Another festival? Boom, as Klopp would say. Following last weekend’s ABV festival in Belfast, this time it was the turn of the Irish Craft Beer Festival at the RDS in Dublin. Hotel and train tickets booked, Mrs W and I were there on the Friday. It’s a fantastic opportunity to see so many brewers in one place who have to listen to all kinds of gubbins from punters like me – the gubbins intensifies the more the night draws on.
Anyway, some top quality beers were had. (Unlike the awful plastic pint glasses we were handed. Organisers, ditch them. They sucked.) I’d compiled a list (you need a list) of brews that I thought the cocktail and red wine drinker would like and one for me too. First up, Metalman’s 5.3% ABV Raspberry Chilli Sour on cask. “Fruity, light and refreshing with a nice kick” was her verdict. That’ll do nicely.
You know when most of your list comprises of beers at or over 7% ABV? Yeah… 7% Lublin to Dublin first from O’Haras (collaboration brew with Polish brewery Pinta). I’d heard plenty in the past but never experienced for myself. Matter rectified – oh yeah – Choccy McChocface.
Next, down to see the Wicklow Wolf guys. New 3.8% ABV session IPA Easy Lover was certainly easy going and a tasty sessionable beer for those who wanted a bit less of an alcoholic punch.
I love a good milk stout and hadn’t had anything from Trouble in a while so was quite keen to get my chops around their 5.8% ABV vanilla and choc collaboration brew with Danish outfit Coisbo. Another smooth chocolate milk stout that smelled stronger than it tasted.
Back up the hall for a sit down and then a welcoming yarn with the Carrig boys who I’d seen a couple of months back when I visited the brewery. A swift half of their faintly peachy IPA Grand Soft Day.
Of course a photo opportunity arises when I’m sharing the Mrs’ plum and ginger cider from MacIvors.
Next, a good blether with newish Co Dublin brewery, Hope Beer, and a try at their 6.6% ABV Handsome Jack IPA. A decent double hopped IPA with a tasty citrus bite at the end.
O Brother next, and the return of the much anticipated dark IPA Bonita. Their DIPA Brutus was my beer of last year’s festival and I was eager to see if the 7% ABV lady matched up to the 9% brute. Hints of fig and chocolate made for a tasty keg beer though I’d love to have compared it with the cask offering that was pouring the following day.
Finally it was over to torture, sorry chat to, Scott at Eight Degrees who poured me a quality new double IPA, Supernova. Maybe it was because it was the end of the night, I don’t know, but this DIPA seemed to be smoother than a lot of other doubles, yet managed to retain the massive hopkick. I’ll have to grab some of it when it’s released in bottles in a fortnight.
Didn’t manage to complete my list, I missed out on cask offerings of N17’s Chilli Porter and O’Hara’s barrel aged Leann Folláin stout among many others so only one thing for it, I’ll have to stay two nights next year! Roll on 2017!