Moan moan moan. Sounds like someone needs a beer.
Tonight it is the turn of my professed favourite: Riggwelter, brewed by those gosh-darned Black Sheep people up in Masham. Whilst I've been to Masham I've never made it to the breweries, either of them, and so I have never really had Riggwelter properly. Indeed, it's first outing in my mouth was when it was chilled! Sacrilege!
The first thing to hit you with this is the aroma, and I use that term rather than smell most deliberately. It is warm and malty with a hint of hoppiness about it adding spice to the musty flavourings. There is a slight fizz as you open the bottle and it adds sparkle to the nose obviously but without being over powering or difficult to handle. Also it stays on the light side of fizz so that it doesn't take the alcohol straight to your head. At 5.7% ABV that is probably for the best, you want to take this one slowly and in good company for talking, avoid trying to drink too quickly.
First mouthful is an odd one, the smell does not really prepare you as well as it ought for that taste. Initially there is a fizzy malty taste and that is exactly as it sounds: odd. However, there's a definite hit of hops that follows, coming in as the fizz rises slightly mid-sip, and this balances things nicely. There is a hint of yeast there too, but it is not too bad and only serves to keep that spicey heat up a notch as you let it wander down toward your gullet. The after-taste is pleasantly hoppy and it reminds you that it has some fizz as it disappears downward.
It is not a friend of the spicy pizza I had for take-away tonight. However, I know it to be a good companion to lamb, properly done mince and most meats that are roasted. It is a Sunday beer, one you crack out to have with a big meal involving home-grown vegetables and lashings of proper meat-juice gravy. Not for Riggwelter your shop bought roast potatoes and gravy granules, no, this is a farmhouse beer for a farmhouse day of toil. Well, okay, I can't claim to have ever done anything like that in my life but it is definitely something to work up a thirst for. It's better as part of a brace too, and if you can handle your drink, you could go for a third but no more. Three is enough for anyone.
Drink in company. Have a deep conversation on hand. Avoid glasses, drink straight from the bottle or get it on tap. Eat a mighty roast meal, be carnivorous if you can - a nut roast might cut it actually, with mushrooms and cashews, I digress - and make sure there are plenty of proper vegetables that are roughly cut and picked and cooked. Sit at a proper wooden table, wait until it's dark and drink this with a dim lamp or under candle-light. I think this is a winter beer - though any season is good for it.
Words of warning and welcome:
This is very much my blog, so don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. Obviously it started out as a blog about my cross-dressing but it has developed a great deal since then. It is a place where I can be anonymous and honest, and I appreciate that.
It will deal with many things and new readers would do well to check out the New Readers' Page above this and the tag down there on the right. Although there's nothing too bad in here there will be adult language, so be careful. If you think this needs a greater control, please let me know. Thank you!