It can be hard enough tracking down new beers from the many breweries cropping up all over the UK, but this craze for malt and hops is global, and hunting down new the foreign brews can be even trickier. Unless you’re a frequent traveler, or are lucky enough to live near a reliable importer of beer, you’ll have to turn to the internet for your international beer fix. We believe it’s what the web was invented for.
Along with more straightforward ‘fill your basket’ online retailers, the beer subscription club model has really taken off and this week we’ve taken our first delivery of gleaming bottles and cans from one of the most popular, Beer52. Our box of eight brews is a Europhile’s delight, containing booze from Spain, Norway and Belgium alongside home grown English and Scottish beers. But the first bottle to have its crown cap prized off in eager excitement is a well traveled affair in its own right – a collaboration beer from breweries in Denmark (Beer Here) and Italy* (Brewfist) enlivened with New Zealand hops and a touch of wheat and rye.
With the crown cap rattling around on the living room floor there was no time to waste in dispensing the beer, so I steadily poured the cloudy, light brown liquid into my (Belgian) beer glass. A thin, white head muddled around on the surface releasing a very muted aroma of malt and hops, merely hinting at the hop bonanza to follow.
The bitter flavour is intense. A sonorous boom of slightly sharp earthy notes, crackling with spiciness and just a hint of tropical fruit and citrus. Like the beery love child of Luciano Pavarotti and Helena Christensen it is loud and triumphant but undercut with a grace and sophistication that makes it a pleasure to drink.
With the thirst for new beers reaching fever pitch we suspect more jet-setting collaborators will bang their hoppy heads together to create ever more adventurous and exciting beers. And if they’re as good as this one, here’s hoping the beer clubs keep on finding them…
*The first Italian craft beer I ever had was in a Danish bar. I’ll guess this is coincidence.
Save a tenner on your first Beer52 box!
If you like the sound of Beer52 and fancy getting a £10 voucher off your first box then your luck is in – we’ve got hold of a special voucher code for you. Simply enter ‘THIRSTY10’ when prompted by their website www.beer52.com