Saturday 22 August 2015

Mr. FFID’s Beer Cellar: Three Irish Craft Beers to try before the end of the summer

It’s almost over and yet it feels like summer never really began. Which is a shame as there are plenty of great beers out there at the moment which pair perfectly with a sunny day. There does seem to be a bit of a trend towards wheat beers of late and these pale, citrusy, thirst quenching and refreshing beers are prefect when enjoyed at a beer garden or with a picnic. So for this post I wanted to share a few of my favourite summertime wheat beers before it’s too late.

First up we have a wit beer from one of my favourite Irish breweries, White Hag. I’m a big fan of their IPA and oatmeal stout so had high hopes for their wit beer. Fionnabhair (the name of their ‘Irish Wit Beer’) is a hazy, pale-golden fella with a decent head on him.  A very good example of the wit beer style it’s full of citrus with a light, easy drinking body. A perfect beer garden beer, this will appeal to both the hop-phobic Heineken drinker and the craft connoisseur alike.

Next we have another wit beer, but this time with a twist. The Irish craft beer institution that is Galway Bay Brewery have released a very enjoyable seasonal Gorse flower wit beer. The first thing I noted was that it was considerably less carbonated than the previous beer, with pretty much no head. The colour was much darker than your usual wit beer, very hazy and more orange than gold, with plenty of yeasty sediment floating about.  It smells sweet and earthy and the flavor, while holding on to some citrus is also pretty herbal and complex. French Foodie and I enjoyed a bottle of this as an aperitif with a picnic recently  and I’d highly recommend you give this unusual beer a try before the last of the late evenings are gone.

Last up in our golden trilogy is the Metalman Equinox Wheat Lager. I sampled and thoroughly enjoyed this on draft recently at the Big Grill Festival and was delighted when I say that it was being stocked in cans in my local supermarket. While staying refreshing and drinkable, this beer is certainly one of the more hop forward wheat beers I have had and is full of pine, orange, lemon and freshly cut grass. It’s a little more bitter than the other two but very well balanced with it’s sweet fruity flavours. I could certainly see myself having a few of these little cans by the barbecue and imagine they would go pretty well with some chicken skewers or bbq corn.

Well, it seems there are plenty of great summertime beers out there at the moment, now if only it would stop raining…

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