Craft Beer: Kilkeel taproom showcases Beerhut Brewing Company's tasty fare

Chat and brews at Beerhut HQ for last week's debut taproom in Kilkeel
Paul McConville

THERE are very few legitimate reasons for finding yourself in an industrial estate in Kilkeel on a Saturday afternoon in September. One might be that you work there, but last Saturday the best reason to pitch up at the Binnian Enterprise Park in the south Down seaside town was the first taproom hosted by Beerhut Brewing Company.

I say ‘first' because general consensus is that this is the sort of thing that should be happening more often and in more breweries. However, thanks to a combination of ridiculously restrictive licensing laws and any semblance of local government, there are a million and one hoops to jump through to even get these things off the ground.

However, we were all delighted that Andrew and Neil had jumped through all those hoops on Saturday as we negotiated our way to Beerhut HQ ready to sample their freshly brewed beer.

The place itself scrubbed up well, with bunting, a nicely constructed bar and a chalkboard with the beers listed. First up for me was the Soury Not Sorry pineapple sour, which clocked in at 4 per cent and was a refreshing way to kick off the day. The level of sourness was just right and there was a nice wee bitter tang at the end.

Next, it was on to Lo-Fi, the brewery's new micro IPA, a style which has proved quite popular recently as many come in below 3 per cent abv, meaning having a wee beer or two isn't going to wipe out your entire evening. I still wouldn't try and operate any heavy machinery after a couple of these though.

The trick with this style is to dial back the strength without losing out on the flavour and making it taste too watery. Lo-Fi, at 2.9 per cent, absolutely nails that.

The taproom also showcased Beerhut's new Double Galaxy Mosaic Milkshake IPA.

One of the other great aspects of an event like this is that it draws together like-minded people and you can have a good natter over some great beer. One of the hot topics seems to be the whole area of milkshake IPA and although I had previously professed to being on the fence, I've been won around.

Beerhut seem to get the balance right when it comes to milkshake IPA; this one has lots of upfront juicy flavours, smooth, thick mouthfeel and an almost candy taste. Until next time.

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