Saturday, August 4, 2007

ORGANIC HONEY BEER and WIZARDRY

Unknown to Harry Potter's fans, when the popular wizard's not shooing off Voldemort's Death Eaters, Herr Potter assumes the role of shriek-laughing activist with wide-ranging mortal interests, including natural beer. He collects bottles like the Kamuning Republic, but only organic ones. In his latest post, the bespectacled one recounts the origins of his love for beer and, even better, gives a sample of a few organic brews he's tasted of late. One's labelled Fishtale and other is Paddywhack -- both are Canadian brews. We hope he'll come up with more similar posts, and maybe next time he'll show the whole bottle (it's not just the label that's nice; bottle stems are important too).

Meantime, in ale-driven solidarity, I have posted below a review of an organic beer I met a few years ago. So drink up but, as a blimp ad in The Simpsons movie advises, "binge responsibly" folks.


FULLER'S ORGANIC HONEY DEW ORIGINAL
Griffin Brewery (est. 1845) in Chiswick, London, an independent family brewery.
500 ml. Purchased in 2004 Islington, London, consumed with Kala a few days later in Kamuning with cave-aged Gruyere. Beautifully shaped amber bottle adorned with the Griffin logo. "Wonderfully refreshing golden beer" according to the label.

With organic certification from the Soil Association of the UK, Honey Dew is one of the UK's leading organically produced beers. "Classic English malts and the finest organic honey give the brew its mellow, rounded character, whilst English target hops add a deliciously zesty balance.... [P]erfect alternative to continental beers." The brewers are correct here, the honey being a central stream in the beer's great finish. It is award-winning ale for good reason. The beer's great for a light-hearted, lazy day and it reminds me of outdoor scenes. It has a very refreshing character with just the right hint of citrus. With a medium head exuding a trace of honey, it's the right drink for chatting or quick breaks, a much better alternative to cold soda or hot tea. However, though I'd stock a few bottles if I had the chance, it's not a beer I'd look for for more thoughtful periods. It's afflicted with the traditional UK ale weakness at 5.0%, which thins out by the end of one glass and can even acquire a cloying flavor by the second serving. I prefer organic beers from the Netherlands, Bio Ben being a top-rater. But that's for another post. Find out more about the fine tradition of Fuller's here.

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