04 May 2018

Just a beer

Friday evening, that's all I wanted. Fortunately the fridge contained the very item: a litre can of Eichbaum Premium, picked up in Dunnes. Into the Maßkrug and away we go.

It smelled fantastic, even while pouring, all fresh grass and wilted spinach. The appearance was a little surprising for a mass-market German lager: a definite haze running through the pale yellow liquid. The flavour is sweet at first: warm fluffy bread and spongecake, tasting like much more than its modest 5.5% ABV with a texture to match. The hops take a moment to arrive but do a great job when they do. There's a fun savoury fennel and caraway character with overtones of peppery celeriac and a metallic cabbagewater finish. The veg counter doesn't take over completely and the lingering aftertaste is marzipan.

This is a far better beer than I had any right to expect for a fiver. And while it is near-Märzen heavy, it's still quenching, quaffable and absolutely perfectly suited to the task I assigned it.

That emboldened me to return to Dunnes and check what other Teutonic delights they might have in store. New on the shelves was Schlappe-Seppel Dunkel, and I'd been pleased with an earlier one from their range a few years ago. Into the basket it went. There was a lovely waft of fresh green noble hops as soon as the cap came off and it poured a clear garnet colour with a generous topping of long-lasting café crème foam. Full marks for texture too: it has the smooth fullness of a doppelbock and certainly punches well above its 5.2% ABV. The flavour? Great! Sweet treacle balanced by the light and leafy hops, offering two kinds of bitterness. There's nothing extreme about it and it's very easy drinking, warming as it goes, making it perfect for the snowy day on which I drank it. I'm two for two, what's next?

I'm not sure why Durlacher Hof Weissbier was placed on the shelves across the aisle with the less interesting beers in Dunnes. Maybe because it comes in a can and they have yet to hear the good news from the aluminium evangelists. It's another workmanlike performance, however. Though 5.3% ABV it tastes light and summery. The banana is accompanied by sweet and refreshing pineapple juice, then there's a pleasant clove spicing in the finish. It does turn a little too sweet and syrupy for my taste towards the end; before that it does everything a weissbier is supposed to.

Sometimes just a beer is enough; sometimes just three is better. Prost!

No comments:

Post a Comment