Tuesday, 13 March 2012

REVIEW #66: Saint Petersburg (Thornbridge Brewery)

Pours oily black with decent dark tan head. Bubblegum fruit nose with herbal and biscuit notes. Sweet peach and apricot esters up front with a cream soda thing going on. The toffee/biscuit malts are subdued a little by pungent hops but lend a surprising amount of sweetness. Vanilla comes out in the bitter-hop finish, as does warming alcohol. For me this beer feels a little lightweight for an Imperial Russian Stout. Having sampled some mindbending ones in the recent past (see review #s 26, 49, 57, 63), this one seems more prosaic and certainly more hop-accented than most. Its plenty firm in body but doesn't feature much fusel-oil fueled craziness or burnt barley acridity. Still, it is lighter in strength than many beers bearing the imperial stout title plus you get more of it than most, at 500ml.

Bakewell based brewers Thornbridge name this stout after the city in which the Romanov rulers of Russia resided from the 1600s to the Bolshevik uprising in the early 1900s. The House of Romanov, particularly Catherine the Great, loved a bit of strong stout and England duly delivered the stuff to her. We must have been friends back then. Thornbridge only came onto the scene in 2005; a collaboration between Martin Dickie (who left to form BrewDog) and Stefano Cossi. Aside from Saint Petersburg, they do a whole range of interesting craft beers worth checking out.
  • MALTS: ?
  • HOPS: ?
  • IBU: mid-high
  • ABV: 7.7%`

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