Tasting the BrewDog & Stone Bashah

September 23, 2010

The Bashah is a collaboration brew between two of the worlds most influential breweries, the Stone Brewing Co. in California, and BrewDog from Scotland. It barely even matters what the beer in the bottle is, if you put these two names on it I’ll buy it out of sheer faith in its quality and predictably fantastic flavor. Each of these breweries have embarked on an incredible beer journey on their own, each creating unique and no-holds-barred beers in their own style. Put them together then, and what do you get? A Black Belgian Style Double India Pale Ale.

Firstly, this is a Double IPA, so it should be robustly hoppy with fresh, earthy and citrus bitter flavors that pack a decent punch. It should be both higher in alcohol and in bitterness (IBUs). Next, it is a Belgian Style Double IPA. This could mean a few things, but most typically it means that it was fermented with a Belgian yeast strain rather then an Californian one, thus giving it bigger body, a fruiter, more malty character, and a more lively carbonation. And Finally, it is black. This indicates the color, and therefore usage of dark, chocolate, or roasted malts in the brew; those flavors should come through subtly in the beer finally creating a unique and exciting beer. Read the rest of this entry »

BrewDog Unveils AB: 03

September 17, 2010

BrewDog’s third installation in the Abstrakt series, AB: 03, just went live this morning. AB:01 was a Vanilla bean infused Belgian Quadrupel at 10.2%, AB:02 was a Tripple Dry Hopped Imperial Red Ale at 18%, now AB:03 is an Imperial Ale Aged for more than 2 years in Whisky casks with raspberries and strawberries at 10.5%. Just 3192, 375ml bottles of AB: 03 were made and are selling for 9.99 British pounds.

I did expect that AB:02 and 03 would sell out immediately, as AB:01 did, however they re still selling AB:02 on their website. Interesting. It may be a case of over flooding the market with similar products; what with Tactical Nuclear Penguin, Sink the Bismark, and The End of History, BrewDog has in the past year brought an onslaught of high alcohol, high cost, exclusive beers to the market. Maybe it is time that they focus on their core business. But I will never discourage their enthusiasm and sense of experimentation. Cheers!

BrewDog Unleashes the Devine Rebel Mortlach Reserve 2008

August 31, 2010

A couple weeks ago I enjoyed and reviewed the Devine Rebel; a BrewDog and Mikkeller collaboration Barleywine. This was a big, rich, and malty barleywine that really brought the house down for me. In 2008 when these two breweries created this masterpiece, unknowing to us they packed a bunch of it away in Mortlach Speyside Whisky Barrels for almost 2 years – and now they are bottling and selling them!

I love this kind of creativity and enthusiasm for experimentation. Brew it, and have fun with some of it. It’s a “lets just see what happens” kind of mentality. And why not!? Only 1000 bottles of this limited edition 12.5& Whisky Barrel Aged Barleywine will be sold, 500 of which are available online for about $18% Canadian equivalent. Not to bad considering the beer’s age and maturation place.

Tasting the Mikkeller, BrewDog Devine Rebel

August 19, 2010

The Scottish Brewery BrewDog has been making a name for themselves as brewers of both unique and extreme craft beers. These guys are constantly challenging the status quo to develop new and exciting beers.  Mikkeller on the other hand is a Danish Brewery that has taken a much quieter approach to promoting their beers (practically no promotion at all) and their beers are among the most widely sought after in the world. So what do you get when you combine these two powerhouses?.. The Devine Rebel.

The Devine Rebel is a collaboration project brewed at BrewDog as a Barleywine. 1/4 of it is aged in oak Speyside whisky barrels then conditioned in a steel tank. It has been fermented with both an ale yeast and a champagne yeast. Only one hop variety has been used. It is 12.1 %abv. What we have here is a heavyweight. It comes in a rather unassuming 355ml bottle – but shows its true colors the second you unleash this beast into a glass. This bottle was batch #243, and was capped on July the 5th, 2009 – it was tasted on August the 13th, 2010. Read the rest of this entry »

The End of History Sells Out in Under a Day

July 27, 2010

The most recent (and last to be produced) ultra-extreme, high alcohol beer created by BrewDog, The End of History, sold out in under a day when it was released last week. Only 12 bottles were produced and stuffed into a squirrel and sold for $800 CDN. Of the 12 bottles produced, 7 ended up in stoats, 4 in squirrels and 1 in a rabbit.

Without a question it is among the most extreme examples of a beer that has ever been produced, and while BrewDog has taken a lot of flak from beer aficionados and press all around the world the Brewery commends themselves stating that they are trying to challenge the status quo and bring attention to the world of real beer. They certainly have brought a good deal of attention, however some people are concerned that this may be the wrong type of attention.

In either case this is the last of the crazy beers that BrewDog will be making, or so they say. So we will soon see what they have learned from their experiments and hopefully some amazingly delicious beers will come from all of this.

BrewDog is Killin’ it!

July 2, 2010

BrewDog, only three years old, has just announced that their first quarter sales are up 250% for 2010 while the industry’s sales are down 5.1% for the same period.  Right now BreDog produces over 400,000 bottles of beer for sales in over 17 countries every month! Thats over 16 thousand hectolitlres of beer per year. This puts BrewDog just under the United States definition of a Microbrewery (max production of 18 thousand hl/yr).

BrewDog has come into a marketplace that loves beer, but has been bored by the same old styles. The Americans have been innovating beers from all across the globe, and BrewDog has taken a similar, if not more drastic approach. They will pretty much do anything if they think it will be cool.

For a full recap of the press release see BrewDog’s Blog entry. Well done guys!

The BrewDog Paradox Smokehead with a CAO Brazilia

July 2, 2010

This is the case where a big, dark, deep, and overpoweringly rich beer finally meets its match with the equivalent cigar. Or if you are a cigar aficionado, here is a beer that can finally stand up with the CAO Brazilia. I’m talking about the Paradox Smokehead by BrewDog. This is really an instance of Goliath and Goliath. Each of these products stand out as some of the richest in their respective field; this is why I thought it would be best to enjoy them together.

Pairing a beer with a cigar is not always easy. Most of the time I will look to a spirit to do the job for me; the natural strength and huge aromatic properties of a fine whiskey or Cognac seem to match a cigar’s strength and aromatics so naturally. But, there are beers with these same strengths. Beers which cannot be tied down by commercial classification. These beers stand proud and bellow their flavor from the mountain tops. Let me tell you what this BrewDog stout is yelling, and why it was the perfect match for the Brazilia. Read the rest of this entry »