Thursday, July 7, 2011

Styrian Golding Best Bitter Tasting

I slacked off a bit too much on writing up a review for the best bitter I brewed with all Styrian Goldings, it kicked Monday soon after the start of a 4th of our July BBQ.  Luckily right before it ran out I'd just poured myself a half pint, and had a chance to jot down a few notes and snap a picture.

Styrian Golding Best Bitter

Didn't notice the hop vines through the glass when I took the picture.Appearance – It took a few weeks in the kegerator, but this pale-golden beer cleared up beautifully. The stable sticky white head looks great.

Smell – The Styrian Goldings control the aroma with their earthy-fruity slightly funky aroma. There is some breadcrust malt, and a bit of yeasty fruit as well. The aroma is hoppier than most English versions of the style, although that is from someone who has never had one on cask in England (I assume they lose quite a bit of that fresh aroma in transit).

Taste – It is bitter, but not as much as the 50 IBUs would suggest thanks to the London ESB strain. The hop character comes through less in the flavor than it did in the nose, which allows the rest of the flavors to shine (a saltine cracker toastiness as well as some faint pear from the yeast).

Mouthfeel – Medium-light body with medium carbonation. This one would have been great on cask, which would have made it a bit smoother compared to under CO2.

Drinkability & Notes – One of the best English style beers I've brewed.  It isn't bold or innovative, but it is one of those beers that everyone seems to enjoy (which probably explains why it was finished so quickly).  I think when I brew it again I'll blend in some East Kent Goldings to mellow the Styrians.


CharlieBarley said...

Do you have a line in your kegerator dedicated to sours to avoid other beers getting contaminates (probably not the right choice of word)?

The Mad Fermentationist (Mike) said...

I've started keeping a sour on a cobra tap so as not to get the other lines/taps buggy. Not sure I'll always keep one on, but it is nice to have the option.

drewsef said...

Do you have any thoughts on brett/oak for bitters without overwhelming them? I've been thinking about doing a bitter in a polypin and thought it would be fun to add some untoasted oak cubes inoculated with brett c to add authenticity.

The Mad Fermentationist (Mike) said...

.5 oz of oak could be nice, even during primary fermentation! It'd be hard not to over-do Brett though... use Brett C for conditioning and chill when you get the character you want. You might be better going the classic way, brew an old ale with Brett and oak and blend into the young fresh beer when serving!