LOKI

So it seem’s we have another change to the schedule (what is going on this week?! Where is the Iceberg review we hear you cry! Total chaos)

50% of Muse on Booze have moved to Amsterdam (for the weekend) however so it does feel right that we’re reviewing a beer that is brewed in that wonderful city.

Anyway…

 

LOKI

BREWER: Walhalla Brewery, North Holland

STYLE: IPA

ABV: 5.5%

VESSEL: 33cl bottle

TWITTER: @walhallabrewing

MOB RATING: 70.5%

 

SAMMY SAY’S…

There’s something about the packaging on Loki that’s very impressive but at the same time it feels a little amateurish.  And amateurish is not necessarily a bad thing; it’s just in this case it doesn’t quite come together.  It leads to Loki not being a beer that would draw your attention straight away.  But we all know it’s the liquid itself that counts.

 Once poured you are faced with a darker beer than you might have expected from the outset and the nose is one filled with choclatey notes backed by coffee.  It really works with Loki and coupled with its dark look we could be in for a treat here…

 …For a dark beer it is very light both on the palate and on the back of the throat. This leads to a pleasant drinking experience.  What slightly lets down Loki is its lack of depth.  The flavour flashes over the taste buds and is soon disappearing over the tang horizon without leaving a lasting memory of what has gone before.  

 All in all Loki is a decent beer.   But it’s not a great beer.

Sammy’s Rating: 65%

 

JYMI SAY’S…

Funny ol’ brew this.. both in sight, sniff and see… not sure that even makes sense.

Anyway, as I approached LOKI I thought”love this dude looking back at me with his massive square head”. But when I arrived at the bottle, pre pour, Jymi was disappointed…a gloss finish to the label wrecked it…like, really wrecked it.

So I got my pro sip Hat on and tried to work out what was happening with the inside of LOKI….

Poured mega dark and with a Tipp-ex head and looked amazing I have to say! Looked like a proper ol’ ale.  Nose and initial sip were a hit.. But then it switched to a biscuit texture AS WELL as turning super silky when slipping down the ol’ throat. Cannot say I expected that.

Loki is a decent ale but is lacking a certain identity I have to say. It’s absolute winning angle is how smooth it is but other than that it does fall into the average bracket.

Good, but not great.

Jymi’s Rating: 76%

 

 

MUSE ON BOOZE RATING: 70.5% 

 

MOB review next weekend: ICEBERG by TITANIC BREWERY…

and we mean it this time! 

 

ICEBERG PREVIEW

THE KING OF SOHO IS COMING… YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TWICE NOW :/ 

#MOBSOG

@MUSEONBOOZE 

ROKU

An unexpected change of plan means The King of Soho is OUT for this week and Mr. Roku is IN! King of Soho up next (probably (honestly, this heat mixed with Gin and a dramatic penalty shootout is enough to melt the mind)). 

 

ROKU

STYLE: Contemporary 

ABV: 47%

KEY BOTANICAL: Yuzu

THEY SAY SERVE WITH: Fever-Tree Tonic and Sliced Ginger Garnish

MOB SAY SERVE WITH: Merchant’s Heart Pink Peppercorn Tonic and Sliced Ginger Garnish

 

MOB COCKTAIL SUGGESTION: Ramos Gin Fizz 

Ramos Gin Fizz ingredients and method:

50ml Roku

12.5ml lemon juice

12.5ml lime juice

20ml sugar syrup

4 dashes Orange Flower Water

3 drops Vanilla Extract

1 Egg White

25ml Single Cream

Soda Water

Shake first 8 ingredients in a cocktail shaker with pleanty of ice. Empty ice then dry shake for 10 seconds. Strain into a chilled highball glass without ice. Top with Soda.

LIGHTHOUSE

BREWER: Adnams, Suffolk

STYLE: Golden Ale 

ABV: 3.4%

VESSEL: 500ml bottle 

TWITTER: @Adnams

MOB RATING: 69.5%

 

SAMMY SAY’S…

Adnams Lighthouse sits in the busy golden ale section of the beer world, where there is a wide range of offerings, catering to different palates, for consumers to choose from.  Lighthouse is on the lighter side and has definitely carved its niche.

It has a pleasant nose that is filled with malt notes and a subtle hop background.  Despite this, it is still light and nowhere near as heavy as some other golden beers.  This is followed by a reassuringly strong taste for a light beer.  The maltiness is not too heavy and there is depth in the flavour, which has a good aftertaste that is not too bitter.  In fact, Lighthouse is a surprisingly refreshing beer for a golden ale and would be readily enjoyed at any time of the year.

The gaping hole in Lighthouse’s armor is it’s packaging.  Adnams could do with shaping this beer up and pushing it out there because with a major facelift this beer is a contender in the golden ale market.  We all know that beer is about its taste but with a little bit of TLC from the creative team at Adnams this could have a much wider appeal.

Next time you see one of these in your local bottle shop, don’t ignore it.  It’s well worth taking a couple home to keep you and your friends company for an evening. 

Sammy’s Rating: 67%

 

JYMI SAY’S…

Fundamentally, I’m a bit of a wimp, so saying what I’m about to say makes no real sense as it’s never going to happen, but I’m going with it anyway…..

There you are, alone on a boat that is storm damaged and on the verge of being swallowed by the ocean, along with you. The storm you have just about managed to survive so far rages on and your hopes of getting out of this rather sticky spot are dwindling. The last person you spoke to was Captain Claus of the Liner Tappendooble, but that was on the radio days ago and the aerial was now well and truly kaput….

But then, what could that be in the distance?? Surely not??!! Is it?? Yes it is!!! IT’S A RUDDY FLIPPIN LIGHTHOUSE!! Now who would have thunk it..

As you pull closer it begins to dawn on you that the Lighthouse looks absolutely ridiculous. Was this a joke? Was this some sort of clown Lighthouse hallucination? You genuinely consider turning back into the storm to get away from this towering monstrosity but think better of it as your intrigue takes control.

Honestly, what is this packaging all about?? It’s absurd!

Time to move on to the inside of this silly bottle..

Ok, at just 3.4% I wasn’t expecting a huge amount of flavour from Lighthouse. Though it is lacking a bit of body which is understandable, it tastes great I have to say. Very, very crisp refreshing taste up front , then it dips out for a second, but comes back with bitter tones that linger on the palate nicely and stick around for a while. Once that pleasant ride is over there is only one thing for it, take another huge gulp! And so on and so on. And you know what, I think it’s a good thing Lighthouse is so weak because it really does keep you coming back for more.

Any stronger and you would be involved in your own personal storm very quickly and searching for a proverbial lighthouse to save you.

Sort the disaster packaging out Adnams and you’re on to a winner here.

Jymi’s Rating: 72%

 

 

MUSE ON BOOZE RATING: 69.5% 

 

MOB review next weekend: ICEBERG by TITANIC BREWERY

ICEBERG PREVIEW

THE KING OF SOHO IS COMING… YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED 

#MOBSOG

@MUSEONBOOZE 

GIN MARE

STYLE: New Western

ABV: 42.7%

KEY BOTANICAL: Rosemary

THEY SAY SERVE WITH: 1724 Tonic and Rosemary Sprig Garnish

MOB SAY SERVE WITH: Fever-Tree Light Tonic and Rosemary & Pomegranate seeds Garnish 

 

MOB COCKTAIL SUGGESTION: Gimlet

Gimlet ingredients and method:

50ml Gin Mare

25ml Lime Juice

12.5ml Lavender Infused Sugar Syrup (preferably homemade)

Dash of Soda

Lavender Sprig for Garnish

Lime Wheel for Garnish

Add the Gin, Lime Juice and Sugar Syrup to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake lightly for 15 seconds. Double strain into a chilled Martini glass. Add a dash of Soda and garnish with a sprig of Lavender and a wheel of Lime.

SIERRA NEVADA PALE ALE

BREWER: Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

STYLE: Pale Ale

ABV: 5.6%

VESSEL: 355ml bottle

TWITTER: @SierraNevada

MOB RATING: 73%

 

JYMI SAY’S…

Look, these dudes may have invented Craft Beer but that doesn’t mean ol’ Jymi is gonna be all soppy and give them an easy ride, oh no no no….

Ok, first off, I don’t mind admitting that I have avoided this ale for years. Reason being, I hate the label. Simple as that. I know that is ridiculous, but without knowing it I have had it in my head that I won’t like the beer, because of the label.

So here I have it in front of me ready for review and on closer inspection of the packaging it’s not that bad, but I’m still not a fan. As rubbish as it is I quite like the very rural North American scene.

The nose on SNPA is pretty sweet, very aley and pleasant enough, but nothing to write home about. It certainly didn’t draw me in to drink it. And I must say it tastes very much like it smells. Sweet at first and then very aley. But then the bitter aftertaste comes and that helps everything along nicely. What I like about this beer is that it has bags of old skool taste to it but you get the murmurings of what was then the future (the future is now by the way, I hope you’re not confused! I AM confused incidentally) in the background of the taste. The whole thing could do with a touch more body too for me. Because of the sweetness I’m not too sure I could do that many of these but the texture as a whole, even though it’s pretty fizzy, does lend itself to whiling away an arvo and evening in, well any pub around the world nowadays really.

This Pale Ale isn’t exceptional but is tasty enough and the fact that the beer paved the way for something quite huge in the drinks world means that you really do have to take a large proverbial hat off to the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

And that I do x

Jymi’s Rating: 63%

 

SAMMY SAY’S…

Let’s not beat around the bush – Sierra Nevada is a trendsetter.  It’s one of the granddaddies of craft ales.  Very often, masters can become overtaken by their apprentices.  And Sierra Nevada has many apprentices out there in the big ale world.  So how does this stalwart hold-up in modern world?

The packaging will be crowd divider.  I, for one, love it.  But not everyone will.  And that’s ok.  But there is no denying that it could only be Sierra Nevada.  That means this distinctive brand still stands out.  There’s no confusing it with other, newer, kids on the block.

Once unleashed and set free in the glass, the familiar sweet aroma of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is like putting on a pair of your favourite undies.  It immediately comforts you and makes you feel right at home.  And that sweet scent draws you in.  Then there’s the drinking.  Yes – it still is packing a punch.  Memories of good times spent with friends come flooding back through the fruity notes.   Hiding behind the undeniable hops, Sierra Nevada packs a punch that can sneak up on one very quickly.  Make no mistake, this is one incredibly well-balanced beer.

This old boy still stands tall.  There may be others that have come (and some gone) that contend with,  and even surpass, this old brew.  But Sierra Nevada was here first.  It knows its place.  And it’s nestled right near the top of the pile. 

 Sammy’s Rating: 83%

 

 

MUSE ON BOOZE RATING: 73%

 

MOB review next weekend: LIGHTHOUSE by ADNAMS

LIGHTHOUSE PREVIEW

Word coming out of the MOB Gin House is the next one up is GIN MARE… suppose we’ll see in the week now won’t we.

#MOBSOG

@MUSEONBOOZE 

 

 

 

FIFTY POUNDS

STYLE: London Dry

ABV: 43.5%

KEY BOTANICAL: Citrus

THEY SAY SERVE WITH: Fever-Tree Tonic and Lemon Garnish 

MOB SAY SERVE WITH: Fentimans Pink Grapefruit Tonic and Rosemary & Orange Wedge Garnish 

 

MOB COCKTAIL SUGGESTION: White Lady

White Lady ingredients and method:

50ml Fifty Pounds Gin

25ml Triple Sec

25ml Lemon Juice

12.5ml Sugar Syrup

1 Egg White (optional but adds huge amount of depth)

Shake all ingredients with Ice and Strain back into the same shaker to remove the ice. Shake again without ice (dry shake) and then strain into a chilled Martini glass. Garnish with a twist of lemon.

 

FURSTY FERRET

BREWER: Badger Brewery (Hall & Woodhouse), Dorset

STYLE: Bitter

ABV: 4.4%

VESSEL: 500ml bottle 

TWITTER: Not currently on Twitter

MOB RATING: 61.5%

 

SAMMY SAY’S…

Ferret: a domesticated form of the European polecat.

Ferret: a mammal belonging to the same genus as the weasel.

Ferret: a tricky little fella with a reputation for being sly.

Ferret: apparently actually a very good pet.

Thirsty Ferret: a thirsty version of all the above.

Fursty Ferret: an ale from Badger Brewery.

To clarify, Fursty Ferret should not be confused with a thirsty ferret or indeed any form of the ferret.

What we do have with the Badger version of Ferret (let’s avoid confusion with the animal overload on names), is a well packaged up beer.  The clear bottle works well and it is most definitely a good platform on which to paste the effect label (featuring the aforementioned ferrets).

The beer, unfortunately, does not live up to the feisty reputation of its namesake and is distinctively average.  The biscuity taste is finished with a very subtle hoppy ending but to be completely upfront about it, you’d be hard pushed to single it out. 

Fursty Ferret: Packing a punch with the name.  Very limp, slightly grazing punch packed with the flavour. 

Sammy’s Rating: 61%

 

JYMI SAY’S…

I just don’t know what it is with this Badger lot but the phrase don’t do things by halves springs to mind because they seem to have done the opposite and actually done EVERYTHING BY HALF. Literally everything (though they did manage to fill the bottle up to the top, which was good).

Honestly, everything from the packaging to the taste just reeks of, meh, yeah it’s aright I suppose. Average. Not bad. Not offensive but by no means great.

For me the only shining light here is the name. Fursty Ferret is a great name, it really is. It’s the type of name that reminds me of maybe being on holiday in the West Country, walking, and stumbling across a random country pub. Some bright spark in your walking crew (probably you!) throws out a speculative ”shall we stop for a quick pint” suggestion. Of course everyone thinks this is a splendid idea so you find yourself settled in the Wheatsheaf and Wood Pigeon drinking something called, Fursty Ferret.. of course you do. And you wouldn’t be disappointed. But you wouldn’t be blown away either. (see… AVERAGE!)

FF is a perfectly fine ale and pleasant enough to drink but it is lacking in body I must say. When it comes to the length, this is where this beer falls down. Once your initial pleasant and malty taste has gone nothing else really happens.

Fursty Ferret falls into the bracket of an everyday drinking ale. It’s not at all bad, but to call it good would be wrong.

Why? Because as I’ve already mentioned A LOT, it’s average.

Case closed.

Jymi’s Rating: 62%

 

 

 

MUSE ON BOOZE RATING: 61.5% 

MOB review next weekend: SIERRA NEVADA PALE ALE by SIERRA NEVADA BREWING CO.

 

SNPA PREVIEW

 We would love to let you know what Gin is coming up midweek but we don’t know ourselves.. suppose that’s the beauty of sunshine and Gin ai?

:/

#MOBSOG

@MUSEONBOOZE