If you want to learn about beer, you’d do much worse than to start homebrewing. What better way to understand the ingredients and processes integral to beer, than to get hands-on with them? I’m always reminded of this when I drink beers like Brewdog’s Blitz!. Beers of super-low strength that aim to deliver the same flavour hit as their heavyweight rivals.
Attempting to brew one of my own made me appreciate just how difficult it is. 5 IBUs either side of target and you’ve missed by 25 percent, a final gravity that’s 5 points too low and you’ve screwed up your ABV and dried out your beer. It’s a balancing act where everything sits on a knife edge, the slightest mistake will stand out like a sore thumb and there’s nowhere to hide.
Step up Brewdog Blitz!, a modest 2.8 percenter that’s clearly inspired by recent legislative change to halve duty on beer brewed between 1.2 and 2.8 percent ABV. Described as a West Coast hop bomb, it’s brewed with a grist of only caramalt and is probably best described as a US amber ale.
There’s lots of caramelly, malty, sticky toffee aroma that follows through into the taste. I’m thinking sweets with too much sugar in them, Flumps and candy floss. Sitting atop that is a load of American hops. Not in a traditional citrus and pine West Coast IPA sort of a way though; more a reserved, jammy, tutti frutti ice cream, candied peel sort of a way. The body is thin and watery, but whatever, what were you expecting for 2.8 percent!?
5am Saint Junior.
Consider me a fan. This is the beer that Nanny State should’ve been. Beers of this strength might not deliver the depth of flavour and character of those that are stronger, but what they do offer is a decent alternative for those that want something weak but worthwhile.
I tried Blitz! when the Camden bar opened and I loved it. Here, in the bottle, it’s great too. This should be on at all times in Brewdog bars, I would drink a lot of it and I can see other people doing the same. Top marks.