Before we begin I want to do a little exercise. Gather all of your thoughts about BrewDog. Collect every last iota of opinion you hold for or against the Scottish brewer. Regardless of whether this newly formed mass of consciousness is mostly fanaticism, ambivalence or spite, I want you to place it in a box, seal it and push it to one side.
All done? Good. Finally, take a few deep, audible breaths, sit back and relax. Now you can concentrate on enjoying BrewDog for what they’re best at: making beer.
I’d imagine that you’re already familiar with BrewDog’s core range of beers. After all, its flagship, Punk IPA, sits resplendent on supermarket shelves across the length and breadth of this fair land.
As solid as BrewDog’s core range of beers is, the real highlights for me recently have been its special releases. Born To Die, a limited release double IPA was my beer of the year and Black Eyed King Imp was one of the best barrel aged imperial stouts I’ve seen come out of a UK brewery. Its latest release; a rye IPA ridiculously named Albino Squid Assassin easily ranks among them.
Squiddie, as I’ve affectionately begun to refer to it, pours a satisfyingly russet shade of red with a rocky off-white head. It absolutely stinks of American hops with tangerine, pink grapefruit and candyfloss aromas fighting for your attention. Squiddie is loaded with citrus flavours that are balanced out with a sweet, white pepper spiciness and just the right amount of sweetness to stop it from becoming cloying. It’s one of the most accomplished beers BrewDog have produced to date.
It doesn’t even look like a BrewDog beer thanks to some great design from artist Joe Wilson that adorns the can. I still have no idea why it’s called Albino Squid Assassin though.
You can find more from beer writer Matthew Curtis at his excellent beer blog, Total Ales, and Good Beer Hunting, and on Twitter @totalcurtis.