With Melbourne’s winter well and truly set in, breweries across the city have released a wide variety of more seasonally appropriate limited releases. The Clifton Hill Brewpub is no exception, with several beers now gracing its taps best suited to drinking by the pub’s open fire.
First off the rank is the Rauchbier, which pours a crystal clear amber before its bacon like smokey aroma lets you know it's a beer for the colder months. Flavour wise, it’s a malt-driven affair with clear aromas of smoked ham and a toasty richness that finishes dry.
Having started its life as an ESB, after seven months inside Pinot Noir barrels the brewers at Clifton Hill thought the second of the four beers here beer had developed so many of its own characteristics that they'd have to rename it. The Pinot Ale has a prominent tartness with hints of raspberry and currant, which, as the beer warms up, gives way to richer cherry and plum characters.
The Double Irish Red is an 8.8 percent ABV big brother to one of the brewpub’s more loved beers of last winter that, like the Pinot Ale, spent time in Pinot barrels picking up some rich fruit notes. Unlike the Pinot Ale, the beer still holds onto many of the traits which make it an unmistakably Irish style red ale. It keeps the malt front and centre, leaving a beer which is sweet with unmistakable flavours of toffee and caramel.
Considering the Red Peril is the third Pinot barrel aged beer to feature at the brewery in recent months, there’s a good chance the brewers at Clifton Hill Brewpub like to keep their barrels nice and full. Here, the barrels have added a cherry richness to more typical imperial stout aromas of dark chocolate and coffee. There’s less sweetness on the palate, with the beer remaining fairly dry and coffee and dark chocolate prominent. As it warms, those cherry flavours and tannins from the oak make their presence known.
Published July 3, 2017 2017-07-03 00:00:00