A beer swap is a great thing to try, especially if you can get beers one can't and said someone has beers you would like to try. It seldom works out that way, but building bridges and getting connected will always have its future benefits.
After a short twitter exchange with Brian from the famous Huddersfield Grove, we decided that as we were going to be meeting up for the Ilkley Brewery night, we could do a little beer swap. I asked about strange things that the Grove had at the moment, and Bri asked if we still had any Durham Wedding ale left. We ended up: me wanting 2 Gadds beers and Bri wanting a wedding ale and a surprise. So this is what I brought along for my end of the deal:
Brian, being the true gent he is, upheld his side of the conversation and brought along my two:
Gadd's barrel aged barley wine is a 9% stormer. It comes across the nose with big hints of oak and dark honeycomb. Wow there's loads going on in there. You get an initial sweet and sour effect on the tongue which leads to a drying woody finish. Toffee, caramel, raisins, and a touch of treacle... it's quite dark for a barley wine too, probably a product of the barrel aging. Really earthy and full of complex flavour and character, one to sip and savour.
Ancestors is a whisky cask aged 9% porter. (pretty strong for a porter, but not massively unusual) A big carbonation to this beer even at this stage. (I should mention these beers are a couple of years old - in perfect condition then I guess!) I'm not sure what whisky cask this came from but it has a sort of salty sea air aroma to it, like you may get from an Jura or Oban or Old Pulteney cask. The smell couldn't be further from the aroma though! On the first sip I get massive Islay Whisky waves. It wouldn't surprise me if this had been aged in an Ardbeg or Lagavulin cask. So smokey, so peaty, this is a proper whisky beer! Fantastic, it really is!
That's my little tale about beer swapping. Not a new thing to me, and it certainly won't become an old thing. See if you can't get yourself out there and swap some beers!