"The downfall of being a great beer lover and enthusiast is a tendency to hoard. Nobody I know is as guilty of this as I. As such, I’ve come to realise in recent months that I really need to start working through my already sizeable bottle stock before purchasing anything else this year, if for no other reason than to try the beers I’ve spent my money on whilst they’re still at their best. Added to this is the realisation over the last few months – based on certain depressive life situations – that life is too short not to drink the great beers I have available to me. I also need to find new encouragement and inspiration to write again. I have never wanted this to be a beer review blog (with the exception of Advent) but all the above factors have led me to begin a series of “Stock Clearance” posts where I drink beers within my hoard that really need drinking for reasons that will be explained."
"I shall further clarify that my beer hoard started to grow around the turn of the year between 2011 and 2012. To that point, most of my enjoyment of beer was spent within the confines of the pub or on a Saturday night in when the beer to be drunk in the evening was bought in the morning of the same day. The only beers that entered into “storage” were a bottle of Brewdog’s Abstrakt:02 (that I think was eventually drunk sometime in 2012) and a Fuller’s Vintage 2008, purchased in 2009 and that is still in my hoard to this day."
Mikkeller/Lervig Double Eye PA – 14% - 21+ months in stock
The next beer to be cleared from stock has suffered due to its unusually high strength. I seemed to pick it up every time I was having more than one in an evening and didn’t want to end up unusually smegged whilst sat in the comfort of my own home. Despite knowing that the style required it to de drunk a lot fresher (apparently still just a double IPA even at that strength, it was a beer that was continuously neglected, with those eyes looking more furious with me as the months wavered on. Finally it finds its chance to shine.
Lervig are a Norwegian brewery I admittedly knew nothing about. I did a little research and was surprised to learn of some of their backstory, including the story of head brewer Mike Murphy and the fact that they have housed so many of my favourite Mikkeller brews. Their beer reviews on rating websites waver enormously but I have never seen any of their individual brews available in the UK. The only other Lervig themed beer I know of is the recent Farmhouse IPA collaboration with Magic Rock that I have in stock but am yet to drink.
It’s clear. It’s golden orange. It’s as flat as some aged beers get. There’s a lot of sweet doughiness on the nose; brioche, do-nuts, caramel barleywine qualities that are all sadly overridden by a lot of crystal malt. I fear it’s desertion has affected it. The taste isn’t light on hoppiness, but is more dominated by toffee sweetness that provides a decent smoothness above the strength. It doesn't taste 14% and perhaps that strength has held it in good stead as its aged. There's lots of oakiness to the hops I've never experienced before, but the malt is like a thick layer of butterscotch. The grassy tang to your tongue is like little strikes and nips at the tip but never numb the mouth. This forms the greasy yet silky mouthfeel that lets this full bodied finish lap over your tastebuds. It’s probably not how it was intended when brewed years ago but it’s an experience and one that I still very much enjoyed this long on. And I don't even feel too drunk...