County Down brewery Bullhouse began life in earnest in 2016 on a part-time basis with owner Willy Mayne hoping that one day his passion for beer and brewing could turn over enough stock to make a living. That time has come and after jacking in his full-time job in account management, Bullhouse is now operating on a full-time basis with a crowdfunding initiative on the way. More on that in a bit.
Launch night happened recently at the Black Box in Belfast where a number of new brews were on tap for our delictation. Easing gently into proceedings with a 3.5% ABV Berliner Weisse, Pucker Up is a delightfully sessionable beer with an expected edginess of lemon sherbet – light though not too funky, sour yet a tad reserved. Think of a Sherbet Dip Lite, if ever a thing existed.
Next on the new beer menu, and in ABV chronological order, Brainwashed, a 4.0% lager named after all those macro-loving drinkers across our beautiful land. To quote that famous line from Wychwood… “What’s the matter lagerboy? Afraid you might taste something?” There’s a really pleasing simplicity about this lager that makes you wonder why the big guns don’t make something as tasty as this. An understated light grassiness slightly lifts Brainwashed and elevates it to a level that you’ll never see from a macro. If you’re a lager lover, it’s time to taste something. Seek.
And so to the final Bullhouse newbie, The Dankness, a 5.5% ABV self-proclaimed bandwagon jumping New England IPA, although the label simply calls it an IPA. I have to confess, after hearing this was a NEIPA, this wasn’t all I wanted it to be. I know others in the group loved it and I’m probably talking out of my backside again (what’s new?) but although it is relatively hazy with a typical thicker mouthfeel, I didn’t get that big fruity explosion usually associated with NEIPAs. Yes, some undercurrent of tropical fruit but not in the same bracket as Cloudwater’s DDH series or Brewdog’s Hazy Jane. Regardless, the label seems to make no mention of New England which is probably for the better. As a stand alone IPA, this is a murky, tasty number.
Good news too for fans of Bullhouse’s superb imperial stout Quest for the Milky Whey, it should make a re-appearance “soon” according to Willy. Also expect to see a new crowdfunding initiative on social media as expansion plans are underway. That will mean more Bullhouse beers for Bullhouse fans.
The Bull’s getting bigger!