Craft Beer: Boundary's Black Is The Colour and Pharaonic strong and flavoursome

Boundary's Black Is The Colour clocks in at a mighty 7.7 per cent
Paul McConville

THE clickbait social media videos of people trampling over each other in a frenzied bout of violent consumerism may not be as prevalent this year, but the last Friday in November still involved savvy shoppers/utter lunatics (*delete as appropriate) hauling themselves out of their warm beds at stupid o'clock in the pitch dark to grab the early bargains.

Black Friday, though, has manspread itself all over the ensuing week, to the point where the colour black is adorning shop fronts for days after the prescribed Friday. It's enough to drive you to drink, and although I didn't pound the pavements in search of cut-price offers, I still rewarded myself with a lovely little tipple from Boundary last Friday.

Naturally enough, in a nod to the day, I opted for Black Is The Colour, a name which probably at one point might have conjured up a song made famous by Christy Moore.

Anyway, this is a black IPA which clocks in at a mighty 7.7 per cent. It pours black in the glass but not pitch black like a stout; it has more of the consistency of a thin porter, with a little bit of light bleeding through at the bottom.

A dark beer like this usually throws up some roasty notes but they're subtle here, and don't get in the way of the lovely juicy flavours which permeate the beer. There's a nice malty taste before those dank and juicy flavours kick in, and the strength gives it a nice warming feel.

They've crammed a fair few hops into this one – Cascade, Chinook, Columbus, Centennial and Mosaic – and it tends very much towards the hoppy end of things as far as black IPAs go.

I followed up Black Is The Colour with another Boundary offering and just how wise that was is up for debate as it was an 8 per cent DIPA. Pharaonic is not only strong, it packs a flavour punch too.

There's a fair bit going on here, starting off with the cloudy, hazy amber beer fizzy away in the glass. The carbonation quickly dies down and in flood flavours peach, orange and orange peel, all nicely escorted over the palate with a soft, almost creamy mouthfeel.

Then there is a nice piney bite of those west coast hops which put this beer fairly in the American-style of IPAs. For an 8 per center, this one goes down far too easily.

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