HB&B Blog — Scotland

The Beer Lover's Table: Tteokbokki à la Vodka and Donzoko Super King Smoked Helles

Beer Lover's Table Claire Bullen Donzoko Lager Scotland Smoked beer

The Beer Lover's Table: Tteokbokki à la Vodka and Donzoko Super King Smoked Helles

You can take the girl out of the Mid-Atlantic, but you can’t take the Mid-Atlantic out of the girl. It’s been more than 10 years since I relocated to London from New York (and before that, Philadelphia) and I still have not lost my love for vodka sauce – a staple of East Coast Italian-American cooking, sometimes known as “pink sauce” owing to the fact that it’s made with a base of both tomato and cream. Recipes vary widely, but – true to name – most are made with an enlivening shot of vodka. As much as I love making classic...

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Fundamentals #132 - Newbarns x Omnipollo Complicated Dark Beer

Fundamentals Imperial Stout Matthew Curtis Newbarns Omnipollo Scotland Stout

Fundamentals #132 - Newbarns x Omnipollo Complicated  Dark Beer

If you think of classic styles like mild, bitter or even an old-school West Coast IPA, malt plays a key role. However, as craft brewers increasingly seek to experiment with alternative ingredients – such as fruit, vanilla, chocolate or coffee beans – the flavour and character that malt gives a beer has increasingly slinked into the background. In terms of dark beers – where malt forms the central identity of the style – this has come to a point where artificial flavourings now play an increasingly vocal role in styles like pastry stout. I’m not against experimentation and try not to dump on other people’s...

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The Beer Lover's Table: Thai-Style Peanut Curry with Soy-Seared Tofu and Newbarns Brewery Deluxe Lagered Porter

Beer Lover's Table Claire Bullen Newbarns Porter Scotland

The Beer Lover's Table: Thai-Style Peanut Curry with Soy-Seared Tofu and Newbarns Brewery Deluxe Lagered Porter

The clock going back happens every year, but the speed at which night encroaches still comes as a shock. Dark at 5? Dark at 4:30? Yes, and it will get worse. But I’ve found a bright side: With every minute of daylight that’s devoured, so my desire for dark beer ratchets up. Newbarns Brewery’s Deluxe Lagered Porter – a lower-strength Baltic porter by any other name – feels just right for this annual descent, so right that it hardly feels like a loss at all. Made with heritage Chevallier malt, this beer is roasty and robust, but without heaviness – aromas...

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The Beer Lover's Table: Roast Salmon with Spring Vegetables and Wild Garlic Aioli and Donzoko Noble Fabric Export Lager

Beer Lover's Table Claire Bullen Donzoko Lager Scotland

The Beer Lover's Table: Roast Salmon with Spring Vegetables and Wild Garlic Aioli and Donzoko Noble Fabric Export Lager

Recently, I visited a greengrocer to pick up some basics. I found myself lingering over the vegetables, feeling covetous: the ruby bunches of radishes, the broad beans swelling in their pods, the fat leaves of lemony sorrel, the unfurling buds of purple-sprouting broccoli… It had been a while since I’d felt so lusty over a bunch of veg, but this time of year has a way of reminding you how exciting all things new and green and crunchy can be. I’ll give part of the credit as well to a recent meal I enjoyed at 40 Maltby Street (shared with friends, including fellow...

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Fundamentals #119 - Holy Goat Dragonaut Tropical Sour

Brett Fundamentals Holy Goat Matthew Curtis Scotland Sour

Fundamentals #119 - Holy Goat Dragonaut Tropical Sour

Serious question: where have all the brett beers been hiding? Time was, about six or seven years ago, that you couldn’t move for small breweries releasing their latest bretted beer (whether this was intentionally so is anyone’s guess). More recently though, it feels like the yeast strain has fallen out of vogue, giving up its dwindling share of the limelight to more fashionable cultures, such as kveik. But what exactly is brett – or brettanomyces, to use its full name? Well, the clue begins in the name, with “brettano” meaning British and “myces” meaning yeast. According to various online resources...

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