Tag Archive: Heineken


Heineken Ireland: Beamish Irish Stout (Ireland: Dry Stout: 4.3% ABV)

Visual: Very dark red to black. Large carbonation around the glass. Has a creamy inch of slight coffee froth coloured head.

Nose: Roasted nuts and sugar egg casings. Slight sour cream and chives.

Body: Creamy texture. Roasted nuts. Light bitterness and hop oils.

Finish: Creamy, bitter and with slight hop oils. More roasted nuts, Quite oily after a while. Charring and pepper.

Conclusion: It’s been a while since I have been back to the more mainstream side of the brewing market. Well, we do have here a beer aping the Guinness style, right down to the widget in the can for pouring, from Heineken no less. That should fill the mainstream slot for a while.

It has the expected thickness and creaminess to it, a bit overdone for me, but it does have a light roasted character that is done a lot better that the Guinness equivalent. In my opinion anyway. The main body is a bit odd, with the roasted and hop oil character that makes up the most pleasant elements going against a level of creaminess that would put many in mind of John Smiths Never a good thing.

The flavours are actually pretty nice, but it could really do without that Guinness trough of cream effect. A more dry base would allow it a much better show of what it’s got. The hop oils are nice, and the roasted character well done, but it just gets lost against the tide after a while.

For a cream flow beer it isn’t bad, but it’s not a great beer. The worst element can be avoided if you have a half, where it doesn’t have time to get sickly. I’d also imagine it would work a lot better on tap, but that’s a guess.  For a full pint though the finish starts lingering too long and definitely outstays its welcome.

Not overly inspiring, but ok in small doses.

Background: What is Beamish to me? Well the first thought is a Northern Museum, but no, turns out there is a beer as well. From Ireland, not Yorkshire. This confuses me muchly.  Anyway , Beamish was listed as one of Michael Jackson’s 500 beers, though I have a feeling this version differs quite a bit from that one. The bottled version is not made (I think) anymore, and is instead in a “Creamflow” can, creating a Guinness like pour.  However I thought it worth trying anyway. Thus my kind parents grabbed me a can while they were heading around Ireland. Yes I have mentioned its nice having a beer gathering family.  They tried it on tap and complemented it in that version. Many thanks.

Pelforth: Ambree (France: Vienna: 6% ABV)

Visual: Rich honeyed gold. Loose bubbled white head.

Nose: Very malty. Potpourri. Touch of honey. Slight sugar dusting. Slightly musty. Crushed pine cones.

Body: Malt and orange. Liquorice underneath. Quiet fizzy textured with a waxy style coming in after. Some oaken elements mid body. Slight toffee.

Finish: Dry black liquorice. Has an alternate switch between slick and dry. Finally leaves a slightly waxy sheen as it makes its mind up.  A slight bells whisky finish style. Smoke. Builds to a touch of malt chocolate.

Conclusion: I’m not really sold on this, if only because it only seems half there. That isn’t to say it isn’t full flavoured. More reflecting that it is very simply flavoured.

It’s got the base down pat. A fresh aroma, and a slightly waxy body.  That last element is one I see a lot in French beers for some reason.  Good chunk of malt sweetness backing it up. So it has the texture and the sweetness sorted. Then it just goes, well, nowhere.  Its like they decided to sod off from the workplace for lunch after they got the texture sorted.

Still, while slightly boring and inoffensive the beer does have a very pleasant nose. It has odd elements leading to picking stuff up like “Crushed pine cones” in an attempt to describe what I was finding there after giving up on finding anything closer.

So firm of body and weak of flash. Not one I would recommend.

Background: France always seems slightly odd with its beers. Somewhat thick textured and oft slightly waxy.  It’s an interesting stylistic choice.  This particular beer is in a very small 25cl bottle, thus was perfect for when I just wanted a quick drink to tasting note.

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