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The Unpleasant Moblog Of Spank The Monkey

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Another part of the Spank The Monkey media empire: offending your brain at The Unpleasant Lair Of Spank The Monkey, offending your ears at Spank's Audio Lair, and offending your eyes right here, right now.

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"Venue 4 for #CollabFest2014: @BrewDogShepBush"

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And so after a brief pause for a fortifying curry, we wrap up with the Northern beers, which to be honest we've been saving till the end because they're the most interesting-sounding. From left to right:

1. Ilkley/Leeds - Westwood Stout (6.5%, white chocolate stout). The BBG was cursing the bar staff when she brought this over, insisting 'that's not a stout' and convinced they were fobbing her off with the wrong beer. But this is definitely white chocolate in beer form, though visually closer to an IPA. Even for a white stout (and we've seen the odd one or two) it's incredibly pale. Rather nice to drink, however, though probably part of that's down to the cognitive dissonance between the look and the taste.

2. Ticketybrew/Manchester - Coffee Wit (5.2%, coffee infused wheat beer). First taste - definitely wheat beer, no real trace of the advertised coffee, though that might be down to the aftertaste of the chocolate from the Ilkley. Subsequently it's coming through, but very faintly. Quite a nice wheat beer, lacking the sourness of others, but not much else beyond that.

3. Tyne Bank/Newcastle - Amba Necta (6.5%, honey and apricot amber ale). Less fruity than the other fruit offerings of the day, and more obviously a beer than some of the borderline alcopops elsewhere in this fest. The apricot's subtle but there, the honey less obviously so: the BBG suggests the latter is rounding out the flavour rather than providing flavour itself, whereas I found it coming through as a very distant aftertaste.

4. Red Willow/Sheffield - Shut Up Meg (7.0%, double IPA). As the BBG notes, every other beer has had weird ingredients or peculiar processes involved in its making: Shut Up Meg is the only one that appears to be a traditional beer style with no funny business. But as double IPAs go, it's a gloriously hoppy bastard, and a great one to finish off the day. It doesn't feel aggressively boozy, but there's definitely some sort of kick in there.

'London wins overall,' says the BBG overall, and I have to reluctantly agree her, though the first and last of the northern beers put up a good fight by comparison. The 5 Points was probably our joint favourite: I'd bagsy the Red Willow if it ever came up in a bar again, while the BBG would plump for Wild Beer's Rosa Canina.

And hey, look, I can still spell after 16 beers! I think.
25th Oct 2014, 22:38