BRICK LANE BREWING GUARDIAN BELGIAN TRIPEL (7.5%, 330ML); & MORNING STAR BELGIAN DARK ALE (7.1%, 330ML)
Sounding like the titles of daily newspapers Guardian and Morning Star write their own headlines while sharing a similar narrative thanks to the same yeast strain that underpins them.
Sourced from the Ardennes region in south east Belgium, and unlike their regular ale yeast that likes a cool, controlled temperature, the strain thrives at much higher temperatures, bestowing complex and flavourful esters that are wholly suited to both of these styles.
Guardian pours honey gold with a good head and lively carbonation. There are all the hallmarks of a classic Tripel at play in ester aroma as banana, honey toast, clove and green orchard fruit all make an appearance but its the bubblegum-like dusty sweetness that sets this on its own course somewhat. There’s a joyous interplay between the sweet and spicy flavours that meld and react, spitting and fizzing across the tongue as an appearance of alcohol warmth carries it all along its inevitable course. This style is a particular favourite of ours and this is an adaptation of fidelity but one that boasts a zeal all of its own.
For all of Guardian’s bright effervescence, Morning Star is its brooding, but no less complex, sibling working in the shadows, giving this double release a lovely contrast between light and shade.
Pouring an amber-mahogany with a tan-white head, sweet, dark fruit notes of plum and raisin are balanced with a peppery spice where both get soaked up in a thick cut of baked bread.
The flavours are malt-forward with a moreish, decadent toastieness and light caramel sweetness along with floral spice and leathery tannins before finishing slightly sticky with lingering flavour complexity.
A duology of quality from Brick Lane.