There’s a very good reason why I’m reviewing The Quiet American – an old Little Creatures Single Batch release – alongside the latest one.
That’s because the brewers at LC kept the release of the new Single Batch Shepherd’s Delight very quiet indeed, with people far more on the pulse of beery things than I being caught by surprise.
Geddit? They kept it quiet and I’m also reviewing The Quiet American? Yeah, it’s actually a pretty crap reason. And not really at all true. What actually happened is I’d had a bottle of The Quiet American in the fridge at home for ages. When I got some samples of the Shepherd’s Delight red IPA I looked at the best before date and went ‘‘January 3, 2013? Holy shit, I’d better drink this now!’’.
And so a blog post is born.
The Quiet is a mix of two styles – Belgian trappist (the ‘‘Quiet’’) and US IPA (the ‘‘American’’, obviously). One thing that impressed me when I’d had it before was how it totally shifted characters. At the start it was all spicy Belgian flavours but, as the glass warms up, the pineapple and resiny notes of the US IPA dominate.
This time around, the Belgian flavour tended to stick around for the whole drink, with a bit of pineapple mingling in at the back.
And so onto the latest Single Batch, the red IPA that is Shepherd’s Delight. It features six different hops, including the Australian fave Galaxy and the intriguingly named Victoria Secret. Also in the ingredient list is a kiwi hop called Dr Rudi. I don’t know what it tastes like but I want to make a homebrew with Dr Rudi just because of the awesomeness of that name.
As you’d expect from a red ale, the colour in the glass is copper-orange. On the nose I copped a whack of the piney Chinook hops, which is what you’d expect from an IPA.
At first I couldn’t really detect much flavour; the front end of the palate didn’t have much going on. but then we entered the mid-palate where a whole lot of stuff is going on. There’s a resiny, biscuity flavour that’s followed by a delicious orange citrus tang with a slightly spicy underpinning.
I have heard rumours that this beer may be scheduled to become part of the regular range. To which I say, ‘‘can we have The Big Dipper’’ instead?’’. If the answer to that is ‘‘no’’, then I can totally handle Shepherd’s Delight being around all the time.