A little while back Chris Norman – who blogs over at circlemaster.wordpress.com – got in touch about a potential collab post. We opted to go down the route of a bottle swap, each sending a beer from our respective regions, followed by a guest post on each others blogs. So, a mystery Nottinghamshire brew found its way to me (check Chris’s blog to find out which and what I thought of it) and a Sussex brew was sent up to Nottingham. The bottle in question? Take a look at Chris’s review below:
Eyes: pale amber / hazy
Nose: classic hefeweizen
Mouth: bananas / yeast / tiny hint of peach finish
Notes: this is something I’d have been unlikely to come across, were it not for a bottle swap with Rach. This made its way safely all the way from Sussex to Nottingham, making for a very happy arrival.
This didn’t immediately look like a wheat beer – more like a hazy, unfiltered pale ale – but getting it anywhere near your nose immediately sets your mind at rest. It’s a long time since I’ve had a wheat beer (other than Erdinger, which is a pretty good fall-back), and this one has the added bonus of fresh peaches infused during the brewing/maturing process.
The peach isn’t immediately obvious, but acts like a sort of encore. Before that you get the classic flavours of banana and spices with a bit of yeasty graininess. The body is very full and smooth and the whole thing gives you the impression of something that’s been very carefully created and matured.
This is also a lesson in waiting until the very last drop has gone to get the whole picture; how it tastes at the beginning is pleasant enough, but once you get towards the end all those peach notes and other stone-fruit layers emerge. There’s hints of nectarine and orange as well as another appearance by those inevitable bananas. It’s twice the beer it was at the beginning.
This also reminded me (slightly poignantly) that there’s a whole country, and indeed a whole world, of beer out there still to be explored.