By Iron Chef Leftovers
I have had some great cask beers, some good cask beers and some mediocre cask beers. The style of the beer almost doesn’t matter, some of the best casks I have had over the last couple of years have been non-traditional cask styles or casks with really non-traditional ingredients. Populuxe has been on a roll with putting out their Burke-Gillman Bitter in cask form – a traditional beer done in a few non-traditional ways. (I have to get around to posting the Smoked Tea Bitter review). I usually try to post my reviews in chronological order, especially for one-off beers since there is no hurry to go out and drink them. This is an exception – the latest version of the Burke-Gillman Bitter, dry hopped with Sorachi Ace and Horizon hops will be available at the Cask Festival on Saturday, March 22nd and this is one that is worth seeking out there.
The beer pours cloudy brown in color with nice notes of caramel and orange with just a hint of grassy note and very light roasted notes. For a cask beer, this one has big, complex flavors. The beer starts out with a medium caramel profile with hints of roast before the hops start to kick in. The Sorachi brings a very light herbaciousness to the party and the Horizon brings a nice orange kick and just a touch of bitterness. These notes intertwine with the caramel and remain throughout the beer all the way to the finish making for an almost hard candy like profile as they are joined with just a touch of sweetness from the malt. The finish is very long for a cask beer and is incredibly pleasant and smooth. The beer drinks extremely easily and at less than 5% ABV, it goes down way too easily, leading you to want pint after pint.
Populuxe usually does a great job with their casks, but this one may be the best one they have ever done.
Populuxe Burke-Gillman Bitter with Sorachi Ace Cask lays down its cards with a perfect 5 Royal Flushes out of 5.
Get this beer early at the Cask Festival – it is worth the experience.