It seems we can't have a week without listing a new brewery to the shelves at Beer Ritz these days..! Not that I'm complaining mind! Heck no. It's an incredible thing, and considering 95% of the new breweries we do stock are British, it's much more of an excuse to look on the good side of things.
Last week saw the arrival of the Beavertown range. Five different gorgeous looking bottles to get stuck into... Here goes!
Gamma Ray - 5.4% American Pale Ale
Aroma: Mango, peaches and lychees, a regular fruit cocktail. Some strawberry and raspberry yogurt too!
Taste: The initial flavour seems slightly burnt on the first sip, and I'm wondering if it may be faulted..? After a few big gulps this dies away though to a huge orange and peach juiciness. This is followed by a big, but not overpowering hop bitterness. Other flavours including pine and lemon which linger in the refreshing finish. Looking over my notes I wrote "It's one Hell of an IPA!" - I didn't even see on the label it was a Pale Ale before drinking it...
Smog Rocket - 5.4% Smoked Porter
Aroma: Smoked Beechwood chips are the name of the game here. There's also some burnt toast and charcoal and a hint of underlying chocolate malts.
Taste: The smoke is actually quite subtle and balanced in this brew. It's packed full with tonnes of malt flavours. Caramel, toffee and dark chocolate. Burnt cereals and a lot of woody notes giving a slight souring effect. A super smooth body and finish - Delicious!
Bloody 'Ell - 7.4% Blood Orange IPA
Aroma: Surprisingly enough, the aroma is chock full of orange! There's is also a strange gin and vodka essence on top of some caramel and pine and maybe a tiny amount of aniseed?
Taste: To make a comparison with Gamma Ray, this is a much more earthy style beer. It still has plenty of hoppy juicy qualities mind, lots of bitter grapefruit and the big orange too. Some interesting herbal notes balanced with sweet earthy caramel malts. Something a little different and well worth a try.
8 Ball - 6.2% Rye IPA
Aroma: Peaches, rye malts with a touch of chocolate malt too. Lot's of raw drying cerials here.
Taste: Loads of malt, straight away and in your face. The rye malts are very evident, am I also getting some cara red or Munich malts too? It's clearly not an IPA about the hops, and you know, it's refreshing to see! The hops are still there though, a gentle bitterness in the finish reminds you that they don't skimp on the hops even for this style of beer which could easily be carried by the amount of malt here.
Black Betty - 7.4% Black IPA
Aroma: The beer has a classic BIPA aroma (if you can have one...) which reminds me of the Kernel BIPAs of last year. It's more floral with citrus fruits, rather than roasted and chocolate like.
Taste: The body is light and very fruity. Sweet to begin with (caramels) which then moves through to fruity but drying body and long lasting bitter finish. I've been really impressed with the recent offering of BIPAs at the moment, like the Salopian Vertigo I just posted about previously, this BB is an absolute stunner, and certainly my pick of the whole range.
I think what I like most about this range of beers is the flavour consistency. You can really tell that they're made the same way across the board, and the same amount of effort that goes into every beer really shows. I must make special mention of the artwork on each bottle as well. The attention to detail in the Beavertown labels is stunning, and they look absolutely great!
Wouldn't you agree...?