Experimented with some different beer styles last night, had some friends round to celebrate failed terrorist attacks. On offer were three home made concoctions, made specifically for the event, that showcased three very different types of ale.
From left to right, first was a stout (Guinness-like) that I've had aging in bottles for a couple of months, it was black and viscous like engine oil, creamy, smooth and malty with a fluffy tan coloured head and spruced up a bit via the addition of some flavorsome American hops (UK stouts tend not to have much in the way of hop additions). Next (middle) was an American style wheat beer, light and airy almost lager like with a fluffy head and good carbonation, good, but my least favourite. Last was a New England style IPA (India Pale Ale), brewed with Vermont yeast and a ton of fruity hops. This last beer was perhaps the least common of the three, made in an unusual way with lots of flaked oats and flaked wheat (to make it hazy with a really creamy white head) and by adding fresh hops during active fermentation (normally done after fermentation has completed) The result is a really fruity flavour, peaches, orange, grapefruit and a nice bubble-gum background with hardly any bitterness at all; an interesting and fairly new way to do IPA's also enhanced by the addition of some golden syrup and treacle at the start of the boil.
The verdict was generally good, no one spat anything out (always a good sign) and of the three styles the stout won the day (probably the most familiar). The wheat beer went down well with the lager drinkers and my East Coast IPA was generally greeted with an "interesting" response which is kind of what I would expect since it's a very distinct (in your face) type of beer. All in all a successful evening, all the brews were around the 5% mark and by the end there were none left! People went home with a warming Autumnal "glow" about them..