HB&B Blog — Fundamentals

Fundamentals #74 — Double-Barrelled The Big Fruit Heist Fruited Kettle Sour

Double Barrelled Brewery Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Reading Sour

Fundamentals #74 — Double-Barrelled The Big Fruit Heist Fruited Kettle Sour

What’s in a name? For many producers of our favourite food and drink, from the winemakers of the French provinces to the cheese-makers of Italy, nomenclature is power. Try calling something you make Champagne (that isn’t) for example, and you’ll soon find yourself getting a politely worded letter from the Institut National de l’Origine et de la Qualité. Thanks to the appellation granted upon this particular genre of wine in 1927, designed to combat what its producers saw as fraud, only wines grown and produced in this region are allowed the designation. But this kind of appellation doesn’t really exist...

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Fundamentals #73 — The Beak Brewery Parade IPA

Fundamentals IPA Matthew Curtis Sussex The Beak Brewery

Fundamentals #73 —  The Beak Brewery Parade IPA

If the Beak Brewery isn’t on your radar yet then it should be, as it’s one of the most exciting breweries that will be opening its doors in 2020. Finally, some good news! I hear you cry. For regular readers of this column, that name may sound familiar, and that’s because I’ve reviewed Beak before, way back in July 2018. Back then owner Daniel Tapper was contract brewing to get his tasty beer out into the world, and that’s true in this case as well, as this beer was made by his friends at Burning Sky (you might have heard...

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Fundamentals #72 — FrauGruber Velvet Horizon Pale Ale

FrauGruber Brewing Fundamentals Germany Matthew Curtis Pale ale

Fundamentals #72 — FrauGruber Velvet Horizon Pale Ale

About a decade or so ago I was really into wheat beers for a brief time. I remember going on a business trip to Frankfurt during my previous career of musical instrument sales and tucking into glass after glass of Schöfferhofer after hours of walking the giant trade halls at the city’s Messe auditorium. There were only two choices in most places we went to anyway, lager or wheat beer, and with most of my colleagues drinking lager, the latter always felt like the most subversive thing to order. I never could resist being the odd one out. Back at...

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Fundamentals #71 — Howling Hops Shout Mode Kveik DIPA

DIPA Fundamentals Hackney Howling Hops Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #71 — Howling Hops Shout Mode Kveik DIPA

It’s been a while since I fell head over heels for a hazy DIPA. Thankfully, this juicy number from East London outfit Howling Hops had little rosy hearts fluttering past the centre of my gaze from the very first sip until the last. A couple of things work well really in this beer. The hop combination for starters – while featuring the omnipresent marriage of Citra and Mosaic, it also features Simcoe, a hop that’s long been a favourite of mine, which I feel has fallen a little out of favour in recent times. These hop varieties provide a lot...

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Fundamentals #70 — Boxcar English Porter

Boxcar Brew Co East London Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Porter

Fundamentals #70 — Boxcar English Porter

It’s fun to watch Boxcar’s head Brewer Sam Dickison work. He exudes a zen-like calm, even when his situation becomes a little more stressful. Arriving at the taproom one Friday early in 2020, I witnessed Sam under slightly more duress than usual. He was brewing with an experimental dark malt from Simpson’s, one of the UK’s largest and most well-regarded malt producers. Called Roast 200, it’s meant to produce a beer deep brown in colour, full of roasted coffee flavours and aromas, but the brew was taking a bit longer than it should. Malt is in a fascinating place at...

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