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A game of 4 quarters....and 3 IPA's

It's been a pretty emotional time in this house over the weekend - my beloved Richmond Tigers made the AFL Grand Final (something that hasn't happened in the last 35 years.) What made it even better was that they really sunk the boots into the Adelaide Crows, won in spectacular style and I got to enjoy three knock out beers in the process!


Win win all around really!


IPA 1 BEFORE THE GAME - LITTLE CREATURES IPA

Grand final day for me started at 4:45am with a McDonald's drive through coffee, a plate of pikelets my wife cooked for me the night before, a cruise into work and 6 hours on air talking about traffic jams, sunshine and how much I was looking forward to seeing the Tigers dominate. As soon as I was done at the studio it was back in the wagon and a wrestle with traffic to get home, fire up the BBQ to craft up some Angus beef hot dogs with onion for the family and slip into my first brew of the afternoon with plenty of time to spare before the first bounce.

Fry my pretties, fry!


So what am I smelling here?: A very slight wave of something herby and earthy.

What am I tasting here?: A nice balanced earthy brew with really lovely chocolately bitter end note that lingers for a bit. Very well done.

Initial thoughts: I probably should have started with the Session IPA as it was the lowest in alcohol and with me having both barely any sleep nor breakfast and tucking into this monster 6.8% brew, it did hit me like a freight train. But one wrapped in velvet. It's very smooth.

How did it go with the Angus beef homemade hot dogs?: Deliciously well. Wish I had another one.

Overall: While it's nowhere near as sweet as the Fig Jam or the Pirate Life version third on today's card, it's got that lovely balance of bitterness and flavor. It's robust, earthy and as soon as I finished it I was longing for the next one. Thankfully I only had one otherwise I might have ended up under the BBQ for the rest of the afternoon and well and truly missed the match.

4.5 out of 5 home made hot dogs.



IPA 2 HALF TIME - PIRATE LIFE THROWBACK IPA

C'Mon dusty!!


At this stage with only a handful of points between the two teams, my heart was starting to feel like it had spent the last 22 hours enjoy a relaxing bath in a bucket of double strength espresso. I haven't been this anxious since I put in my last tax return. Talk about antsy - I needed a sedative which meant racing to the fridge for the first of the two pirates..


I do like the theory behind this one - you want a tasty IPA but you don't want to be knocked on your rear end after enjoying a couple or a few in quick succession. Enter the Throwback with it's reduced Alcohol By Volume.

The problem I had here was that I was following up a full bore version with a stripped back one (and then eventually moving back to another full bore brew) could this still hold up under pressure?

Did I enjoy it with more homemade hog dogs?: Nah chips and nuts. Thanks Donna! 

What am I smelling here?: Herbs and slight pine. Citrus towards the end when it really warmed up.

Initial thoughts: Fluffy lacey head and far better in some kind of drinking implement instead of straight from the can. It gave it a decent chance to open up and soften up the previous hard edge at the end.

Overall: Not bad. As mentioned a few seconds ago I really should have started off with this one and then moved up to the Little Creatures as it's a decent entry into IPA's without having to work out where your pants went after one too many. It's very drinkable by itself but with the reduced alcohol and sweetness, it lacks the flavors to take on either it's big brother or other full bore IPAS in the 2000m tasty stakes. Apart from the price, I'm really starting to enjoy the efforts the Pirate Life Buccaneers are putting into their work.
 
3.5 out of 5 half time entertainment.


IPA 3 GAME OVER: PIRATE LIFE IPA

While the first half was agonizing, the second half was demoralizing...for Adelaide supporters. I have no idea what was said in the change rooms during the half time break but it worked as a fierce and fired up bunch of tigers raced out and ran riot for the rest of the game.

Well done champs!

And when the final siren blew and the entire township of Victoria got into party mode, I did too with a full blooded pirate.

Yarrrgh!

So was it a feast of nuts and chips with this one?: Nay matey, I mean no, it was a batch of my finest spaghetti bolognaise. I had originally planned to cook pork rashers in my deliriously happy state but my almost 3 year old daughter over ruled that idea when my wife gave her the suggestion of pork or pasta. Thanks Sophie!

Final IPA of the day, what scents am I getting from this one?: Tropical fruits and a whiff of caramel.

Initial thoughts: A little less lacey head than it's baby brother and a close orange color to it. Really getting some warm caramel and toffee notes in here with a bit of a zesty finish. The sweetest of the three.

Overall: Another fine effort from the hearty Pirate Crew. The sweetness is up there with the Fig Jam but the flavors aren't as dominating here. It also doesn't feel as strong in effect even though it shares the same ABV as the Little Creatures. Still there's a bit more going on here than the session Throwback and it's a decent example.

Overall: 4 out of 5 ticker tape parades.

AND THE WINNER IS?

Well the mighty Richmond Tigers of course (a shout out to the Adelaide team who I heard got stuck at the airport due to some plane dramas. Poor guys, after what happened I'm sure all they wanted to do was go home..) But in the IPA stakes the Little Creatures came out on points. If you like your IPAs with more sweetness though, go with the Pirate Life IPA.

Right, now when does footy season start again?

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