After the self-harm that was playing the recently released Bloodborne, I needed some form of beery respite to calm the goddamn hell down, and to stop me looking uneasily into every shadow.
Thankfully i’d left a couple of lovely beers in the fridge to top off an incredible Sunday roast dinner (Pork joint, awesome roasties, and proper homemade Yorkshire puddings, just in-case you were wondering….sorry).
An interesting one this – Thornbridge’s 10 year anniversary is upon us, and to celebrate they have brewed an anniversary edition of their first beer – the delight that is Jaipur. Reletively little introduction is needed to Thornbridge, they were one of the first to really kick the UK craft beer scene into action, so they are rightly held with some high regard. I thought it would provide a good opportunity to revisit the classic, and give the “X” a good go, having missed it on draught on release.
First up is the classic, Jaipur, clocking in at 5.9%. The instant you pour the light flax-like beer, it froths into it’s beautiful cream-ale style head, chilled to perfection.
Quickly, and without having to go near it, your head swims with passionfruit, pomegranate seeds and a hit of lime. There’s this light spiced ale aroma to it, reminding me of a passage from an old Star Wars novel (sorry, nerdcore) where Han orders from a dive bar – amazing memories. It’s Wit-like, but with a bigger bready malt quality, without the coriander.
It slips down the throat too easily – citrus juice explodes like taking a bite out of a breakfast grapefruit, with every part of the pucking aftertaste, big lemony undertones, overplaying the lime aroma.
It’s just made my cat do her typical “Ahmergherd, Alcohol” face. I have not yet posted a cat picture. I may yet. I am thankful she isn’t into beer, for it’s my one vestige of defence of food and drink that she won’t steal. FInally a small alcoholic hit dissolves into the juicy aftertaste and it’s done. Too easy drinking really.
Round 2 – ding ding.
Onto the “X”. It pours a little darker, as expected, but is unexpectedly light bodied for a 10% beer. It retains a light froth, clinging to the glass like fine lace – beer clean glass? Yes, Sir.
There’s a huge alcoholic punchiness on the nose, yet there’s no denying it’s roots. A lot more strong lime, almost a cordial element – with a weird touch of liquorice that might just be me going crazy.
The first taste overwhelms, and gives a huge toasty caramel sweetness, almost giving a berry tartness. Syrupy. The sweetness is massively overplaying the classic Jaipur bitterness, giving a mandarin or orange squash (from concentrate, natch) swirl to the palate.
There’s no huge aftertaste, but there ‘s more juice in this fruit. The alcoholic warmth is there, only.
“If it ain’t broke” applies to this situation, but as a beer in it’s own right, its…fine? Glowing Endorsement as that is.