Thursday, March 1, 2012

being brilliant

So what happens when two of the greatest beer minds born in Iceland meet? Extraordinary beer is born!

Being a brewer at Borg must not be easy. You are free to brew fantastic beer but somebody else than you has to green-light it. But luckily, it seems that the owners of Egils understand what is happening at Borg and what fans expect.

Tonight was a special night at Kex Hostel in downtown Reykjavik. The brewmasters presented their prototypes and test brews, and regular brews were paired together with excellent dishes of food. Although having had excellent food paired with excellent beer, this post will dwell on the fact just how fantastic the beer were..

pic above: prototype for Surtur Imperial Stout.

They had 5 experimental brews on hand. All excellent! While I´m fresh and have pretty muched nailed down the pros and cons in my mind, here´s my verdict:

Test Brew #1 : Dunkel Weizen

At least that was the idea. This went down well, yeast was very obvious, and along with the malt this packed a punch. An excellent session brew which I sincerely hope that will get the go ahead..

Test Brew #2 : Weizen

Or perhaps it was a wit? Anyway, I´m sure the brewmasters will comment if this is not right. Very easy but full bodied. Maybe the least of the brews but good nonetheless, and surely the best wheat beer to come out of Iceland so far..

Test Brew #3 : Belgian Ale

Surely this has to be a Tripel! A bit American, with obvious hop notes but EXTREMELY well balanced. Sweet finish but maintains that perfect balance between all ingredients. Extraordinary brew, and an easy 4.5 on the Ratebeer scale.

Test Brew #4 : Imperial Stout

The prototype for the amazing Surtur. An all malt imperial stout, weighing in at about 8%. This is what I would like to call a perfect brewer´s beer, the aroma is simply to die for, overwhelming malt aroma packed with a huge body to compliment it. Extremely nice

Test Brew #5 Double/Imperial IPA

This was THE stuff! Pictured below, having matured in 18 months, this was a world class IPA! Huge citrus, piney Cascade aroma, firm head. A very beautiful beer to say the least. Huge body, well masked, very bitter finish with sugary notes. This is one of the best beers I have ever tasted, and something that could compete with the very best in the states. Bravo!

Amazing night, which also broadened my horizon. It was a joy to see fellow beer enthusiast and also how much this scene has grown in Iceland for the past years. We have people like Valgeir and Sturla to thank for that. This was hopefully a sign of things to come, and if we can take this night and learn something from it, one thing is sure, the future is bright.