The sun is shining and if you can get out of the arctic cold blasts of wind you might feel like Spring is nearly here – but it is still cold enough to have one last tasting of lovely rich dark beers.

Today we opened a Black IPA from Beavertown Brewery – 7.4% Black Betty

There is a strong tropical fruit aroma as you pour out this lovely dark beer.  There was a small head on the beer which was a typical light brown colour.  The beer was a medium body with a very smooth mouth-feel that seemed almost creamy.  There were lots of legs on this lady and it ended with a very well balanced bitterness.  We really enjoyed this beer and gave it a great 8 out of 10.

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Next up was our very own SouthPaw made from an assortment of grains and milk sugar.  Our unbiased opinion was that she had the best head of the group (see for yourself!) and a nice sweet malty aroma.  It was a light-medium bodied beer with a nice balanced level of carbonation.  She would do well to age a bit more.  We have had more aged versions of our milk stout which had a very full flavour yet this one tasted quite young in comparison.  Over-all however a good easy to drink and enjoy stout beer.

Lastly we had Pope’s Yard Lapsang Souchong Porter.  We were intrigued to try this since we have been contemplating creating a recipe that uses tea.   There was absolutely no head on the beer.  The aroma on this was strong and a lovely smokey tea (as you would expect)  I noticed how different the smokiness was from The Kernel’s export stout which was more of a meat smokiness.  This was definitely a tea smokiness. However I was shocked when we sipped it to be overwhelmed with the sweet taste of bananas!  It really threw me and I found the sweet banana completely clashed with the smokey aroma.  I gave this a 2/10.

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