Craft Beer: Mourne Mountains brewery cans offer tantalising taste of the great outdoors
AH, THE great outdoors. Depending on what way you want to take the muddled address of Britain's equally muddled prime minister last Sunday, you can go on for miles and miles if you want, just so long as you don't bump into a family member who doesn't live in your house, in which case you can meet four of them, but only on a weekend when Aries is in Jupiter, or something like that.
Many of us have had to make do with (depending on where you live) a rather uninspiring daily constitutional with the same houses and buildings serving as a backdrop as we try to swerve the requisite two metres around fellow oncoming ramblers.
So when Mourne Mountains brought out three new IPAs emblazoned with breathtaking snaps of the Mournes, it seemed like further torture. Full disclosure: I've barely set foot on any of the Mournes' most challenging peaks since I was in the Scouts (I don't think an occasional jaunt up to the Big Stone with the family in tow qualifies).
Anyway, it's still nice to see those mountains in all their glory wrapped around a 440ml can of beer. The three in question are called Poetic Licence, Graffiti Limbo and Divided Years. The beers have been named after climbing routes on various mountains in the Mournes.
The photos on the cans are the work of Gareth McGivern, who also brewed the contents of them, along with head brewer Tom Ray.
I picked up a couple of the new brews from KWM Wines in Kilkeel, one of many off-licences operating a home-delivery service.
First up was Poetic Licence. This 6.5 per cent IPA is dry hopped with Mosaic, Sabro and Galaxy hops. The Mosaic gives it a nice juicy feel, but it is crisp and has a nice dry finish. It is a slightly hazy amber colour in the glass, with flavours of mango and citrus and a nice piney edge. It has the feel of a West Coast IPA to it and hides the strength well.
Next up was Graffiti Limbo. Also a 6.5 per center, it was dry hopped with Citra and Columbus hops. There was some nice sweet biscuity malt flavours, a good whack of grapefruit and other citrus flavours, with a bit of orange coming through at the back end with a bit of dankness too. There was almost a creamy smoothness to the mouthfeel and, again, it was highly quaffable for the strength.