Monday, 11 May 2009

Packing Flavour In



While out shopping with E in Manchester on Saturday, we nipped into the Micro Bar in the Arndale for a much needed refresher. The only pale beer was a horrible example of random phenols, roughly hewn into an approximation of beer, which had E grimacing and me advising her not to drink it. She didn't actually need that advice, as her mind was rapidly made up on that point. My choice was wiser, though a bit of a tongue twister. Brewdog "How to Dissappear Completely" was the odd name given to a very good beer. Chestnut brown in colour and despite an initially off-putting wet dog aroma, the beer itself was very enjoyable and intensely bitter, with C hops in abundance and a very full body for its strength - a mere 3.5%. My first half was rapidly followed by a second and then a pint, while E consoled herself with Kuppers Koelsch. It was good to see Brewdog using their undoubted skills at the weaker end of the spectrum.

We sat for half an hour or so, sipping beer and watching the astonishingly mixed international clientèle eating ethnic snacks (the Brazilian stuff looked really good). Great for beer, great for people watching, it's a good place. Go there if you can.

The horrible beer was Empire Brewing Shiver Me Timbers

17 comments:

coach_mcguirk said...

Determined to make it up there for the first time in years soon. Microbar right up there for places to visit.

Love the sound of this Brewdog. "How To Disappear Completely" is a Radiohead song, incidentally.

Tandleman said...

Ah. Some kind of musical ensemble?

Jeff Pickthall said...

Tell me: is Micro Bar the proper name of the establishment or just a name you've given it?

Tandleman said...

Eh? Do you doubt it in some way? Well I haven't actually inquired,, but if you look at the picture in the initial article I wrote about it, you'll see the name "Micro Bar" on the beer menu.

I guess that's its real name as there are two other signs there with that same name on them.

Jeff Pickthall said...

I ask because that's the name of the fine establishment I brought into being in 2001. I'm not sure its current owners would take to kindly to another one popping up under the same name.

Ed said...

I think I'll have to give 'how to dissappear completely' a go now. The thought of a mild with 198 (theoretical) IBUs didn't appeal as it sounded very wrong but I guess I should give it a go before passing judgement.

Philip said...

It's tasty but it's also a bit weak.

Tandleman said...

Jeff. Good job they didn't call it the Red Lion then.

Ed - 198 IBU? It was bitter, but 198?

Jeff Pickthall said...

I expect the first bloke to call his alehouse the Red Lion was bloody furious when loads copied him.

John said...

Some kind of musical ensemble?They're a popular beat combo from the hit parade!

Mark said...

I'm really looking forward to trying this beer. It has a theoretical 198IBUs, brewed with centennial and columbus. Glad to hear it's got some decent body to it!

Graeme said...

It won't be 198IBUs - apparently Pliny the Elder is theoretically 260-odd IBU, but it comes out more like 100IBU. I think there's a solubility issue and you just can't get any more alpha acids into the beer, though you'll probably still get other flavours from all the hops in there from the other oils, etc.

Sounds good though - will have to keep an eye out for it at any big festivals I can get to...

Tommy N said...

I guess when they say theoretical, they may mean if hop utilisation equals 100%. This is impossible. Most breweries work on 25-35% so it’s possibly got 70 odd IBU, which is still unbelievably bitter for a 3.5% beer. But this is Brew Dog so it probably has got 198IBU.

Paul Garrard said...

People watching - a great pastime whilst drink a beer!

Joel said...

As to "How to disappear completely," yes, it is the title of a Radiohead song, but I suspect the lads got it from a book entitled "How to Disappear Completely and Never Be Found," published 30 or so years ago. It was a sort of "how-to" text on going underground. It had some minor fame in certain circles in its day.

Cheers, Peter. Wish I could have been there to have a pint with you two. My best to E.

ChrisM said...

Nope, according to this article the name comes from the Radiohead song!

For those of you in the North East (or willing to travel!) the Bacchus in Newcastle is holding a Brewdog beer and food matching festival weekend over the next bank holiday, featuring 8 cask Brewdog beers, including How to disappear completely...

Joel said...

Yes, the beer name comes from the song. My point was that the song name most likely came from the book, which preceded the song by at least a decade.