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Poppyland “On the Edge” Dry Hopped Saisons

3 Jan

Poppyland
Poppyland is a new brewery in Cromer, Norfolk, which started up in the summer of 2012. Though still quite a small establishment, the brewer, a Geologist (or should I say former Geologist now he’s brewing?) named Martin, has produced some excellent looking beers. Luckily for me I have been able to get my mits on two of them! They are both of the saison style, a popular Belgian type of beer usually made from pale malts and fruity yet dry hops, brought together with earthy and tart yeast. One of my favourite styles as they are normally thirst-quenching served cold, so perfect for the summer months. A superb example of the style is Saison Dupont, available all over the place. Now, let’s get drinking!

Beer #1 – “On the Edge” Dry-hopped with Cascade and Hallertau-Hersbrucker
On the Edge #1
This beer is quite unusual for a saison, being dry-hopped at the end of the brewing process. The two different hops used are Cascade, perhaps the most famous American hop, and Hallertau-Hersbrucker. Cascade is a variety from Western America, which should give it a nice and big hop punch, akin to that of American IPAs, while Hallertau-Hersbrucker hops are from Bavaria in Germany. These should be slightly more subtle, adding to the bitterness while developing a less aggresive fresh and floral aspect. Now, onto the good part: the tasting!

Pours a light amber colour, with an excellent head and great lacing. Smells very fresh and grassy, with maybe a hint of sweetness, possibly honey. Tastes quite light, fresh and flowery at first, with the hops building up in bitterness and coming through quite intensely at the end, along with a hit of booze, also increasing the texture of the beer, making it feel a bit fuller. Fairly dry though not unpleasantly. Lovely stuff.

Beer #2 – “On the Edge” Dry-hopped with Bobek

Again, this one is dry-hopped, this time with Bobek, a Slovenian varity of hop. Bobek hops are apparantly “mild, excellent, coupelet (sic) with moderate bitterness”, so I’m expecting quite a reduced hop presence, principally due to the absence of the Cascade in this one.

The pour is pretty much the same as before in colour, with a significantly reduced head, though still retaining good lacing. Smells quite sweet and fresh, with a hint of nuttiness. The sweetness is almost fruity. The taste is more subtle and subdued than before, with much less bitterness on the finish, as well as lacking the thicker mouthfeel and some of the dryness. There is still a lingering, pleasant bittersweet taste on the palette after the swallow. This beer also has a bit more of a malt presence, with a subtle caramel sweetness coming through. Finally, worth a mention is how this beer has an insane level of drinkability. It’s thirst quenching yet flavourful and balanced. I hope it’s still for sale when it gets warmer!

Poppylands beers can be purchased from beautifulbeers.co.uk.¬†Whilst fairly pricey, it’s definitely worth a go. Read more about the Poppylands Brewery at their website, as well as the brewers own blog.