I am a firm believer that there is a beer to suit all occasions. But if you were to throw me what the Americans like to call a ‘curve-ball’ and address the tricky occasion of the post Yom Kippur fast-break, you would be rewarded with high praise for a gallant effort. I, however, would not be undone. I would be equal to this weird ball throwing technique (bless them) and reply that only just moments ago…prior to breaking my fast, my fridge disappointed me not, and I found within something I had been keeping for a suitable occasion although I hadn’t worked out when that would yet be. I found tucked at the back, the kind of bottled beer that when looking at it with a guarded glance, it seems to look right back at you defiantly in a dark & broody manner and say “Blogger boy, you think can you handle me on any regular simply day of the week?”. No, I didn’t think I could was the honest answer.
This sort of attitude has become quite famous of a Dark Porter Ale over the years and to find one with big Hebrew writing across the label declaring “Midnight” below an ominous shadow type picture of a crow (a filthy avian predator) is very exciting.
It only took a moment to mull it over upstairs, and I fished it out and popped the cap. If a light lager is your tipple after a long and exhausting fast, or perhaps a cup of tea with some biscuits even, then I do not hastily judge. But for me, HADUBIM Brewery seemed to be offering me the perfect beverage for this rarest of occasions. I anticipated a smooth, mildly hoppy, very toasted malt ale, all brewed specifically in mind to fill me up with all the necessary nutrition currently lacking. I was close, but not bang on..here is what I actually got.
Lovely dark dark brown colour with a light orangy thin head which evaporated quite quickly which signified to me that I was wrong to predict a stout textured beer for a start (I had no reason to assume it, more like bad guess work).
Here is where possibly my anticipation got the better of me and the character of this burly-attitude ale justified itself, for something went wrong with the basic mechanics in my nose and rather than smelling, I snorted and a bit of a mess ensued. I don’t tell you this for your mere amusement, but to rather inform you that although unorthodox in method, it afforded me a perspective of this brew I might not else have had. Remarkably, all the build up about this being an aggressive beer was simply tosh. I got (through my nose) MILD roasted barley, honey, chocolate (not dark coca) and plenty hops.
I was not expecting to taste a cross between a pale ale, dark lager and a stout. But that’s exactly what I got all in a perfect but mild balance, with mild being the key here. Good air in it makes it very gulp-able, but the sweetness (caramel maybe?) was all pale ale-esque. The toasted malt dark flavours gave it the main overriding character and maybe that moment just as your lips touch the liquid reminded me of a stout. All very yummy.
My only constructive criticism of this effort, would be that the taste didn’t linger as long as I hoped and the after tones a little watered down. Still this is far from being a reason not to thoroughly enjoy it as much as I have.
I like to think that a 24 hour fast allows for a certain unruliness
5% Alc per 330ml