bitter aftertaste. It has a hazy amber colour and keeps a frothy white head right to the end of the glass.