HB&B Blog — Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #98: Newtown Park x Verdant Emerging From The Mist Double IPA

Bristol Double IPA Fundamentals IPA Matthew Curtis Newtown Park

Fundamentals #98: Newtown Park x Verdant Emerging From The Mist Double IPA

A few years ago I attended a cheese tasting hosted by the ebullient Ned Palmer, author of A Cheesemonger’s History of the British Isles. It consisted of a selection of artisanal British cheeses, each deftly paired with a matching beer. The tasting first introduced me to what has become one of my favourite cheeses, Stichelton. This cheese is similar to Stilton in the way it’s made, except it uses unpasteurised milk, meaning it cannot call itself by that name. Its hallmark characteristics are a juicy flavour, held up by a light acidity, and a biscuity note that becomes more pronounced...

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Fundamentals #97 — Brasserie Dupont Saison Dupont

Belgium Brasserie Dupont Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Saison

Fundamentals #97 — Brasserie Dupont Saison Dupont

What can I possibly say about Saison Dupont that hasn’t been said a thousand times before? This is a beer of special magnificence. One that has inspired countless journeys into deeper explorations of the beverage, as well as an entire genre of beer styles. Chances are if you’ve ever tried a beer that says “rustic” or “farmhouse” on the label, you can likely trace its inspiration back to Saison Dupont in some shape or form. This is also the beer that properly introduced the word “saison” to the modern drinkers’ lexicon. The term comes from the French word for “season” and...

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Fundamentals #96 - Humbser Biere Lager Hell Naturtrüb

Fundamentals Germany Humbser Lager Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #96 - Humbser Biere Lager Hell Naturtrüb

By and large I don’t consider myself much of a seasonal drinker. When the mood takes me, I’m as happy smashing stout in the blazing sunshine as I am sipping pilsner in the depths of winter. In saying that, however, there’s something about the extending evening daylight that has me reaching into my fridge for something cold, something crispy, something that has been lagered for weeks on end. There’s a deeply satisfying aspect to finishing work while there’s still plenty of daylight left that goes so well with drinking lager, and I am eager with anticipation when I think about...

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Fundamentals #95 — Arbor Massive Azacc New England Pale Ale

Arbor Ales Bristol Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Pale ale

Fundamentals #95 — Arbor Massive Azacc New England Pale Ale

With more than 2,000 breweries in the UK alone, it can be immensely challenging keeping up with who are the latest and greatest within the beer scene. When you consider that more than half of these breweries have emerged within the last decade, keeping up with the most recent beer releases can seem even more daunting. Another unfortunate side-effect of there being such a rush of exciting new British brewing talent is that some of the breweries that emerged before this rush really gathered steam can be, on occasion, left by the wayside. This doesn’t mean the beer they’re making is any...

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Fundamentals #94 — Track Down Is The New Up New England IPA

IPA Manchester Matthew Curtis New England IPA Track Brewing Co

Fundamentals #94 — Track Down Is The New Up New England IPA

Sometimes I’ll try and convince myself that I’m bored of NEIPA. That, somehow, I’m better than it. That my taste has become too sophisticated, my palate transcending to a plane far beyond the physical realm where I sit and enjoy my crispy lagers, while leaving the proletariat to their juice. But there’s always a beer to draw me back in and remind me that when done well, like any beer style, NEIPA can be delicious. And, holy shit, this bad boy, Down is the New Up from Manchester’s Track Brew Co, ticks all the boxes. Then it grabs someone else's paper and ticks...

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