Warm weather has brought with it a refreshing change to the Flat Rock Brew Cafe as they roll out an array of appropriately quenching beers.
First up is a rather lovely update of a Pilsner that had been brewed at the cafe once before. With a malt-dominant profile offering up bready and biscuity notes and generous hop character from classic German (Hallertauer Mittelfrüh) and Czech (Saaz) hop varieties, this is a balanced but interesting local pils. Due to a few hiccups in the transfer, it’s not crystal clear but, cosmetics aside, it’s not done the beer any harm. If it sounds like your sort of thing, chase it down quickly because shortly after it was made the computer belonging to the brewer crashed and the recipe was lost, making it an unintended one-off.
At 4.8 percent ABV, the pilsner is a full percentage point lower than the equally quaffable Belgian Blonde. This has been brewed as an unashamedly easy-drinking beer, with just a gentle hop character and not as much sweetness as you might expect from similar Belgian brews. It’s not the kind of beer that will make a beer geek giddy in the loins, but it goes down very nicely and you’d happily drink a couple of them before moving onto, say, Flynn’s IPA.
This beer was originally brewed in honour of the birth of head brewer Vince de Soyres’ first child. Following his first birthday, Flynn’s IPA has been brought out in celebration again but, as is the case with growing up, things are quite different to a year ago. The most significant change is that the 2014 version used an English yeast whereas this year it has a French one. That yeast is one you'd usually find in a biere de garde but, atypical to that style, this beer has also been dosed up with a trio of hops: Australian Ella, German Hallertau Blanc and French Triskel. With a bready malt character and a good hop kick but easy bitterness, this isn’t your typical IPA. An IPA de garde, perhaps? Whatever it is, it’s got an unusual appeal and is good reward for getting through that first year.
Flat Rock Brew Cafe