Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World is one of those books that, if you've not already read it, you really should – it’s like Black Mirror in book form, only written in 1931. If you haven't, you may well be confused by the descriptors that come with Newstead’s latest kettle sour: conformity and hypnopedia and synthesis aren’t exactly common in the beer world. But the psychedelic artwork hints at the meaning: soma is the name of a drug that can cure any kind of unhappiness, bringing euphoria and bliss to distract an oppressed populace.
The message would seem to be: when you’re in need of some distraction, get your hands on some Brave New World. Newstead soured a pale malt base with lactobacillus from natural yoghurt, then stuffed it with strawberries, pineapple, watermelon and passionfruit. There’s a total of 130kg of fruit there to protect your mind from the pain of reality, and it does exactly that. First you get hit with melon, reminding you of eating juicy wedges of watermelon in the summertime. Then the passionfruit kicks in, with the tang, the slight pucker, and the memory of picking fruit from the vines growing rampant on the back fence. Before you realise it, all four fruits are showing their flavours, and they match with the slight sour and the fizzy body to bring Fruit Tingles to mind.
It’s easy to forget the hops are slaving away in the background, carrying the fruitiness. It’s easy to forget there’s alcohol in this quaffer too, which goes down so easily. It’s easy to forget there was a time when Brave New World was not, and that it’s a limited release that one day will cease to be.
Read the book. Drink the beer. Escape reality.
- Fruit Sour
- 10 IBU