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Category: One to avoid

Mynamar Beer, 5.0%, Yangon, Myanmar


A contribution from an ex-pat in Myanmar who shall remain anonymous for more reasons than one!

In 5: Repressed, Semi-precious, Dubious, Lingering, #2

Booze and politics don’t mix. So how is the #1 beer from the #2 dictatorship* in Asia going to shape up? Pouring it from the bottle sat at home in Yangon/Rangoon, there is a definite yeasty smell which leaves me worried that the brewing process has been a little repressed. But I’m not going to protest (it has only just been made legal in this country and so I’m going to be one of the first to give it a go) and I have my first taste.

It’s a little flat and very cold, which on a Sunday afternoon in December when the temperature tops 31°C means that it goes down quick. I’d like to share this with my friends, but this is a country which made it illegal for people to be together in groups of more than 5 in public places. So I decide to drop all my sanctions and open a second bottle.

The same smell comes out the second bottle, but I decide to be diplomatic and turn a blind eye (nose). The label proudly displays medals from international beer competitions which at first seem like quite dubious accolades, but on further inspection it seems like it has actually won them! Unfortunately, for a country renowned for its gems, this beer is nothing more than semi-precious. It does the job, but it’s not going to take any prisoners (out of character for a country which still has a reported 2000 people incarcerated for their political belief). You can’t help but notice that the yeasty, murky taste won’t go away, which serves as a subtle analogy for the rest of the country that is doing everything possible to reform itself on the international stage.

*Brewskie challenge has been set, to review the #1 local beer from North Korea.

This article is copyright © 2014 


In 5: Tangy, Royal, Average, Disappointing, Consistent

To celebrate/cash in on (delete as appropriate) the Royal Wedding of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, or Prince William and Kate Middleton to those of you without an ordnance survey map of royalty, Castle Rock Brewery launched a special edition ‘Kiss Me Kate’ blonde ale, in honour of the beautiful brunette bride.

So is this a beer that is fit for a King? Or will Castle Rock need to deploy the archers to fend off the wrath of the mighty Wills?

It’s quite light in colour with a hint of ginger more akin to the best man’s barnet than anything else and with a lovely foamy head on top. So how does it taste? Well overall it’s largely disappointing to be honest. It’s just a bit of a generic ale with nothing special going on, unwavering from first to last while you patiently wait for something exciting to happen (a bit like the ceremony?!). We had to Wills ourselves on just to finish the bottle we had! It’s almost as if they’ve had a look around the brewery warehouse for a few old spare bottles knocking about and whacked a ‘Special Edition’ label on it. As is tradition.

Kiss Me Kate? We’d rather kiss Pippa thanks.

This article is copyright © 2014 


In 5: Sour, Fruity, Honey, Bitter, Tinny

This was another beer we picked up from the Micro Bar in the Manchester Arndale and we were hoping for great things as there were obviously only a few carefully selected beers on offer. Unfortunately we were a little disappointed by this fruity brew.

We were promised a ‘zesty aroma and a fruity flavour’ and I suppose we did get this to some extent but for us it just didn’t seem to work so well. We got the high notes from the fruits and a little bit of honey to bind it together but there was something not quite right. It left us feeling a bit bitter about the whole experience and particularly sour too. There was a slightly metallic or tinny aftertaste that lingered and annoyed like sitting next to a music class full of year 9 kids with the xylophones out.

We were drinking this with a wonderful home-made vegetable curry and tarka dal that Mrs Brewskie lovingly prepared for a house party. So maybe it’s not a great one with a curry and that interfered with our experience somewhat, we hope so, because we were expecting more.

This article is copyright © 2014 


In 5: Flat, Expensive, Processed, Dull, Bad

On a recent Brewskie outing in Liverpool we nearly wet ourselves with excitement at the sight of a German beer we’d never had before ON TAP! Woohoo we thought… little did we know.

First came the price, ouch, let’s just say there was only one place we were DABbing after paying for our round. Then we tried it. It turns out they got the name of the beer right, they just got the letters the wrong way round. It tasted processed, dull and flat, a pale comparison to some of the wonderful lagers that frequently come out of arguably the home of lager. Perhaps it was a bad barrel but ultimately they only got one shot to impress us and impressed we weren’t. We certainly won’t be in a hurry to try this again and unless the good people at DAB want to send us some bottles to see if we prefer them we won’t be spending our hard-earned on any more.

Probably the most interesting thing to happen while we laboured through our pints of BAD was DABbing up the condiments I spilt all over the scorecard, unfortunately for DAB we could still read our notes and they weren’t too clever.

This article is copyright © 2014 

Casablanca Beer, 5.0%, Casablanca, Morocco


In 5: Bitter, Unremarkable, Ordinary, Bland, Generic

Brewed with a hint of camel dung and a lot of sand we aren’t sure how or why this beer managed to leave Morocco and end up on sale in the UK. It is almost as if they have created a generic beer from bottled water and we have no idea how this manages to weigh in at 5%. Perhaps it tastes better on the beach in 30 degree sunshine but we certainly won’t be rushing over to Casablanca to find out. It doesn’t travel well and definitely doesn’t do anything for us on a rainy February day in the UK. On this evidence it can stay in Morocco – don’t drink it again, Sam.

This article is copyright © 2014 

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