There's a bit of a problem with one of Holgate's new winter releases. If you do as the name intends, you won't get to enjoy it in its full glory. Sure, Campfire Red IPA is the sort of beer you'll want to enjoy by a campfire. But, should you do so, you'll miss out on the nerdy joy of pouring it into a glass, holding it to a light, and admiring its appearance† – bright as you like and with the glow of a pre-dawn ember. What you will still get to enjoy is the coming together of citrus rind and red berry hops with nutty, candy caramel, and toffee brittle malts and a deep, resinous, long-lasting and drying bitterness.
Following Campfire from the brewery is this year's Double Stout, which welcomes you with aromas akin to lifting a freshly baked chocolate cake from the oven. The 8.5 percenter gets punchier on the palate, however: roasty espresso is shot through its guts, with bitter dark chocolate wrapped all round it. If you’ve raised yourself on double stouts of the GABS / pastry ilk, this isn’t that. There's little creamy or sticky here, instead chocolate and roasted malts allowed to run riot, a flicker of dried dark fruits, and with the hops really just there to hold it all together.
† Of course, you could just use a torch.
Published June 11, 2021 2021-06-11 00:00:00