Note: free samples were provided by the brewery for tonight’s update. Opinions my own.
Tonight’s festivities were hosted by Bianca Road Brewing Co – a new one on me from South London. They immediately made an impression by including an info sheet with the delivery, and as you’ll see from the photos below, the presentation is all very clean and attractive.
Session IPA / 3.8%
Nose: malty / citrus / hint of peach
Mouth: as above
Notes: I’ve had a lot of “session IPAs” and they’ve all been fine beverages, but what nails this one is the fact that it’s actually sessionable. A low ABV is one thing, but I’ve had quite a few that seem to offset the lack of alcoholic punch by being as bitter as grapefruit juice.
Not so this one – the citrus and biscuity malt character is all there – you can tell this is an IPA and not a straight pale – but dialled back to manageable levels so you could quite happily quaff a few of these. It’s pretty dry, but in a good way.
Lager / 4.8%
Nose: bittersweet / bready
Mouth: as above / peppery
Notes: I very rarely buy lager these days. Whenever I’m in a purchasing situation with choices to be made, I’ll almost always prioritise more “interesting” things (I tend to gravitate towards IPAs, DIPAs and strong dark things like imperial stouts or Belgian dark ales).
There has been the odd exception (Meantime’s London Lager comes to mind). But this thing from Bianca Road is a thing of beauty – stunningly easy to drink, but so flavoursome that it reminds you of what lager is supposed to taste like. It’s interestingly peppery and bittersweet – I may start buying more craft lagers…
Paradise IPA / 5.3%
Nose: orange / passionfruit / mango
Mouth: as above
Notes: turns out this one is dry-hopped with Citra and Amarillo, two of my favourite hop varieties (renowned for grapefruit and orange notes respectively). This is pure summer – not aggressive or overly bitter, just relaxing and tropical, like it says on the tin. It actually does say on the tin.
I’d actually happily seek out any of these as a repeat purchase. Many thanks guys for being gracious hosts and providing really, really nice beers.