1) The Beer Is Your Friend motto is ‘‘friends don’t let friends drink cider’’. That’s because I really don’t like cider. Don’t like the sweet ‘‘it’s really made for 15-year-old girls but don’t tell anyone’’ ciders. And I don’t like the traditional ones that walk around with the ‘‘scrumpy’’ tag. I just don’t like any of them.
But if you like it – or even if you make it – that’s fine. Not saying it’s terrible, just that I don’t like it. See, I’m one of those bloggers that understands the difference – just because I don’t like something doesn’t make it terrible. Just means it’s not for me.
2) The reason for the cider reference above is that I never had much cause to drink the wares of Napoleone and Co, because they made ciders. But that’s all changed because they make beer too. And, unlike cider, I like beer. A lot. And there is a lot to like in the range from the Napoleone Brewery.
3) One of the most highly-rated ESBs in Australia comes from 4 Pines. And it’s high ranking is quite justified. But I’ll put it forward that Napoleone’s ESB is just as good as (or, just quietly, maybe even better than) the 4 Pines version. Lovely Ginger Snap biscuit aroma, biscuity malt with light hop bitterness running down the edges. If I see a four-pack of this in a bottle shop, I’m buying it.
4) I might also buy a four-pack of the Breakneck porter, which has a flavour that resembles eating Cadbury dairy milk chocolate while drinking coffee, or the White Goose Hefeweizen, which is surprisingly tart for a hefe. But still really good.
5) I got to try these beers because the guys at Napoleone sent me some. That may have occurred as a result of some shameless hints on my part. But to be totally honest, I’m always surprised
when brewers send me free beer just because I write a blog. I guess it’s because I work for the ‘‘proper’’ media and don’t think a blogger could have the sort of positive effect that would make the sending of beer worthwhile. But clearly I’m wrong because I and other bloggers (especially that guy at 250beers.com) do get beer in the mail. And beer mail is something for which I’m always grateful.