Beer: The Cure from Fermanagh Beer Company a great tonic for any time
IT SEEMS that everyone knows someone who is either isolating or has been isolating. Maybe you've even been forced into splendid isolation at some point yourself.
The practice has become so de rigueur these days that people hardly utter the words Covid' or 'coronavirus' anymore. People are said to have "tested positive" or been "in close contact".
Of course, isolating is easier for some than others, and location can be a factor too. Take Fermanagh for example. It's a sparsely peopled county, although a fair chunk of it is taken up by water. Nonetheless, socially distancing there would be a breeze.
Providing any form of tonic from the virus (see, I don't even have to say its name) is the aim of Fermanagh Beer Company, brewers of the Inishmacsaint beers. To that end, they have come up with an amber IPA called The Cure.
Now, it must be said at this juncture that The Cure doesn't exactly claim to offset the threat of the virus, nor is it anything to do with Robert Smith.
However, the beer itself does possess some mystical healing properties thanks to the incorporation of water for them well of St Ninnidh, the sixth century Irish saint was also the founder of Inishmacsaint Island (see, you get a history lesson while you're here too).
For centuries, the Fermanagh faithful have claimed the waters can treat a host of ailments, although quite where it stands on 21st century viruses is as murky as the liquid which lurks down the well.
However, the beer itself is a welcome tonic. Pouring an as-advertised amber colour, this 4.8 per cent is slightly murky in the glass.
You might think that 'amber' simply refers to the colour of this beer, but it's an important prefix to the 'IPA' because this beer borrows elements from amber ales and IPAs. The amber side of things brings a solid, malty backbone while the IPA part infuses sweet stone fruit flavours like nectarine and apricot.
There's also a slight sour hint to it and some citrus zest poking through too which give way to a lingering orange marmalade flavour.
Medicinal or otherwise, this beer is a great tonic at any time, whether you are isolating or not.