Category Archives: cooking lager

0.5% ABV Nanny State

What the fuck? I can smell the hops but what is this taste???….

How did I get to this statement? Let me explain. Its a Wednesday night, I thought I’d make myself a pizza. Turns out I’m not paying a whole lot of attention to detail and I ran out of flour, this resulted in my pizza dough resembling something more like pancake mix. So I headed down to the little IGA in the village (yes I live in a village) to get some flour. Did I mention that its pissing down rain? no? anyway.

I get the flour and some other random stuff but as there is a bit of a cue for the cash register I duck into the bottle shop section (where I got my Cooking Lager Tribute beers from) to see if they have anything cheap or interesting. And there I saw it “Brew Dog Nanny State” a 0.5% ABV insanely hopped imperial mild. So when I tasted it I had the following reaction – What the fuck? I can smell the hops but what is this taste???….

The first nose on this beer is just all about the citrus hops but the body is just non existent. I kind of like what they have done with this beer, lots of hopps, no booze. I could have 20 and still drive home. I’m not sure that I would want to drink 20 of them though.

Its a reverse extreme beer, but still keeps some extremeness. I’m not going to call it insanely hoppy, perhaps that’s something to do a lack of booze to carry it. It really needs some more malt though. What malt is there is a little roasty, however its got more of a home brew experiment taste to it. Kind of a home brew English Mild that needs some water chemistry work done on it.

However I don’t think this beer was ever made to be a worlds best beer. I believe that it was made to tell some English wowsers and funstoppers where they could shove their anti strong beer regulations. That makes this beer taste better. Some funstoppers apparently had issues with Tokyo, a beer that I think may be one of the best in the world. Some pommy wowsers thought this 18% ABV beer would end the world, and send kids straight to hell.

I like that this beer tells people who don’t get beer (or other good stuff) to keep their noses out of it and go back to knitting or showing silky terriers or whatever else they do. I hate regulation for the sake of it, especially when it see’s people trying to stop someone from doing something they don’t do themselves. Boo to the fun stoppers. High priced hand crafted beers with less booze that most spirits are not going to cause increases in gang warfare or car theft. They just taste good. Wowsers go home!

I’m going to have a full strength beer and make my pizza. It may just be an extreme pizza. OK no it wont.

Oh and I’m going to add the dry hops to my IPA from the weekend. This beer is neither reverse extreme or extreme, I think it’ll taste OK though.
Cheers D

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Cooking Lager Tribute

Aldi Süd, TrierImage via Wikipedia
I have some awesome beers in my fridge right now, some Mikeller, Cantione, Duvel, Orval just to name a few but I’ve been reading (and enjoying) a blog called Cooking Lager for some time now. Its all about Cooky, an English guy and his love of what he calls cooking lager. I’m not sure exactly what the definition of cooking lager is but beers like Fosters are in there and places like Aldi are choice purchasing locations. As best I can tell its cheep quaffable beer. Beer Uni students and tight arses like. He also writes about the UK beer scene, legislation and some stuff that seems to matter. I really don’t get a lot of it (the serious stuff that is) but still like the blog.

Anyway I was in my local IGA tonight and ventured into the bottle shop section. They had a bunch of cheap looking beer which formed the inspiration of my Cooking Lager Tribute. I selected 4 cans of beer, the 2 cheapest domestic and the 2 cheapest imported (full strength of course – got to draw the line somewhere). I chose cans as they keep beer fresher longer, and are generally a better package for beer. This has left me with the following beers;

Tooheys Red $1.99 Australia 375ml
ICE beer $1.99 Australia 375ml
Gosser Beer $3.99 Austria’s Finest Beer 500ml
Furstenbrau Beer $3.99 Greek (I think) 500ml
A bottle of chilli sauce from Belize (I was having tacos for dinner)

These reviews are for you Cooky, or perhaps more appropriately in tribute to you.
I started with the Gosser as it has the words “Gut Besser” on the can. I have no idea what this means. The beer is pale and yellow, not too fizzy, tastes like a generic European lager. I’m getting no hops and stuff all malt. Still I could drink it from a plastic cup at the footy.

Next was the Furstenbrau. I thought by the look of the can it was German. Wrong I guess. As best I can tell its Greek, a country not known for their brewing heritage. Upon pouring I’d say this is paler than the Gosser. It tastes of even less too. This beer has nothing going on. On the can it says ‘Quality Product”. What the fuck were they thinking. In favour of this beer is that it has a high wetness factor. And its very clear. On the can it also says ‘best before end” I’m going to assume that means that the last mouthful will taste bad. I doubt I’ll finish this beer. Perhaps this beer would be best used instead of water for boiling hotdogs in. The can is attractive though.

The Aussie Beers are old friends from my uni days.
ICE beer which I’m guessing is the old Hahn Ice. I think there was some story about it being ice brewed or something. I remember drinking this at the end of exams with my mate Crackas listening to Roxet and watching Flash Gordon. Ah the good old days. I think the ice brew thing got us in to that beer, it also may have been slightly higher alcohol. I don’t know that this is the same beer. OK on pouring this beer is clearer than the others. I can pretty much watch TV through it. It has a bit of a nose on it, not sure what it is (but it has a scent which puts in front of the Greek offering) and upon tasting it has more of an Australian lager taste to it. I put this down to less DMS, this is basically that canned corn taste that a lot of euro lagers have. Its still not much of a beer though. 3 cans in this is kind of a bad idea. What have you don’t to me Cooky?

Tooheys Red. I remember this beer being $20 for 30 cans. How could you beat this? Awesome. I also remember thinking that drinking this beer from a glass somehow made it taste better. It was always an economic decision rather than a go to beer. Has a bit of colour and a stronger nose that the others. This also has a bit more flavour. But not much. This would be my pick of the domestic cooking lager. I remember the add for this beer having something about a German back packer asking for 9 of them. Bugger that I say. This beer may be say 4 IBU with the Ice beer being 2IBU.

I’d really forgotten how bad these beers were, or perhaps wasn’t aware how far my beer tastes have gone. From today’s Cooking Lager Tribute I have learnt that if nothing else. And not to buy the cheapest beer at the supermarket if I want to enjoy a beer. These are not bad beers, they are faultless, and consistent. They don’t make me smile though so although I will enjoy a cheap mass produced lager at family gatherings and sporting events I don’t think I’ll be going back to them. Cooky I’ll hand this space back to you, time for me to have a home brew, a brown ale I think.

Cheers D

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