Sirencraft are another new British Microbrewery and, unusally, they’ve managed to get themselves stocked by Marks and Spencer (M&S).
I’ve written before about M&S (and there’s more info here), particularly with regard to their commissioning brews from Meantime. They’ve also commissioned a range of ‘Brewed in Britain’ beers that I will endeavour to investigate.
So, to Sirencraft, who are based in Finchampstead, in Berkshire, to the West of London. Their website is a little cryptic as to their history, but the brewery took shape during 2012.
They cite Brewdog, Thornbridge, Magic Rock and The Kernel breweries as inspiration, so that sounds positive.
In 2014 (again, according the their website) Ratebeer.com voted them the ‘Best New Brewery in England’ and ‘2nd Best Brewery in the World‘.
To quote their website “Our desire is to discover ways to excite people’s curiosity and share our knowledge of our craft. We believe all beer drinkers should be able to enjoy craft beer as wine drinkers enjoy the finest wines.“.
Sounds good, bring on the beer:
Soundwave West Coast IPA 5.6% ABV
The brewery describe this as: “A 5.6% west coast IPA: golden, immensely hoppy and alive with grapefruit, peach and mango flavours.
Soundwave carries her drinker to the west coast, to the golden shores of California where craft ale is nectar. She is the driest of Siren’s ales – full with flavour but subtle with bitterness.”
It pours a pale, summery gold, almost hazy, with a reluctant white head.
The nose is as promised, with peach and mango to the fore, and grapefruit lurking behind.
The flavour is as described as well, no hyperbole and no disappointment. It is indeed very dry and bitter, but those citrus hops moderate the dry bitterness.
Underpinning all that hoppiness is a biscuity malt base and final flourish of pine resin.
And I guess some clarification is required for our readers in the (ahem) Colonies.
We Brits have started to embrace the American style of cookies, but over here biscuits are, I guess, similar to American ‘graham crackers’. In as much as where American cooks make cheesecake bases with graham crackers, we Brits crush digestive biscuits.
It occurred to me that for some time I’ve described beers as having ‘biscuity’ flavours without defining ‘biscuity’.
Sorry ’bout that!
Anyway, back to Soundwave, this is a really enjoyable brew, an excellent example of a ‘West Coast IPA’, and I’ve enjoyed some very, very good ones.
The brewery suggest, using their Siren analogy “Her resinous finish will pull you off balance.”
At 5.6% ABV, it’s in the mid-range for a’West Coast IPA’ not too potent, but hardly a session brew.
That said, I wished I’d bought a second bottle.
I won’t make that mistake again, it’s great West Coast IPA and worthy of five Brewclub Stars.