This is the first Hardknott beer that I’ve written about, but it’s not the first I’ve drunk. I had a bottle of Æther Blæc earlier in the year, but I really wasn’t in the mood to take notes, which is a shame as it was truly, truly excellent (I have more and will blog about it soon). I was really looking forward to getting my hands on this one, but as it was such a small bottling run, I had to get some mail order from BEERMerchants.com, as no where else had any. Don’t despair though, they have recently brewed some more and my local shop, The Bacchanalia, took a delivery of some on Thursday (as did various other outlets throughout the country).
It poured a deep reddish brown, with a light brown loose head. The head dropped relatively quickly to a covering. The smell reminded me of Stone Arrogant Bastard, there’s quite a heavy crystal malty kind of aroma, but it’s also backed up by some heavy hop action.
The first bottle wasn’t as full bodied as I was expecting, it felt a bit too thin in the mouth, although the further I get through the bottle, the less I noticed it. I’ve since had a second bottle and to be honest, I think I was being over critical of the first one. They both had a definite malty backbone with an almost roasted biscuity edge and the same kind of tongue tickle that you get from Arrogant Bastard. There was bitterness, but it wasn’t overpowering and although it lingered, it wasn’t maybe as much as the tag line on the bottle would suggest.
- Infra Red, 6.5%, 500ml
To be honest, I really, really liked this beer and I’m really glad there is a local source where I can go and buy loads of it. It’s probably going to be in my top three British bottled beers of the year (look out for that post). It’s a must track down and try, as far as I’m concerned