Beer but seperated by 7 degrees – Canute the Gruit

I will not be slack, I will not be slack, I will write on my blog more often, I will not be slack… Been saying this a bit lately, havent got it sorted 100% yet but I am writing now and trying a new beer which I will get to). Still havent typed up the few pieces I penned in Thailand, or brewed anything for well over a month but I am writing now so that’s a start.

Having a beer on a Sunday evening is always a good thing. I’ve already had a few beers this weekend, beers that proclaimed themselves to be really dry, made from beer, and made the clear waters of Tasmania. Both were at engagement related events, one we knew was an engagement party. The other was a birthday picnic that turned into a surprise everybody we just got engaged party. Both good fun, full of happy people enjoying themselves.

At todays picnic/surprise engagement party I bumped into some of my old touch footy team mates from my days playing for “Motley Crew” in E grade at Albert Park on a Thursday evening. Nothing strange about that however the picnic for some of Jacqui’s friends, whom I hadn’t met. I had to do that thing of seeing someone I know in an unfamiliar environment. 

This is kind of like the beer I am drinking right now Canute the Gruit from Red Duck, familiar flavors in an unfamiliar medium. Think sour liquorice in a black beer. This beer is 7 degrees of separation away from any other beer I’ve had this weekend, and that’s not at all a bad thing.

So what is a gruit? my simple answer is a beer made without hops (there is no doubt a more in-depth explanation but this will do for now). They were all the rage back when jousting was cool but are seldom seen these days. The job of bittering the beer was given over to herbs and spices, perhaps the odd berry. The guys at Red Duck have thrown in some stinging nettles and hawthorne berry juice.

So whats this beers like? Black, roasty, sour and hits of liquorice and fruity bacground that I can’t quite put my finger on. Calling sour isn’t really right, tart may be more appropriate. I’m not sure what stinging nettles or hawthorne berries taste like, and they may be blocked out by the lactic twang in the beer. Its only 4.4% ABV and has bugger all carbonation. I have no idea what to recomend drinkig this beer with, perhaps something deserty with plums, cherries and chocolate. Its full on but drinkable.

This is my first gruit and I like it. Go get yourself one, not sure how easy that will be as I think its a limited run beer. Here’s to Red Duck making more sour beers.

Cheers D

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