The first thing that I thought when I drank Dotbrew’s chardonnay barrel aged beer, was that I really should have bought the entire stock from the off licence! This is the best, most impressive beer that I have drank in the last year. When I bumped into Shane Kelly (the brains behind the nano brewery) in town recently, he told me that he enjoyed this beer so much that he had gone through his stash and had to buy his own stock back from stores if he wanted a sup.
I would describe the appearance as sandblasted gold in colour with a head that looks like fresh meringue. I chose to pour this into a champagne flute and have a photo session with this brew, as though she was a supermodel of the beer world. Tiny bits of sediment or wood or maybe both in the bottom which is no problem, I drank that part.
The smell transports you to the edge of a field, bordered by forestation on a cool spring morning at the same time as sounding like lemonade bubbles evaporating on a sunny porch table. It’s the kind of beer that has to be described by setting a scene with places and imagination. The first taste is quenching and reviving, very complex yet pronounced, citrus then wood, lemon cheesecake then bubbles stir the flavours and change the palate again. That texture from Champagne and Belgian yeast strains is fantastic there’s also hints of pepper, creaminess, delicate, light sweetness, nuts, effervescent and dry, long finish.
This, champagne beer or “Bière de champagne” if you don’t mind is beautiful inside out. Appropriately adorned with only a yellow paint stroke on the bottle, no label. I noticed more chardonnay barrels in an instagram post by Dotbrew so who knows, we might see it again, or they might experiment and blow our minds in an entirely, new, genius way. Have you tried this beer? I would love to hear your thoughts, so comment below or tweet @jamiesbeertalk - Sláinte!