The Needle & Pin – Craft Beer Club – selection box #12 – July 2018

You all know the score by now. The latest selection from the Craft Beer Club. I’ve actually had 5 out of 6 of the previous selection, 5 out of 6 from March’s box and all of the ones in the previous box to that, so I’m doing a bit better at keeping up with these 🙂

This month’s photo is another one that I’ve borrowed, because I didn’t get time to assemble them together myself…

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Here we go…

Arbor – Dunning Kruger – 4.8%

A great beer from one of the UK’s best breweries. This beer was a real hit when we there was a cask of it on at the N&P. An easy drinking pale ale, brewed with American and Australian hops. It has flavours and aromas of mango, passionfruit and lime. Yes please!

Black Isle – 5 a Day Passion Fruit IPA – 3.5%

You are greeted by an aroma of sweet and tart passion fruit with a hint of fruity hop. In the glass there’s hazy gold and a tight, white foam. The flavour is all about that lively passion fruit. Easy drinking, light bodied and crisp, finishing with a touch of sweet malt

Brewboard – Ripchord – 4.3%

A new brewery for the N&P. Just like me, they like new breweries!

A deep-gold multi-hopped session pale ale. US Cascade, Chinook and Falconer’s Flight work their magic, imparting a beautiful citrus, spicy and grapefruit flavour. Mosaic produces a seriously good tropical tang. Meanwhile, on the malt side of things, Cara Gold and Cara Ruby also do their thing with a rich caramel-sweet aroma and toffee-like flavour. Rhapsodic.

Brick – Peck – 3%

There’s nothing small about Brick’s Table Beer. Each release will pack a wallop of aroma and flavour by using hops that work together to produce low ABV but high hop character. And that’s all I can tell you, because there’s no other information about what is in this release of it!

Five Points/Northern Monk – Birthday IPA – 6.7%

There are countless things to admire about Northern Monk. Not least their accomplishment in weaving together the tradition of old with the progressive
approach of today, always illustrated so well in their bold, hoppy pales and IPAs. For this
collaboration Five Points wanted to celebrate exactly this, and together, they brewed a big, tropical IPA hopped with Mosaic and experimental Bru-1 Hops. Aromas of mango, cantaloupe and pineapple alongside a smooth, rounded mouthfeel and low bitterness.

Salopian – Slipstream – Blood Orange IPA – 5.1%

A juicy IPA with fresh blood orange resonating through hints of candied peel and sparkling orange blossom.

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Brewdog Fanzine issue 5

A new set of beers have arrived. Hopefully none of them are as bad as the English IPA from issue 4, which was very poor by BD standards, like a tribute to Greene King IPA (and why would you do that?)

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Origami Orangutan – 8.5% – Tangerine Double IPA

A big, classic American IPA brewed to double strength and packed with C hops and tangerine. The addition of tangerine carries itself through the beer with notes of pine, citrus and fresh cut grass also making an appearance.

King of Eights v2 – 7.4% – East Coast IPA

This juicy, smooth New England IPA has returned, and this time around it’s been double dry-hopped with an increase in ABV. Hopped with just Citra (but a lot of it), the hops take the spotlight and show exactly what they are capable of. After tasting it, there’s a lot of Citra but not much else in there.

Alice Porter – 6.2% – Nitro Porter

The first #ReBrewDog for Fanzine is here, and it’s pretty darn special! The enigmatic porter Alice Porter is back, brewed with the addition of vanilla and put into nitro cans exclusively for Fanzine.

Brewdog fanzine issue 4, May 2018

The next issue of fanzine is upon us. A couple of these will be sampled very soon.

Small Batch English IPA – 5.2% – IPA

An old school English IPA brewed with the addition of traditional English hops which bring lavender and bergamot to the front of the beer. Supporting the hops is a light biscuit malt flavour, followed by a dry, bitter finish with a touch of warmth.

Interstate – 4.6% – Lager

A perfectly balanced Vienna-style lager brewed with subtle spicy German hops over toasty-base malts which bring out bread crust and biscuit in the beer, followed by a bittersweet finish.

Hop Shop – 9% – IPA

This hop-forward big IPA is intense, dank and resinous, with bursts of stonefruit and citrus. Grapefruit and apricot sit on top of a building bitterness, with a honeycomb malt base followed by a dry yet bittersweet finish.

Brewdog Fanzine issue 3, May 2018

The next issue of fanzine is upon us. Might be a while before these ones get sampled as there are a couple of big beasts.

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Ten Ton Truck (Espresso Edition) – 10% – Stout / Porter

An evolution of previous Fanzine release, Nebula with the addition of espresso coffee. Fruity espresso, bitter chocolate and roastiness on the nose. Followed by a payload of bitter coffee red berry, dark chocolate and some floral notes.

Pulp Patriot – 9.5% – IPA

An amped up spin on our previous Milkshake IPA, this fruited NEIPA combines peach, mango and milk sugar with low bitterness. A juggernaut of a double IPA that delivers a payload of big fruit with mango and peach front and centre. Milk sugar builds and rounds out the full juicy notes.

Zephyr V2 (Lime Gose Edition) – 4.6% – Sour Ale

The latest twist on our Fanzine session sour, emulating a sour German wheat ale, with lime and salt. A zesty gose with a twist of lime and a pinch of salt to crank up the crisp sour character. A juicy, bright beer, with a light acidity resting on a biscuity backbone.

 

The Needle & Pin Craft Beer Club – selection box #11 – May 2018

You know the drill by now, the latest selection of 6 beers from the “normal” club, a picture and some notes. Another different backdrop for this month’s photo too 🙂 And this time it’s all about the hop.

Anderson Valley – Hop Ottin – 7%

A new brewery to me, and an interesting sounding IPA. Brilliant copper colour with a lingering, lacy white head. The nose sings of grapefruit, pine needles, citron, roses and bergamot. The flavor is rich in the citrusy, resiny flavours from Columbus and Cascade hops packed into this beer balanced artfully with a solid, honey-drenched malt character and crisp bitterness leading to a beautifully dry, light herbal finish. Apparently it bites like a cankicky bluetail (a rattlesnake looking for a fight).

Arbor – Large Hop Collider – 8%

A double India Pale Ale, brewed with Citra & Mosaic hops. Big flavours and aromas of mango, passion fruit, lychee and sweet citrus. I’m a big Arbor fan, having had many of their excellently named (and brewed!) beers in the last 12 months, including Mega Mega White Thing, Lime in the Coconut, The Devil Made Me Brew It, Smac My Brew Up, Super Yakima, Piccolina and Oz Bomb. Look forward to trying some more at this month’s meet the brewer night at The Needle & Pin.

Black Iris – Cosmic Cream – 5.0%

A familiar beer this one, sampled at February’s meet the brewer event at The Needle & Pin. Smoothly creamed fruits come through from the mix of lactose and Vic Secret, Citra, Simcoe and Rakau hops.

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Dry and Bitter – Dank and Juicy – 6.2%

Denmark’s Dry & Bitter are one of my favourite discoveries this year. As Seen on TV is a cracking session IPA, Citra Bale Ale is a lovely session ale full of Citra goodness (I could drink it for days), Simcoe Bale Ale is similar, and Fat & Fruity has soft pine and a little fruit.

Dank and Juicy is a full blown West Coast IPA with Citra, Equinox and Mosaic hops, to give loads of tropical fruit on the nose and a resinous hop backbone.

Marble – Pint – 3.9%

AKA the beer that moaning minnies grassed them up to Trading Standards over. A cracking pint, whatever the measure, a pale malt bill and a blend of NZ and US hops combine to make a 3.9% session ale with zesty aromas, grapefruit and subtle lemongrass.

Melvin – Melvin IPA – 7.5%

You can’t always get what you want, but sometimes you get lucky. It’s all about the right hops, at the right time. This is how Melvin grew up. Fruity, intense, but not bitter like the rest of them. As long as you don’t take advantage, Melvin think that this is the hoppiest relationship you could ask for. I’ll be the judge of that!

Brewdog Fanzine issue 2, May 2018

Fanzine is a completely new type of beer club, “for the fans, the dreamers, the die-hards and the geeks” apparently. Three new cans delivered every couple of weeks, and you can opt-in or out whenever you want – no annual subscription fees or long‑term commitment. Apparently we can “expect crazy fresh East & West Coast IPAs, huge Imperial Stouts, single hop pale ales, experimental lagers and fruit‑infused sours”. Brewdog will also be raiding their back catalogue of brews and bringing back some of of their biggest hits.

Here’s what’s in the first box and I’ve already made my way through them.

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Fool’s Gold – 6% – Lager

A citrus-forward lager – punchy hop bitterness and malt sweetness in perfect balance.

The gold road’s sure a long road. Winds on through the hills for fifteen days. Decent lager style.

King of Eights – 6.9% – IPA

This juicy, smooth Citra NE IPA will evolve & feature double and triple dry-hopping.

Ooh, a NEIPA, what a novelty. Murky stone fruits and low bitterness. Bjorn Again instead of Abba.

Jinx – 4.7% – Pale Ale

A light biscuity base with a hint of toasty Munich malt acts as a simple canvas for the hop expressions to shine; here, Washington hop varieties Simcoe and Centennial (two of Brewdog’s favourite hops) provide a broad palate of pithy grapefruit and pungent pine.

Intriguing nose but it delivers very little. Another Indie Pale Ale (that’s not a good thing).

The Needle & Pin Craft Beer Club – selection box #10 – March 2018

 

 

The tenth selection from the craft beer club, and I think the eighteenth overall. The last “main” box came just before Xmas, so let’s see what hoppy delights await this time. Thanks to the Needle & Pin for supplying this month’s photos, my beers were all bundled in with some other deliveries so I didn’t get chance to take the customary photo.

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Amundsen – Hop Magic – 7%

A collaboration with Dry & Bitter Brewing Company and Dugges Bryggeri. The three breweries describe this as the “ultimate crusher”, a tropical juice hop head butt with Magnum, Mosaic, Galaxy, Nelson Sauvin, Citra, Ekuanot and Simcoe all mixed in.

Shindigger – Mango Unchained Session IPA – 4.2%

A session IPA blended with mango and pineapple, described by the team as “if Rubicon made beer”.

Marble – Tuckerlovsky Session IPA – 4.7%

Named for Marble’s head of sales and his wife, this punchy session IPA is made with a blend of Northern and Southern hemisphere hops. Bright citrus and juicy tropical fruits partner with a subtle malt sweetness.

The other half of the box is below…

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Magic Rock – Brother Chucker – 6.7%

A collaboration with their mates at Basqueland Brewing Project, brewed to remind them of a fun filled week of bikes, beer, baked cheesecake, big smiles and darts in the Basque region. A smooth malt bill featuring Golden Promise, wheat and golden naked oats, alongside a defined bitterness to aid drinkability. They then used lots of lovely piney/citrus Simcoe and limey New Zealand Motueka hops as well as a dash of tropically crazy HBC 438. The beer was fermented with their house WLP001 yeast for minimal aroma/flavour interference and super easy drinking refreshment. Bullseye!

Arbor – Piccolina – 3.2%

Big flavoured low alcohol session beer, brewed with Vienna malt & oats and Mosaic and Simcoe hops. I’d love to tell you more about it, but that’s all that’s been written about it so far! (Edit : my words are hoppy, crisp, dry and bitter, which makes for a lovely session ale, an easy drinking pint that you could drink plenty of.)

North Riding – Mosaic – 4.3%

Enter the new kid on the block, Mosaic hops are full of blueberry and citrus flavours and seriously pack a powerful punch to make a juicy banger of a pale ale. (Edit: this was a lovley session pale, so much fruitiness from the hops.)

Given that two thirds of the beers in this box are session strength, I suspect they won’t last very long, as I’m rather lacking in things that aren’t double IPAs or imperial dark beasts at the minute. I think 2018 will be seeing more sessionable brews…