Right, here we are with a new series on Tasty Fever, the Brewery Spotlight, in which I will write about a brewery and their beer I’ve been enjoying lately. I’ve sort of already done this in the past with my post on The Kernel Brewery, but now I’ll try and make this a regular feature of the blog.
Last month saw the opening of two new craft beer pubs in one awesomely boozy week for me: The Cock Tavern in Hackney Central and The North Pole on New North Road in Islington. Both of these pubs had beer from Magic Rock Brewing on draft, which was a sign for me that both of these places took their beer seriously.
I’ve had Magic Rock previously at The Jolly Butchers, whereupon I fell in love with the deliciously crisp, clean and briskly-hopped taste of High Wire, their West Coast Pale Ale. I’ve had High Wire both on cask and on keg, and I’m a bit more partial to it on keg, but some may disagree. I’m still quite excited to see it in pubs, whether on cask or keg.
Since The Cock Tavern is on my way home from work, I’ve popped in for a quick half (or two) prior to getting the Overground back home. While I’ve been there, they’ve had the awesome Curious Pale Ale, which is a richly-hopped session ale that has lovely notes of sharp grapefruit and pine. I’ve recently enjoyed this at the Jolly Butchers as well, and it’s a great ale to go for if you want something strong in flavour, but not in alcohol content, as the ABV is only 3.9%.
Recently, I was at the Jolly Butchers and was inspired to put together a tribute to a big event that’s going on in London right now with half-pints of Curious….
At The North Pole, I enjoyed a pint of Rapture at their press event, which is an excellently hopped red ale. Some people don’t care for red ales, as they find them too malty, but I don’t think that applies to Rapture at all. If anything, the malts in this particular ale smooth out some of the hops in the beer, but it still has an excellent flavour.
Earlier in the year, the Jolly Butchers had Bearded Lady on keg, which is a beautiful Imperial Brown Stout. At 10.5%, the Lady shows no mercy, but is nonetheless surprisingly smooth, rich and remarkable. I came across the Bearded Lady again at Mr Lawrence Wine Merchant in Brockley in bottle form, which I bought immediately.
Lastly, I’ll chat a bit about Cannonball, which is an IPA that weighs in at 7.4%. Frequently found on keg–in fact I don’t think they serve it on cask, but I could be wrong–this is an absolute explosion of hops. Citrus peel, slightly bitter pineapple and green notes welcome any tongue bathed in this beer. As of this writing, it was on draft at The Cock Tavern, so if you’re looking to sample it, give it a go there.
Magic Rock is based in Huddersfield, and they’re a relatively young brewery that only started last year. Still, despite the short time they’ve existed, Magic Rock Brewing has put out an excellent range of amazing beer worth seeking out at your local pub or in bottle form.
On a final beery note, for those of you who may not follow my writing on Great British Chefs, I recently wrote a preview post for the Great British Beer Festival on their blog. It even features some pairing ideas with different types of craft-brewed British beer. Fancy!