Monday, 12 January 2015

Moor Beer Company Illusion

Moor Beer Company Illusion
Style: Black IPA
Alcohol content: 4.7%
From: Pitney, Somerset, England
Purchased from: Cost cutters, Somerton

As you may be aware from reading my previous blogs, I am a big fan of the West county. My father grew up not far from Yeovil, so the culture and history of the glorious west has always been in my blood. As some of you may be aware, Yeovil town recently played Manchester United in the FA cup. Whilst they may of lost by an incredibly fine margin, the match has been able to showcase the best parts of Somerset culture; warmth and pure determination. As the area continues to recover from the horrendous floods of 2014, I truly hope that Yeovil's showing has helped brighten some very dark days. But what has this got to do with beer I hear you cry? Well this particular beer is brewed in one of the areas most affected areas.

The Moor Beer Company was formed in 1996 on a small dairy farm in Somerset. They originality started brewing beers that matched the local heritage of Somerset, but soon branched out upon the arrival of Justin and Maryann Hawke. Justin is a Californian native, and brought with him a tendency of fusing real ales with more aggressively flavoured beers from the United States. This has lead to an amazingly diverse range of mind boggling creations. As I always say, change is a good thing! Here is a review of their Black IPA aptly named Illusion.

Moor Beer Company Illusion

Colour: This beer pours a midnight black complete with a one finger high, tan coloured head. Head is tightly packed but not creamy looking. Holding the glass up to the light, you will notice a warming red run to the beer. Looks very inviting I must say.

Aroma: As soon as you pop the cap, a floral perfume of pine and a grapefruit citrus will rise to greet you from the bottle. The use of roasted malts help to add very subtle hints of chocolate and coffee. You can smell they're present, but it does not overpower the citrus notes.

Body: On your first sip you will feel a grainy texture. Personally, it's been a very long time since I have felt such a sensation so I was rather surprised by the mouth feel. Upon further investigation, I discovered that the Moor Beer company do not use finings to clarify their beers. By shunning the use of isinglass, all Moor beer are served with a hazy/unfiltered complexion, hence the gritty residuals left behind on my tongue. Naturally, this helps to add a depth to the mouth feel which you would not normally associate with a black IPA. Not the smoothest drinker on the planet but  you will get used to it.          

Taste: On your first sip bold notes of juicy grapefruit and grapes dominate from the get go. These flavours dull over time to reveal a middle fuelled by delicate notes of coffee and milk chocolate. The finish is dry and in my opinion a little rough. Here the grainy mouth feel kicks and blends a little awkwardly with the sticky, resinous hops for my tastes. Would I drink it again? Certainly, but perhaps on draft rather than in the bottle.

Moor Beer Company Illusion

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