Wednesday, May 15, 2019

WEEK 145---Seeking own beer--some more from the past( PART 1)


Having written 3 previous column articles remembering some nice ones which either tasted while overseas or brought back to share here in craft desert KL---there's obviously some more worth mentioning:-
在亚洲,特别是住在吉隆坡这样的craft beer沙漠,身为啤迷只能向外寻找自己想喝啤酒蜜酒是有点无奈但也是其他城市啤迷会同样面对的问题,对啤迷来说喝啤酒这件事更多的像是寻找不同美味体会,跟一般人观念中“喝酒”没什么直接关系。
之前三期“自己的酒自己找”,选酒方面约略挑了些,这几年下来外求啤酒蜜酒累积一定数量,这期再挑几支聊聊:-
1) Russian River Supplication
An American sour beer from the fame Cali brewery more famous for their ipas--including the once a year---local release only Pliny the Younger---as well the other hops beers such as Pliny the Elder or Blind Pig....
This is a beer aged in pinot noir oak barrel soaked with cherries--with wine background influence---the wild ales from Russian River is never in your face sour but showing delicate balance and obviously very delicious. 
这家美国加州酿坊盛名当然不是虚的,除了包括每年只发布一次只能在酒吧喝到(没有瓶装)的印度淡啤Pliny the Younger和其他款印度淡啤让人折服外,酿酒师的葡萄酒酿造背景经验让这家的美式酸啤层次余韵丰富精彩,是美式酸啤其中佼佼者。这支几年前在本地喝的是白葡萄酒木桶中加入樱桃浸泡熟成,美味不在话下。

2) B.Nektar Dragons are Real
Mentioned the word honey and quite naturally people will only think of  Sweet --same goes for Mead since it's primarily brewed using honey as base---but that's only a flawed perception---this one will definitely change that perception that Mead is only about sweetness---with smoked chipotle pepper, tart cherry juice, cacao nibs added and aged in dragons milk stouts barrel--the taste is much much more than just a honey brew---with taste profile of sour sweet spicy smoky--this is a complex one to savour.
提起蜜糖酿造的酒,理所当然一定想到甜,而且是很甜,这观念某个程度来说没有很错,蜜酒(MEAD)的确比较以甜味为主导,当然比印度淡啤或多数其他啤酒类型来得甜。但这只是片面印象,这支混合了蜜糖酸樱桃汁烟熏墨西哥辣椒碎可可豆并在黑啤木桶浸泡熟成作品就结合了辣味酸甜,绝对会让觉得蜜酒只是单调甜的改观。

3) The Veil + Cloud Water Chubbles
The rise of NEIPA( which at times taste more like fruit punch than a proper ipa) inevitably made some breweries stand out among the hundreds if not thousands of breweries jumping on the hazy cloudy fruity/juicy ipa bandwagon---This collab brew is from two such brewery who are well known at playing the NEIPA game---tasted really smooth and balance--no over fruity/juicy/sweet issues found with quite many NEIPAs---this is a nice one to sip.
当印度淡啤被一些酿酒师变奏为类果汁或易喝或甜腻版本後,NEIPA变奏版印度淡啤近年变成主流,无论欧美还是亚洲酿酒师都免不了推出自家版本,这股类果汁印度淡啤热潮让几家欧美酿坊乘势而起,包括合作酿造这款的美国酿坊The Veil和英国酿坊Cloud Water。类果汁印度淡啤有过于甜腻倾向,个人并没有很喜欢,这款酿得均衡好喝,没有过腻感,能在本地喝到外国朋友带来新鲜版更是难得。

4) Brasserie De Neve Gueuze 
This old bottle came as a total surprise---a gift bottle from a Belgium beer geek's personal collections---though the act of sharing among geeks are not uncommon--but to have received this bottle was truly special--shared here in KL--with the gone by years showing it's effect with a somewhat rotten cork---there is almost zero carbonation--unlike what usually a younger Gueuze would show---with a still body--this one tasted very elegant--almost a light smooth oaky wine like beer---certainly one of the best lambic tasted so far.
喝到这支现在已消失酿坊作品完全是意料之外,也体现了啤迷之间大方/割爱精神,是比利时啤迷朋友私藏无偿赠与,被誉为比利时类香槟天然发酵果酸啤酒的这支酒龄已20多年,从有点腐朽裂开的酒塞可以看出,入杯也没有那种较“年轻”Gueuze的活跃酒泡,入口感觉是陈酒,内敛美味,木桶香余韵环绕,是至今喝过最美好果酸啤酒前三。

5) Sahtipaja MeadMe
Was really happy to have tasted this and some other brew from this small brewery from Gothenburg ---This is the Ori version with another being Bourbon Vanilla version---  both are highly regarded --really well made--the varieties of berries added did more than  just balance out the sweetness of honey but added depth and dimensions to the mead. 
喝到这支现在已消失酿坊作品完全是意料之外,也体现了啤迷之间大方/割爱精神,是比利时啤迷朋友私藏无偿赠与,被誉为比利时类香槟天然发酵果酸啤酒的这支酒龄已20多年,从有点腐朽裂开的酒塞可以看出,入杯也没有那种较“年轻”Gueuze的活跃酒泡,入口感觉是陈酒,内敛美味,木桶香余韵环绕,是至今喝过最美好果酸啤酒前三。

6) Superstition Meadery Blueberry Spaceship Box
Mention the word Cider and people will say it's light sweet fizzy and not much else---well---some of my friends who are either wine or whisky connoisseurs had this---and some went with words such as " mind blown" " how can i find this"
提起Cider或苹果水果酒,一般基本观念就是轻松带甜易喝,没什么太复杂的。不过,这支来自美国顶级蜜酒酿坊的蓝莓加苹果轻度蜜酒让不少喝过或啤酒佳酿或威士忌佳酿或葡萄酒佳酿的朋友都感觉惊艳甚至用到“味蕾震撼”这样的字眼来形容美味程度。

7) Westbrook Mexican Cake( Apple Brandy BA)
Mexican Cake is a famous flagship stout from this South Carolina brewery with many different variants---be it using different barrels or with different food items added---had this Apple Brandy version while also having a few other variants of the same beer---this BA version while somehow tasted a little thin on body---the barrel effects just rounded up whatever shortcomings the base beer might have had--it was hands down the best BA Westbrook stouts i have had by far.
把酿好的啤酒放入不同使用过烈酒或葡萄酒或波特木桶陈放熟成让酒的味道更上一层楼(或几层楼)是很多酿酒师都在做的事,不同木桶特质会给啤酒带来不同影响,这家的同款黑啤使用了许多不同桶熟成,喝过几款不同桶,这款苹果白兰地桶陈版最美味最对味。

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

WEEK 144----finding own beers(the early years)---PART 3

While beer is to many " just beer"--it is common among geeks to go through hassles seeking out beers in more ways than a common beer drinker can imagine---be it in America or Europe--there are people who are willing to go the distance in the name of seeking out brews which one simply cannot find locally--and the same happened( and still happening) here in craft desert KL with a few of us geeks who have grown tired of limited variants/selections available locally.

外求啤酒这回事,放在全世界有啤迷的地方可以说都是一样会发生的现象,CraftBeer小量酿造还有不同酿坊分布全球各个不同城市乡镇的特色,意味着就算是住在有那么多精彩酿坊的美国啤迷也需要不同州不同城之间或互换或托人帮忙买入,当然也有外求到欧洲的情况发生。
因为那样,身为啤迷又住在吉隆坡这样的沙漠,会在几年前开始向亚洲其他城市还有欧美啤迷外求自己想喝但本地市场不可能出现的啤酒是很顺理成章的事,虽然有时候要面对比如啤酒邮寄箱子扣在关税局然后要跟不懂为什么啤酒可以有那么多不同瓶子贴纸不同类型风格的官员们解释一轮再面对不合理的税务算法等等麻烦事,可以在本地喝到自己外求的精彩佳酿还是件蛮爽的事。
这篇虽算是回顾完结篇,但其实只聊了很小部分这些年外求得来佳酿,个人感受,如果你是在自己城市喝到欲求不满想进一步提升味蕾享受,外求是个好选项。

here's a look at what were some of the nice brews either drank overseas or landed here in KL--- be it through self help or help from overseas geeks/friends:-

1) 3fonteinen Oude Kriek
a sour one with sour cherries---that's the initial idea when i first had my first ever kriek at a bar in the land of Lambic---if you have yet to taste your first kriek or have doubts about this type of sour cherries beer---rest assure that it is not just about in your face sourness---there's a whole lot more going on once your palate settle down from the initial sour sensations.....
个人喝到的第一支顶级Kriek作品,所有爱上天然发酵果酸啤酒的啤迷都知道这是酸樱桃浸泡桶陈版本,也是所有Lambic分支中酸度最高的,但不要立刻皱眉头觉得酸死人,这种水平的作品不会只有酸,而是酸得来有其他美味层次让酒味有变化。

2) The Lost Abbey Deliverance
A blended brew from their own Serpent's Stouts and barley wine creation Angel's Share---the end result is a very tasty blend--especially since the stouts itself wasn't that great---but blending both makes a great one---if we are used to 1+1=2 then this blend is definitely more than 2.
这是混合作品,酿坊把自家两款不同类型风格作品Serpent’s Stouts黑啤和Angel's Share大麦酒各一半混合而成,效果是出奇的好,特别是把原本不怎么出色的黑啤融合後提升美味层次,如果说一加一等于二,这支的混合效果绝对超过二。

3) Hillfarmstead Dorothy
The hype/fame of this brewery from Vermont means some hhave been constantly chasing their beers while some are more sceptical/critical---whatever the opinion is---there is no denying that this brewery has got some very tasty brew ranging from American pale ale to Saison to Ipa to Dark ones---if there's a list of breweries which craft lovers should seek out and try some of the brews, this one is high on that list.
Hillfarmstead的名气让不少啤迷一路追捧,也有一些啤迷觉得盛名太过,不论是迷或否,个人觉得这家的作品是必须一试的,从最被人称道的农场风格啤酒Saison到美式淡啤Pale lAe到印度淡陴Ipa到黑啤等不同风格都有精彩酿品。

4) The Rare Barrel Home Sour Home
First ever Rare Barrel beer landed here in KL courtesy of a geek friend from America---this is one which open up our expectations to more American sour beers--while at times they can be too in your face sour---this one has no such problem.
美国啤迷朋友好几年前带来本地分享,在这里出现的第一支Rare Barrel作品,在对美式酸啤接触不多情况下,这是让我们几位本地啤迷觉得对美式酸啤有更多期待的作品,虽然美式酸啤有太直白,过酸不够层次均衡度问题,但当然也酿得好的,包括这支。

5) Lone Pine Yellow Rose
This is an IPA---of course at that time the now very trendy NEIPA has not been coming out like fruits in harvesting season as yet---but the softer mouth feel and taste profile of this sort of reminding me now after a few years that it is a little bit similar to a NEIPA --a very different one compared to what was available in the local market with those hops attack focus ipas.......
类果汁印度淡陴(NEIPA)是近两年才大热起来的类型,这支并不是类果汁Ipa,不过在强调苦味印度淡陴大行其道的本地市场来说,几年前因为美国啤迷朋友带进来能喝到这款口味比较柔顺并带着水果甜香的Ipa让人感觉口味一新。

6) Fantome Sur Lie
One known for their variants of Belgium style Saison---though some would dismissed Saison as too plain/ not flavourful enough--this brewery would show those opinions are misconceptions---also one which is suitable for newer craft drinkers to seek out for.
以酿造农村风格类型啤酒(Saison)为人知的比利时酿坊,通过不同食材蔬果酿造原料应用在听起来一样的风格类型中呈现不同作品差异性,喝过这家酿坊一些作品都是水准以上,是值得新朋友外求寻找的酿坊啤酒。

7) Struise Kabert
Stumbled on this one at a bar in Tokyo---while there were some occasional limited selections of Struise to be found in KL--bumping into this one was a pleasant surprise---a blend of the ever delicious Black Albert and the no longer in production Kate the Great from an American brewery--then aged in port barrel---this is a luscious one with the goodness of barrel/dark fruits/dark chocolate/coffee....only issue is hard to find one now since it's no longer in production.
在东京一家酒吧巧遇的比利时酿坊桶陈混合作品,以自家名作黑啤Black Albert为基础加入另一家美国酿坊的传奇黑啤Kate The Great混合後入波特酒桶陈放,喜欢比较浓郁带黑巧克力咖啡黑色果实美味黑啤的会喜欢这样风格的桶陈作品,问题是这支已停产,要找有难度。

8) New Glarus Strawberry Rhubarb
Undoubtedly the most amazing fruits beer we have had here in KL--while the general perception about fruit beer would most likely be "refreshing" or "watery"---this one is packed full of jammy fresh strawberry jam goodness--it's almost like chewing on a "jam beer" if there's such a term--absolutely delicious.
无可置疑至今喝过最让人惊艳的鲜美果酱啤酒,如果说一般观念会觉得水果啤酒大致会比较清爽或水水的,这支酿品完全打破那种看法,喝起来就像品嚐着鲜香草莓果酱,酸甜兼具,酒体厚实,绝对好喝。

9) The Bruery Weekday Series (& white/dark chocolate)
The famous big beers from the California brewery famous with the label saying the obvious  "contains alcohol"---of all 5 the most famous one is Black Tuesday---some of us here first tasted this famous series of brew when a stranger turned friend American geek came in with 2 suitcases full of nice beers for a two days "salvation/enlightening" bottle share---it was one hell of a share---definitely a landmark moment in the relatively quiet( in fact non-existing then and still almost non-existing now) KL's bottle share history.
美国加州酿坊The Bruery含有酒精周日系列和黑白巧克力作品,五款中最具盛名的是黑色星期二(Black Tuesday),第一次接触到这几支盛名酿品是几年前当美国啤迷朋友来吉隆坡公干时带了两个行李箱的精彩啤酒来“拯救”活在沙漠的我们,分开两天进行的瓶子分享会让当时的味蕾震撼至今记忆犹新。

Saturday, April 6, 2019

WEEK 143---Finding own beers(the early years)---PART 2

One of the quicker( and perhaps the best way) for craft drinkers to improve palate appreciation ability is to sample as many varieties of really well made beers not just in terms of different breweries but also of different beer styles--only by drinking/tasting one would know how a beer taste like---and that's exactly what few of us here in craft desert KL did few years back---seeking out some really good beers not available locally by ourselves.
如果说啤迷提升自身味蕾鉴赏力的其中一个最有效方法是在力所能及范围内尽量多尝试不同类型风格佳酿,应该有不少啤迷会同意这个观点。
和本地几位啤迷朋友几年前开始向外寻求佳酿的原动力很简单,因为本地乏善可陈的选择意味着外求是唯一方法,本期继续来看看这几年通过海外啤迷朋友帮忙或自己出行是碰到什么喝了什么比较精彩的:-
Part 2 of seeking own beers continues with some of the early years good ones:-
1) Omnipollo x Buxton Yellow Belly
This is one hell of a beer--full of peanut butter goodness yet there's no usage of actual peanut butter when brewing---how they achieved such depth /flavours is quite mind blowing---the label/packaging using a paper bag in the shape of the infamous Ku Klux Klan mask is not a play--but a message about racial harmony--anti racism---who says beer drinking is all about the moon and stars or simply to get wasted?
瑞典和英国品牌合酿,喝过的人没有不惊艳的,满满花生酱香气但酿酒过程中一点花生酱都没加的好喝黑啤,充份体现了酿酒功力和趣味性,瓶子包装以旧时美国种族仇恨团体3K党蒙头布设计带出反歧视反种族主义讯息,谁说酒只是风花雪月醉生梦死?

2) The Kernel Table Beer
The name says it ---a low abv easy drinking beer which is suitable for the dining table---to some "heavier" beer styles drinkers( stouts/ ipa)--a table beer would often got brushed aside as something too light/ too simple to notice---some felt it "taste like water"---but if there are moments when we thought water is the best thing in the world---same goes for a table beer which of course has more layer/depth than plain water.
桌子酒字面上意思是上得了餐桌的啤酒,因为低度易喝所以连一家大小吃饭时间也摆得上餐桌,这样浅显易喝的啤酒有时候会被喜欢喝较重口味款式啤酒的忽略,觉得淡如水有什么好喝的,但恰恰就是那样才需要细味品嚐,如果说某个时候会觉得清水是世上最好喝,table beer更加可以是那样。


3) BFM Biere De Garde
Swiss are not known for their beers--but this brewery is certainly a good one to note---known for their farmhouse/saison style of beers---suitable for newer drinkers seeking to up their palate level in that their beers comes with depth yet it is not too complex to understand---always a good one to have regardless if one is a geek or newer drinker.....
瑞士并不以啤酒为人知,不过对啤迷来说这家瑞士酿坊农村风格和其他类似风格作品是备受认可的,酿品具备一定层次但也不至于复杂到会让新朋友喝不出所以然,是能让新朋友提升味蕾实力的选酒,具备易喝性但也有一定层次。


4) Alesmith Wee Heavy
My understanding at that time is that this is a "Scottish style" barley wine-- thicker body with more roasted/caramel flavours coming through the dark fruits---as the name suggested--a little heavy one good for sharing with two or three friends.
美国酿坊的苏格兰风格啤酒(scotch ale),风味接近英式大麦酒(barley wine)但具备比较厚实的麦芽香,焦糖和黑色果实风味,wee heavy字面上意思显示这是酒精度稍高的类型,适合和朋友共享小酌细味品饮。


5) The Bruery Sucre
Anniversary blended big beer from the brewery famous with a label saying " contains alcohol"---obviously this slightly sweeter brew packs quite some alcohol power---found this in a bottle shop in Tokyo and shared here in KL with some guys--which eventually started the idea of forming "the KLtastinggroup."
加州盛名酿坊的六周年庆典作品,混合多款自家不同风格不同年份啤酒桶陈提味,是需要慢慢喝细细嚐的高酒精度作品,这类高酒精较浓郁啤酒适合三五好友分享慢喝,这支几年前在东京瓶子店找到的酒是在本地和几位酒友分享,当时来说,是属于让人惊艳的一支。

6) Grassroots Artic Saison
The alter-ego of Hillfamrstead---this one is a collab brew with Anchorage brewery in Alaska(still remember that LoveBuzz saison)---while some might think of saison as "simple beer"--it is also true that at times the most "simple" a dish/beer seems to be---there's a high level of skills/focus involved to make it right---this one is certainly a nice one.
世上最佳酿坊Hillfarmstead的分身品牌合酿作品,玩的是拿手的农村风格易喝型啤酒。有人说过,最简单的菜式越需要一定功力才能做好,啤酒也一样,Saison虽被一些喝酒人觉得平平无奇,但酿得好的绝对会好喝,层次中显见功力。

7) Toppling Goliath Psuedo Sue
The importance of FRESHNESS is often overlook/not known to some newbies drinking hops forward beer styles such as pale ale/ ipa and such----the scenario of people paying good money for stale beers is quite common here in Asia including KL---it is why seeking out a really fresh good brew of pale ale/ipa( say not more than a month old) is important if one is to understand what are the true flavours of a really nice pale ale/ipa---this particular one is a good one to seek out.
在本地喝以啤酒花特性为主轴类型啤酒比如Ipa比如pale ale可说是有时候会误导新朋友的习题,这类啤酒需要越新鲜越好喝特质,但在本地喝会有运输报税通关等时间关卡问题意味着喝到的基本已过了最佳状态,因为那样,个人很鼓励新朋友要试着自己寻找装罐/装瓶日期不超过一个月的新鲜啤酒试试,同时也要找一些指标性作品,比如这款。


8) Fifty Fifty Eclipse tasting
The first time trying out this rainbow colors stouts from fifty/fifty was at Mikkeller Bangkok during a pairing dinner at Upstairs( back when they were still new with of course no Michelin stars)---there were 7 of them---the two best ones on that evening were Elijah Craig and Java Coffee variants.
第一次喝到这家美国酿坊同款但加入不同食材浸泡不同酒类木桶黑啤是在曼谷米吧一次啤酒美食搭配活动,一共7款黑啤一字排开,以平行方式逐个品饮,个人感觉其中的Elijah Craig木桶款和Coffee Java咖啡豆两款最对味。

9) Hair of the Dog Adam
A good old old ale---quite thick /deep with dark fruits goodness when had the first time at a bar in Tokyo---same goodness after that having tried a few more times since---a slightly heavy one but quite manageable if one were to share with another one or two since it's in a smaller size bottle than their usually 750ml American counterparts.
美国加州小酿坊的镇店之作,深沉的旧式黑啤(old ale)中满满是黑色果实美味,从几年前开始第一次喝到之后陆陆续续再喝过几次,虽说可能味蕾选择有随着时间改进,每次喝到这款酒好印象还是保持,对寻求进阶版啤酒新朋友来说会是不错的选择。

Monday, March 18, 2019

WEEK 142----Finding own beers(the early years)- PART 1

The term "craft- desert" has been used quite often--it is partly in jest but also realistically reflecting the supply condition here in KL(or rather Malaysia as a whole)---it was hard to find beers that myself (and a few geeks friends) really wanted to taste---it became obvious few years ago that the only way to satisfy the search for certain beers is to "find your own beers". 
一直以来常用沙漠形容本地craft beer市场,虽有玩笑成份,但也实际反映我们几位啤迷观点,因为没能在本地找到想喝的佳酿,几年前开始自己找酒,或通过海外朋友帮忙或出国时找,又或是偶尔有海外朋友带酒来本地分享,反正是自己想喝的酒自己想办法。
这几年,因为那样。的确喝到不少佳酿,也开阔了味蕾眼界,累积下来也算喝了好些,要一一细说不可能,只能抽样选一些聊聊,来看看较早时期都外求了些什么好喝的:-

With the help of overseas geeks/friends--as well as own travelling or the occasional visits by overseas geeks/friends--the lack of varieties/lack of awesome brew issue has been addressed to a certain extent--we managed to try out some really good beers( as well as mead  and hard cider on a much later stage)---the path to seeking own beers was and still is a tedious/ hard one and not $ friendly but something i been doing happily, the joy of finding some gems was way bigger than any "hardship" involved in the search process.

here's some bottles picked out for the newspaper column--way too many to list all so only picking some outstanding ones:-
1) Alesmith Speedway Stouts
It was one of those "bigger stouts" which never made it this part of town---occasionally found down south in Singapore during those earlier years of craft drinking---a good one for newbies who is on their way to exploring " bigger" stouts.
美国加州酿坊盛名作品,是有着非常多变奏版的黑啤,比如使用不同产地咖啡豆浸泡桶陈版,比如使用更多不同食材香料的各款特别版等等,这支是基本款,也是指标性作品之一,对正在探索美味黑啤新朋友来说会是很不错的选择

2) Three Floyds tap-takeover @ Mikkeller Bangkok
It was one of the most "mind-boggling" tap- takeover this region has seen in recent years---imagine sipping the likes of Alpha King- Zombie Dust--Gumball Head and more on tap in Bangkok! there was also some bottles variants available for on site drinking that evening.
较早期在曼谷米吧出现的美国黑魔王酿坊Three Floyds占领啤酒泵活动,酒单包括两款绝对指标性淡啤Zombie DustAlpha King,在美国境内并不是轻易能喝到情况下竟然出现在曼谷让啤迷觉得有幸之余也有点不可思议。

3) Evil Twin Imperial Biscotti Break
Found quite regularly in Bangkok few years ago---considered as one of the benchmark "bigger stouts" which would help open up newbies palate appreciation.
丹麦酿酒师创办的美国“吉普赛酿坊作品,是较早期就能在曼谷找到的好喝黑啤,这也是一款有不少不同风味变奏版本的作品,包括跟帮忙实际酿造的另一家美国酿坊Westbrook合作版。这支基本款是个人较早期黑啤指标作品之一.

4) The Lost Abbey Carnevale Ale
A Belgium style saison brewed by an American brewery---not really the Dupont style of saison but no doubt a tasty one--a "small beer" which is no in your face like IPA or Stouts does to newbies palate--- one which open up my senses about saison pre hillfarmstead .
几年前在东京涉谷一家专卖吧喝到的美国酿坊农场风格啤酒,较易喝平淡口感中明显有不同层次,实际上,当时对什么是农村风格啤酒特质并没有很了解(也还没有喝到被誉为世上酿造这类风格啤酒最佳酿坊HILLFARMSTEAD任何作品),但当时明确感觉味蕾有了新体会,之后隔了好一段时间再喝还是觉得这是支佳酿,

5) The Breury Tart of Darkness
A dark looking beer at that time is mostly either a stouts/porter or maybe black ipa---this is the first black sour beer i had and it does help to improve appreciation level--not mind blowing but an interesting one.
黑色啤酒基本都会被认为就是味道苦苦的,这支来自美国盛名酿坊作品虽然色泽黑黑的但口感风味是酸味为主中带出黑啤烘烤麦芽香,作为个人第一次喝到的酸味黑啤,绝对有新感知,让味蕾体会更丰富。

6) Saison Dupont
A classic as they say---or some called it the basic standard brew of how a Belgium saison would taste---perfect for the hot and humid weather as well--newbies would not find this hard to accept.
到现在还是被很多人视为比利时农场风格啤酒指标性酿品,在有不少酿坊把其实并不是那么具备saison特质的啤酒也称为什么什么saison情况下,建议新朋友找一找这款喝喝了解一下传统比利时农场风格啤酒是什么风味表现。

7) 18th Street BA Bitch B Crazy
A gift from the brewer himself during CBC---a very much under-valued brew which of course is tasty with hints of roasted coconut and what a good stouts would bring( no herbal/no medicinal/no coke like fizzy thin body...)---grab if you see one.
很有惊喜的一款,除了是因为美国酿酒师在啤酒庆典中私人赐酒之外,好喝程度是更大亮点,作品属于被低估(或者说没被啤迷追捧)但实力坚强,虽是桶陈版本但没有桶味过强的缺点,顺滑风味带烤椰香,非常美味,也算是有点可遇不可求的一瓶。

8)Lervig Brewers Reserve Barley Wine
Barley wine is perceived as sweet/thin/big alcoholic beer by some--not this one---it's rich in taste profile and yet very balance--this one is undoubtedly one of very few outstanding barley wine tasted so far.
大麦酒有时候会有酒精高味道偏薄倾甜的毛病,这款来自挪威酿坊的作品没有这些问题,喝起来醇厚甘香,具备一定程度易喝性之余让人清楚知道甚至是佳作水准。

9) Mikkeller x Three Floyds Bla Spogelse Blueberry Bluebic
A collab brew--a sour beer which at that time is still something new and getting used to--it was nice and tasty for a newly soured palate--no sour face--only a happy one.
丹麦和美国两个大名鼎鼎品牌联手合作蓝莓酸啤,虽然没有比利时天然发酵果酸啤酒那种独特酸香风味层次,但酿得好的水果酸啤还是很令人赞赏的,这款蓝莓酸啤就让人喝的很开心。

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

WEEK 141----The early years---beers drank locally(part 2 of 2)

Over the past 6-7 years---the local craft beer scene has seen some nice bottles coming in--some still available off and on nowadays--some has not appeared locally for a long time---looking back and looking now--the local scene has seen little improvement but rather more of a regression in terms of varieties of styles/selection available---and freshness issues with ipas/pale ales is still something not pleasant to even mention. 
本地能找到喝到啤酒当然比上一期的上篇和这篇总和多很多很多,不过喝craft beer讲究的是酒的美味层次不是量,回望几年前本地出现过的一些啤酒选择的确是非常不错,不过话说回来,几年後的现在本地市场选择有点遗憾的并没有变得更精彩,反而是某种程度上有退步迹象,希望接下来本地业者可以精进更多元化精彩选择。

here are some good ones from yesteryear:-
Mikkeller Krlek
during the early years when craft first hit KL--one of the brightest names of course is Mikkeller--this is a very pleasant pale ale--and there's a winter version as well as a summer version--and i like both.
早期在本地喝craft beer必不可少的是丹麦米记不同类型酿品,Krlek是易喝型淡啤(pale ale),在相对天气比较闷热东南亚这类型啤酒非常适合冷啤酒消暑解渴概念,当然这款不只解渴,更是可口。

Rochefort 8 & 10
If you have yet to taste one of these---the differences between the two in simple word is about "thickness'--and obviously number 10 is the "thicker" one---personally thought these two is best enjoyed when newbies slowly improve his/her palate appreciation ability.
比利时修道院风格啤酒,属于有些品饮经验和味蕾功力後更能欣赏美味层次的较复杂啤酒,两款之间分别浅白说是浓郁度,喜欢比较厚实的可以选10号,个人来说两者各有千秋,不分高下。

TO OL Blossom
A lovely pale ale--the label kinda says it all--beer full of  blooming flowers goodness but don't get me wrong--it's not just an easy drinking flower flavours beer but wider and deeper than that.
可以说是当时最喜欢的pale ale之一,酒体轻盈但有一定层次,喝起来有深层花果芳香(绝对不是人工化学假假那种),要知道什么是好喝易喝啤酒,试试这款就知道。

Buxton Imperial Black
A black ipa--but with a twist of roasted malt goodness---it's almost like a fusion of a light porter and an ipa--easy sipping--very enjoyable.
黑色印度淡啤(black ipa),喝起来不像一般观念中的典型浓郁啤酒花印度淡啤,而是介于黑啤烤香麦芽和较浓郁淡啤之间带点甘甜,是美味易喝款。

Struise Pennepot
Interestingly--this is supposed to be an old ale enjoyed by fishermen in a Belgium fishing village---it's probably no exaggeration to say that all geeks here has had this one before--it was one of those Belgium beers which was available quite regularly here.
可以这样说,喜欢比利时传统旧式啤酒(old ale)类型的啤迷大概没有不知道这个的(这款其实还有变奏版),根据酿坊说法是从旧时渔夫们爱喝的一款啤酒风味变化而成,本地来说至今还是不定时能买到。

Modern Times Fortunate Islands
One which pop up in a flash and very rarely seen after that---a nice one for the rather humid and hot and humid weather of South East Asia--a pale ale full of tropical fruits goodness--only down side is perhaps before drinking best to check canning date.
来自美国加州酿坊的好喝pale ale,满满热带水果甘香,非常易喝,比较可惜的是,这一类啤酒需要越新鲜喝到越好,时间会让啤酒氧化,意味着美味退化,所以喝这种类型啤酒还是要注意罐装日期。

Mikkeller Nelson Sauvignon
A beer in a champagne or a champagne in a beer? that's the first question when drinking this---a very interesting brew which people in particular those who think lowly of beer should try.
早期让人惊艳的一款类香槟气泡啤酒,喝起来有像是香槟的细致气泡,加上啤酒花和麦芽加持,形成了喝啤酒感受到香槟特质但又明确知道是喝着啤酒的有趣体会。

Prairie Bomb
From then til now--this is still a very obvious benchmark brew for a stout with some chili kick at the back end.
至今仍然被视为一款指标性黑啤,混合黑巧克力咖啡太妃糖香草等黑啤美味中带点香辣劲,让味蕾有多重不同感受,可惜的是本地近年不再看到踪迹。

Westvleteren 12
Obviously one which needs no introduction to many who know what this one is---not only because of it's standing as best beer in the world as rated by beer rating site--but also famous for it's no labeling bottles.
喝过的人都知道,这款比利时修道院的独特之处除了之有好几年时间长期被评酒网站誉为世上最佳啤酒(没有之一),瓶子没有使用贴纸也是特色,只能通过不同瓶盖颜色和说明辨识这家的不同型号啤酒(有128号和另一款棕色啤酒)。这是非常偶尔才会在本地出现的啤酒,没喝过的朋友看到的话可以试试。

Thursday, February 21, 2019

WEEK 140----The early years---beers drank locally(part 1 of 2)

It's been about 10 years( or slightly less than 10) when craft desert KL first saw any sort of craft beer choices available locally---this is like back to the starting point ---looking back at what was available at local craft places(like only a hand full of them anyway) does trigger realization that we did had it quite good back then though there's been very little progression (or more like regression) for the last few years in terms of varieties of styles/choices.
“顽啤主张”每到年底都会写“年度最有印象啤酒/蜜酒”清单,借此回望过去一年碰到过的精彩酿品,算算这几年,虽然长期身在没有太多精彩选择的craft beer沙漠,也算有幸喝到不少顶级作品,但这些很多时候都是或通过啤迷朋友帮忙或出国时候喝到,要说在本地市场有进口能找到的当然不多,但也不是完全没有好喝的,这期就来回看好些年前本地craft beer市场开始阶段碰到的一些酿品,看看喝了些什么:-
Obviously there's been quite a lot of beers consumed in those early days---here's some of those:-
1) Brewdog Dead Pony Club & Punk IPA
to say it bluntly---most geeks would give a damn about Brewdog nowadays---while they have been very successful business wise in expanding to every corner possible be it in the UK or overseas market( word is that KL might see one not too long from now)---the fact is that beers from Brewdog no longer command attentions from geeks---once you past that early years of craft drinking---Brewdog beers became boring----those two were of course pleasant ones 6-7 years ago here in KL---and likely still nice for newbies.
很不客气的说,很多啤迷对近几年的Brewdog完全无感,因为这家当初让很多新朋友感觉惊喜的英国酿坊近几年都忙着扩大营业版图,没有什么值得关注的新作品。不过,话说回来,在大概6年前本地第一次可以喝到这两款酿品时,对吉隆坡这个沙漠来说是件值得高兴的事。虽说如今的Brewdog不怎么样了,不过对新朋友来说这两款(一个低度易喝,一个强调啤酒花效应)还是不错的入门选择,只是一旦过了关,就很难引起一喝再喝兴趣了。

2) De La Senne Zinnerbir
This is one beer which made it's way into KL some 8 years or more ago---thanks to an importer friend who imported in small quantities exclusively for his own Belgium restaurant initially and turned to beer importing after that----it's still available now along with Taras Boulba at certain places in KL nowadays even though the restaurant biz ended few years ago.
比较早期能在本地找到的比利时小酿坊作品(还好现在也是能找到),清爽带水果啤酒花甘香的易喝性高,对刚开始喝比利时大厂啤酒(比如什么H花园)的新朋友来说可能会觉得有苦涩感,不过一旦味蕾接受度被打开,就会了解到真正好喝的比利时啤酒味道长什么样子。

3)St.Bernardus abt 12
A classic no doubt---one which tasted sweet and so smooth it was a dangerous one to drink at that time because newbies don't really look at label for ABV at times---if you are new--do take note that it's a 10% beer.
这是支对新朋友来说可能点危险的啤酒,因为把高酒精藏的很好,不看酒标喝起来顺顺的感受不到10%的“攻击”。在本地算是不定期能找到的比利时经典啤酒之一,虽然一开始感觉喝起来香甜顺滑的,但层次不只有那样,如果新朋友酒力还在进修中,比较保险做法是跟朋友分着来喝比较没有负担。
4)Mikkeller Beer Geek Breakfast
When KL had it's first ever craft beer bar---it was obvious that the two Danish breweries TO OL and Mikkeller were the star attraction---this particular one has been a personal favourites--booking a few bottles whenever limited new stocks were in has been the norm.
本地第一家craft beer吧开始时,最亮眼的两个北欧品牌就是“米记”和 TO OL(因为当年两家是联合处理物流运输关系,本地进口商每次都会集合两家的作品一拼运来,可惜的是近年本地渐渐少看到这两家作品),“米记”在当时就已多产多变为人知,每年都有很多不同作品出现,那么多作品中,这款较低度“早餐系列”黑啤让人惊喜,是当时看到就会开喝的一款。

5) Yeastie Boys Golden Perch & Rex Attitude
This brewery from NZ is one of my early years favourites with interesting brew such as the very light body but heavily peated(nose) Rex Attitude---the very pleasant Golden Perch(no longer in production)---as well another tea infused one---Gunnamatta(tea in a beer or the other way round) ---sadly we no longer see any NZ beers being brought in here since few years back.
这家纽西兰酿坊有几款有趣好喝作品,这两款趣味完全迥异,一款非常清爽可口,另一款虽然酒质轻盈易喝却散发着不是人人能接受的威士忌泥炭味,是当年喝了再喝的两款,此外,这家还有一款以伯爵茶酿造的“茶啤”,喜欢茶的不会抗拒。可惜的是,这家作品在本地已经很久都看不到了。

6) TO OL Black Maria & Black Ball
These two has been the pick of the lot among some very nice selections of what was available back then locally from this Danish brewery---partly because back then Mikkeller was helping with logistic of TO OL hence the local importer would packed up both in one shipment---sadly TO OL beers been missing from KL for quite a long while since moving it's logistic to Belgium though recently some beers been available locally again.
来自北欧的“双啤”也是多产的,不同类型风格啤酒选择很多,较早期的本地专卖吧有不少精彩作品选择,这其中喝的最多的是黑色印度淡啤(Black Ipa)的Black Maria和虽然是理论上酒体比较薄的Porter但喝起来醇香厚实不输一些stoutsBlack Ball。当然这家的精彩作品并不只是这两款,不过以几年前本地能喝到款式来说,这两款确是最受青睐的。