Monday, March 10, 2014

Die Hard, Brew Harder

Homebrew number six: Die Hard
So it turns out that this brewing lark, which only a few weeks ago had me believing it was the sole reason I had been put on this planet, ain’t so easy.

I’m sad to say my sixth brew, Die Hard, is something of a disappointment. That’s not to say it’s undrinkable or even unpleasant. It’s a perfectly drinkable, perfectly pleasant homebrew. And therein lies the problem: it tastes and smells like homebrew. 

V for Victory was such a wonderful success because it didn’t taste like homebrew; it tasted like beer. Proper Beer. Beer you might get from a shop or in a pub. Beer you might pay money for (though, to be fair, it could have done with a wee bit more carbonation, while the coffee did push it towards the cardboard side, but I’m being very critical here).

So, what did I do different with Die Hard, a very popular Golden Ale kit from St Peter’s? Well, I followed the instructions and nothing else. No coffee, no dry-hopping, no hop teas, no isomerisation. Just followed the instructions on the tin and nothing else. In many ways, doing nothing was as much an experiment as hacking the Cooper’s stout was for the previous brew. Well, I ain’t doing it again. From now on it’s adjuncts and dry-hopping and boiled-up malt extracts.   
Anyway, first thing Die Hard hits you with is that carbon dioxide-fuelled homebrew twang; that pungent, sour aroma that, well, tastes and smells like homebrew. Thankfully, it fades away quickly, and the light hop flavour and sweet malts do come through. Not overly complex, but enjoyable enough. And unlike V, there's plenty of fizz.