Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Stick on some Turf! Cleverman Smoked Stout

Malcolm Molloy really is a Clever Man, Andrea must be a CleverWoman! 

They present us with Ejector Seat Turf Smoked Stout  and you know what folks for a first time commercial brewer (from talking to them at a recent tasting in Deveney's Dundrum ) they have hit the ground running!
From Their Web:
Drew Fox Brewing is Wexford’s newest Irish Craft Brewery and was founded by Malcolm and Andrea Molloy. Malcolm, a Dublin native, lived in the USA for many years and met his Texan wife Andrea in Chicago. The couple own a pub in Chicago called The Grafton Pub & Grill. Their love of craft beer developed in the windy city. Malcolm and Andrea moved to Ireland with their three kids in 2010 and relocated to Wexford in the sunny southeast. Malcolm wanted to start a new business in Ireland.  The couple were watching and supporting the growth of the Craft Beer Industry in Ireland and in the spirit of adventure decided to join the movement by establishing an Irish Craft Brewery.

The Sniff
Turf Smell, earthy tobacco after-taste. Theres liquorice in there according to the owner but I didn't get it. Smell is smoke, not artificial "smokey", not burning tyres but genuine, I'm no turf expert but in fairness for this bottle of stout, it does exactly what it say on the bottle!

Think of an old barn full a kindling, turf, twigs, dampness, musty and a Swallows nest up in one corner. I was transported to a family friends farm in Knockvicar Co. Roscommon where I spent many years as a kid! Can beer be sentimental, well to my surprise yes it can.  

The Squint
Proper fire fodder this one! Think molasses, treacle, tar - that's the colours you will be looking at, it's almost pitch black on the eye and light doesn't penetrate too easily. A dark digestive biscuit head that forms straight away, the colourisation of the foaming head matches perfectly with the murky liquid below. The lacing is prominent and the head is very slow to diminish, welcomed.

The Quench
The first time I drank this I had it in the fridge way too long and the full flavours really came out as I got the final 3rd of the bottle - I drank it very slow.

Upon this review I have sampled it at room temperature, it was pretty close to the fridge, but only to remind me that some things are better off not chilled. For what I consider a light enough stout it does linger on the tongue.

Very clean. No oily texture or artificial after-taste. As the beer warmed there were subtle cheese in there. Dwindling carbonation. It's light anyway and that's when cheese kicks. It's a text book craft stout.

The Finale
I used to laugh at me "da" when he's ask for a Large Bottle off the shelf, sure I used to serve it to him during my relatively short stint as a barman, I thought that type of request was was really an old mans drink.

This Smoked Stout from Andrea and Malcolm wouldn't be found wanting straight off the shelf. In fact I'd barely chill it, if chilling was needed at all.

A note to the brewers:
This is a quality beer, however there maybe room to punch it up another 1% or take it to 6% if they can. It's lovely but maybe found wanting amongst stouts of the same punching heavier. 

Only time will tell on this one, but as the rest of your range is 4.5% you may want something slightly out of left field to break from the norm. 

Without telling the Cleverman and Cleverwoman how to do their job, but Ejector Seat is a model for a seasonal blend at Halloween or Xmas, there's a few recent blends with Irish Whiskey out at moment and their flying off the shelves, Ejector Seat or whatever name they may call a proposed blend could do aswell!

Infancy brewery with a big future to mix it up with the bigger players. They will find it tough, sure who doesn't in a new venture, they have 3 other options that work in varying ways. I wish them every success, although I have a feeling they'll be fine. 

Here's a weird one for me! I loved the texture of their label, its slightly rough and it's a subtle difference that when you hold the bottle, it feels good.  Makes you want to hold a few more! PROFIT!!!


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