Continuing on from Part 1, let’s take a look at the remaining four beers of this Speyside Special!
Herr Keith – Keith Brewery – 4.5% – Wheat Beer
Following on from the raspberry beer reviewed last time comes the ‘Scottish German Wheat Beer’ from Keith Brewery.
Not much on the nose for me with this one, was expecting it to be a lot fruitier scent. Initial taste is quite yeasty – however I got a lot of banana following in after that. That taste only builds as the beer goes on, and lingers with a great aftertaste.
Andy’s Untappd Score : 4.00
Andy’s Take – A classic example of what a wheat beer should be, refreshing and quaff-able with a brilliant banana blast!
Spey’s Hopper – Spey Valley – 5% – Black IPA
I must admit, I didn’t pay enough attention to the bottle before I opened this, and was subsequently staggered by the colour, which I had expected to be golden! Upon review, I failed to notice it was a Black IPA!
What a beer it ended up being though! Smells amazing with a really heavy treacle note. Jet black and silky consistency with such a smooth texture. A fair bit of sweetness in there as well, and all these dark-beer qualities are then enhanced by a lovely subtle hoppiness lingering in the background.
Andy’s Untappd Score : 4.50
Andy’s Take – This beer really stuck out for me as a great brew. Brilliant texture, smell and taste with a really complex finish.
Moray IPA – Speyside Brewery – 5.5% – IPA
In Part 1 I tasted the Tropical Forres, and now we follow that up with their Moray IPA, can it beat the score of 3.50 from last time?
Initial impression is a very fragrant beer with a lot of strong hoppy character in there, and a good amount of citrus notes. Instantly gets you with a spicy tang which is followed up by a long lingering bitter finish. Really nice colour and a pet peeve of mine – the carbonation levels – is spot on!
Andy’s Untappd Score : 3.75
Andy’s Take – Overall this is a very pleasant beer with a good punchy initial taste that nicely lingers.
ScotcHop – Speyside Brewery – 8.5% – IPA
How could I ever do a Speyside special without mentioning a whisky based beer! This is a collaboration between Speyside and (I think) Glenfiddich and resulted in the production of both a beer aged in whisky casks, and then subsequently a whisky aged in the now hop-imparted casks.
This beer has a lovely amber colouring and a really strong sweet and syrupy smell that hits you instantly. That sweetness follows through into the taste as well, and the oak/whisky notes both come through but don’t dominate and overwhelm the beer like I’ve seen with a couple of whisky beer attempts. Could have done with a touch more hoppiness for me though. I got a strong raisin taste, but that might just be me!
Andy’s Untappd Score : 4.00
Andy’s Take – Compares well to other whisky/beer attempts which is down to the fact it retains it’s beery-ness! A nicely spicy and warming drink that offers something well crafted and unique.
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this exploration of some of the best that the Speyside region has to offer! Let me know on Twitter or Facebook whether these kind of focused themed reviews are enjoyable, or whether the main HCBC and more random reviews are the better reads!
Stay tuned for the results from the latest HCBC ASAP!