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April 2013: a round-up…

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May 14, 2013 by 250 Beers

34 unique beers were added to my beer list in the month of April 2013 – 34 beers that, before May began, had never passed my lips. This figure is down 10 on last month as my shit chart depicts:

beertrendapr13

click for larger view

Hmm, I think I’ll go in alphabetical order this month…

Baird Teikoku IPABaird Brewing from Japan made my unique beer list for the first time in April. I had the Teikoku IPA (6.0%). I’ve heard people rave about Baird for a long time. It was the raving that incited this purchase and I wasn’t disappointed. This is a very smooth IPA. I can’t wait to try other Baird beers in the not too distant future.

Bridge Road Brewers made the list on three new occasions with their Galaxy Single Hop IPA (5.2%), Harvest Fresh Hop Ale (4.4%) Bridge Road Harvest Fresh Hop Aleand the Robust Porter (5.2%). They’re all fantastic beers but the stand-out for me is the Harvest. It’s very tasty, hoppy, zesty, fresh, thirst quenching, sessionable…need I go on?

A shopping trip to Craft Wine Store in Red Hill saw me grab a few newbies in April. Amongst others, two of the beers purchased that day Celt Experience Dark Agewere from the Welsh brewing outfit, The Celt Experience. They were Bleddyn 1075 (5.6%) an English strong ale and Dark Age (4.0%) a mild ale. Both were good beers but I much preferred the mild.

A beer from my homeland next in the form of Courage Directors Ale (4.8%). I quite enjoyed it. It certainly does have a very English feel to it. I’d drink it again for sure.

Feral Brewing next who recently had Hop Hog named as the Critic’s Choice number one beer for the second year running. And why not. It’s an outstanding IPA! My unique beer list is now proud to feature Raging Feral Raging FlemFlem (7.6%) from Feral’s ‘Brewpub Series’ which is a very creative mix of Belgium meets IPA (I loved it) and Golden Ace (5.6%) a verrrry drinkable Golden Ale.

A Hofbrau Oktoberfest (6.3%) had been in my beer fridge for such a long time that I couldn’t recall where I’d bought it. It was this minor memory lapse that prompted me to open the bottle. It was nothing special. The beer tasted very German which isn’t a bad thing but it was just bland.

I keep a very strictly controlled listing of the beers that I drink and I had Leffe Radieuseto check it twice to make sure I hadn’t stuffed up with a Leffe. I was certain that I’d had a Leffe Blonde (6.6%) before but, according to my list, I hadn’t. Perhaps I’d had one or two way before I started keeping count? Anyway, it’s a bloody good Belgian Blonde. I also tucked into a Leffe Radieuse (8.2%) in April. Radieuse translates as ‘radiant’ and I can’t disagree with that. It’s a lovely beer which left me beaming.

Little Creatures Single Batches….we hadn’t seen one released for ages and then BOOM! Shepherd’s Delight (6.4%) appears Little Creatures Shepherd's Delightand delight me it did. I had quite a few bottles of this and a stack off tap too. It’s a great IPA and there are lots of bottles of this beer around still. Grab some before I get ’em.

Lots of ‘M’s’ to get through now…

Matso’s Mango Beer (4.5%). Here’s one of those beers that I’ve walked past for years without ever giving it a chance. Well, I gave it a chance and I didn’t mind it at all. I’d been messing around outside with the kids beforehand and it went down a treat. It was quite sweet and I couldn’t drink lots of it but it was a decent combo of beer and fruit – something that Mrs 250 Beers has started to show an interest in (but only because I make her try the fruity ones).

McLaren Vale’s VALE/EXP/003 (5.0%) is the third of their experimental releases. This one is a rhubarb wheat beer which worked well. No chance of any interference from the wife with this beer as my two pints were part of a cheeky midweek lunchtime venture to the Pig ‘n’ Whistle (Riverside).

I’d accumulated half a dozen different Mikkeller Single Hop IPA’s over the past few months. The last of which to disappear down my throat was the Galena (6.8%) variety. It was pretty damn good and everything that I expected it to be having had five other awesome varieties previously. I’ll save my further comments for a ‘Mikkeller special’ one day once I’ve tried them all!

Moon Dog Love TapMy list now contains representation from Victorian brewery, Moon Dog. I managed three of their funky named beers last month; Dasher’s Envy Fancy Christmas Ale (8.1%), Henry Ford’s Girthsome Fjord (8.1%) and Love Tap (7.1%). All three were amazing beers and I’m hooked. I’ll definitely be on the look-out for more Moon Dog beers.

The next six beers are all from the MT Brewery; Black Cockatoo (4.3%), Cuvee Belgian Blonde (5.2%), Moderation (2.8%), Rainforest (4.3%), Settlers (4.8%) and St Bridget (7.2%). You can read all about them by clicking here.

Old Time Premium Lager (4.6%) gained notoriety at 250 Beers HQOrval Trappist in April. For all the wrong reasons.

My soft spot for a decent Trappist Ale was sweetened by the arrival of Orval (6.2%) into my beer fridge. This is a great beer. If you’ve never had a Trappist beer, this is a fine place to start.

Two beers from the Rogue Brewery in the US were bought at Grand Central Cellars last month who, I have to say, have expanded their range of craft beer stock. Rogue has been on my hit list Rogue Yellow Snow IPAfor a while now so to see them so close by to my place of work was too enticing for me to ignore. I grabbed a Brutal IPA (6.0%) and a Yellow Snow IPA (6.2%). Both of which seemed to have made the journey through customs fine. They are great American IPA’s.

Schofferhofer Kristallweizen (5.0%) is next. A fairly standard German wheat beer which is neither shite or excellent but worth a try if you see it and have never bothered. It was another beer that I thought I’d had before but my reliable ‘bible’ suggested otherwise.

From Canada was my first ever St Ambroise in the form of their St Ambroise Pale AlePale Ale (5.0%). They got a lot things right with this one. I should have bought a 6pack.

At the other end of the scale was a Tennent’s Original Export Lager (5.0%) from Scotland. They got a lot of things wrong. It was the type of swill that I guzzled ‘back in the day’. I bought it for old times sake but it really is shit – mass-produced rubbish.

Some visitors to my blog will be aware that I’ve been in Australia for just over five years now. In all of those years I’ve never consumed a Tooheys Tooheys OldOld (4.4%). That was until last month when I succumbed. Twice. I’d always been put off by the word ‘Tooheys’ but I’ve got to say that I was pleasantly surprised – hence me having another a week or so later. I listen to older folk (not elderly people – just people older than me) talk about craft beer in a negative way. These are the types of people who are very loyal to existing brands like XXXX and Tooheys. If only they knew that Tooheys Old really isn’t too far away in terms of likeness from some dark craft beers that are around.

Last on the list is Hop Cat (4.7%). This is a collaborative brew from Tuatara (NZ) and Beer Here from Denmark using a new hop variety from NZ called Waimea. It’s a really good American pale ale. If you see it, get some!

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