Hello there you fuzzy bundles of sexyfullness! It’s been a busy few months for the young London craft brewery, Beavertown. Aside from all the dam building they’ve managed an expansion with loadsa new kit, a rebranding thanks to artistic director Nick Dwyer, and wonderful new cans for their core range. To celebrate their increased presence in beer land I paid a visit to my favourite ale emporium and returned with these beauties. And a very large grin.
Gamma Ray APA, 5.4% abv. It’d been a while since I last had this, happily it was every bit as great as I remember. Resinous up front with plenty of tangerine and mango from the hops, subdued caramel covered biscuit malts, and more evergreen at the finish. Then there’s the +100 Awesome Points they get for that can design.
Neck Oil session IPA, 4.3% abv. My first one of these. There’s lemon and lime zest, dry pine needles, papaya, biscuit and grass salad, a moderately bitter and dry finish. This stuff is so full of American hop goodness you completely forget about the low booze level. A fine daytime drinker.
Black Betty black IPA, 7.4% abv. This was one of the first black IPA’s I tried and my return to it is long overdue. Grapefruit and tangerine lead into roasty cocoa, coffee, and liquorice. The hop / malt balance spot on and makes for a wonderfully complex brew. Delicious.
8 Ball rye IPA, 6.2% abv. One of Beavertown’s early recipes and the first beer they ever sold gets its name from the pool balls they used to hold down the hop sack during dry hopping. It opens with a moderate resinous quality before citrus, tropical fruits, mild spice, and evergreen do their thing. A real nice, easy drinkin’ American style IPA.
Smog Rocket smoked porter, 5.4% abv. Another new one to me and I really dunno how I’ve missed this ‘til now. A mildly smoky start and finish, roasty coffee and chocolate malts in between. Medium body and carbonation. This thing has a great balance, the smoke working with the other flavours in the malts rather than dominating. But while I enjoyed it, it was just a little too restrained to really make an impression.
So there it is, Beavertown’s core range. I’ll certainly be picking up Gamma Ray, Neck Oil, and Black Betty with far more frequency from now on, with Neck Oil in particular standing out for it’s packed in hoppiness that puts a good few full strength IPA’s to shame. Smog Rocket on the other hand is something I probably won’t revisit for a while, I’m not saying it’s a bad beer or anything, it just didn’t work for me as well as the others did. But overall, a fine selection. And can I just mention how fudging awesome it is that those fantastic can designs match the colour of the beer inside so well! That’s next level stuff right there. Cheers!