Let’s get straight into the second set of 4 beers from our second meeting!
Rhubarb and Custard (Naylors / Malt Beer / 4.4%)
I’m going be honest with you readers, this was a bad one. I didn’t have much confidence going in and that proved an accurate judgement.
‘Wouldn’t feed it to my frog’ is Brett’s overall impression of this beer, along with the aftertaste being ‘long and wrong’ – clearly not a fan
Average score of a frankly shocking 34.3. A high score of 56 and low score of 13 puts it at 43 point diversity, but that diversity is only spanning the range from ‘Avoid’ to ‘meh it’s alright’.
It’s just wrong on so many levels, sickly sweet with an aftertaste that sits there in the back of your throat. Tasted so artificial as well which is never a good thing where beer is concerned.
Andy’s Take – Scored it 30 – The worst beer we have had here at HCBC, and the first one I would genuinely put in the ‘don’t even buy it out of curiosity’ category.
Position on the night – 8th (out of 8)
Disliked most by – Tom
Liked most by – Alex
Favourite of – No-one (Unsurprisingly)
Imperial Biscotti Break (Evil Twin / Stout / 11.5%)
Following on from the disappointment of Rhubarb and Custard, we had high hopes for this beer. But did we come away happy?! Imp. Biscotti Break is a stout brewed with coffee, vanilla and almonds ratcheted up to 11.5%.
At 11.5% you can probably agree with Brett’s assessment for drinkability – ‘one pint = pissed’! Whether that is a good thing or not depends on your point of view!
Well well well. A whopping great 76.8 average score surpasses any previous beer and in fact became the best beer of HCBC so far. Diversity comes in at 27 but all of those scores are above 60! An interesting thing to point out though, is if you remove the two ‘outliers’ (a 91 and a 64) then the average is still 76.5!
An average score of 16.6/20 for aftertaste shows where this beer really shines. The appearance and smell also both did very well. Unsurprisingly, dink-ability is the lowest category which makes sense with an 11.5% beer!
Andy’s Take – Scored it 75 – A really great beer that hits you with a strong marzipan taste and a consistency like engine oil (that’s a good thing!) However, I definitely couldn’t have too much of it, as it’s very strong in taste as well as ABV.
Position on the night – 1st
Disliked Most By – Fork
Liked Most By – Alex
Favorite of – Alex
The Yard (Neon Raptor / Milkshake IPA / 6.8%)
The Yard comes from Neon Raptor Brewing Co. which is from my hometown of Nottingham. A fruity IPA with added lactose and vanilla to give it that ‘milkshake’ vibe.
This was a surprising beer to all of us, and Brett sums it up under taste with a comment of ‘Surprisingly Sour, too sour, sourrrr’
As Brett said, this really surprised us with it’s sourness. We were all coming in to it expecting a more IPA-like beer but with a creamy mouthfeel from the lactose and what we got was more like a sour.
Overall it got an average of 54.8 which in itself is decent, but I can’t help but feel that could have been higher. A high score of 66 and low score of 38 means it wasn’t particularly divisive, with it coming off worst in aftertaste but doing quite strongly in drinkability.
Andy’s Take – Scored it 64 – I liked this beer, though I can’t shake the feeling that we might have had a slightly bad batch as I can’t equate the big sourness that we all got to other reviews I’ve seen that describe the lactose-IPA we expected. Interestingly, that didn’t actually detract from the beer with quite a few of us actually enjoying that. This one will be making a re-appearance at some point to see if I’m right about this one not being quite right.
Position on the night – 4th
Disliked most by – Brett
Liked most by – Andrew
Favorite of – No-one!
Leeds Beer Week 2018 (Northern Monk / TDH Pale Ale / 5.5%)
The final beer of this second edition of the fledgling HCBC blog is Leeds Beer Week 2018. A triple dry hopped pale ale brewed as a collab with Northern Monk for Leeds Beer Week, packed to the rafters with hops and described as a ‘Crush-able Pale Ale’.
Once again I’m just going to put several of Brett’s comments to sum things up;
Taste – Creamy, smooth, well balanced
Aftertaste – Lots – makes me drool
Drinkability – All of the time
Coming in with an average of 74.8 it’s only just beaten to the top spot by Imperial Biscotti Break, and just about pips Banoffee Porter to this weeks Silver Medal. Exactly the same overall diversity as IBB but much more diverse scores within that range.
This did very well in drinkability with its smooth creamy taste, and it recorded by far the best scores for smell we’ve seen with no one giving below 9. Slightly let down on aftertaste, but I put that down to some people not liking the bitterness that so much hops bring to the table.
Andy’s Take – Scored it 81 – Really lovely beer. I got a strong hit of juicy pineapple, and a thick creamy mouthfeel. Andrew described it as ‘Limoncello with beer’ and that’s not too far off either.
Position on the night – 2nd
Most liked by – Brett
Least liked by – Alex
Favourite of – Brett, Andrew
The second meeting was definitely more of a roller coaster in terms of beer quality with the 2 lowest rated beers and 3 highest rated beers all being sampled this week. Lets give out some awards!
Least Liked Beer – Rhubarb and Custard takes the one nobody want’s to win this week, unfortunately the artificial taste was just too much for most of us.
Best Beer – The overall best beer on the night was Imperial Biscotti Break from Evil Twin Brewing, though Leeds Beer Week ran it very close indeed!
Strongest Opinion – This weeks strongest opinion goes to Tom who gave Banoffee Porter a big 82 but the Rhubarb and Custard a paltry 13, giving him a swing of 69 points!
Beer Junkie – The newcomer for this week, Dr Andrew Barr, gave out the most points in total with a nice round 500 points given out. Brett ran him close with 495!
‘Beer Isn’t For Me’ – Allowing for the fact that Alex (424) didn’t sample Wye, then unsurprisingly the award goes to Fork who gave out a measly 425 points!
Least Divisive – Whilst last week this was an alternative to best beer, it certainly isn’t this week. The second lowest rated beer, Garlic Beer, is the least divisive with 16, showing that it was pretty universally disliked.
Most Divisive – Sensing a pattern with the most divisive beers that they tend to be at the darker end of the beer spectrum, this week most divisive was poor old Banoffee Porter (my fave) which varied from 88 to 39 giving it a healthy 49 diversity swing.
The updated league table therefore looks like this, with 3 new beers sitting in the medal positions!
As always, see below for the graphs and full ratings break downs, and stay tuned for HCBC 3 coming soon! Cheers!