I have been seeing the TV ads for Old Speckled Hen recently and to be honest, I did not even know it was a beer ad for a long time as I thought it was a Scotch. I recently found a bottle of the stuff in my old mans off license (The old stand) in Mullingar. One bottle left so I bought it along with some other beer. It pours a crystal clear amber and the nose is very malty and fruity.
In the mouth I got some vanilla, perhaps toffee, a little peppery and quite creamy feeling. It also had an obvious copper aftertaste. I have to say I enjoyed this beer. Whether or not I got a bottle of beer in prime condition is hard to say as there was no best before date on the bottle, the bottle was quite dusty, it was the last one and of course the old stand has a habit of having out of date beer and of course there is the clear bottle. Still, its a good beer and I would like to try it again from a fresher source perhaps.
So what is a Grand Cru? I ask myself and I have no Idea as this is the first time I had ever had one. This is Rodenbach Grand Cru and if this was any example, it appears a Grand cru is similar to a lambic, at least in taste as it is not a lambic at all. It smells of brown sugar and sherbet, tastes like vinegar and sherbet so is basically as sour as a lambic but not as harsh. I found myself enjoying this and I think that like a lambic, this is an acquired taste. I will look out for some more of this. Sour though is the one word I can use to describe it but there is a lot more going on I could not pick out. After a few more I am sure will appreciate it more.
I am pretty sure I had Primator Dark while in Prague last time. Al over on fuggled can confirm that though. Anyway to the beer. It smells like it is malty and sweet and it also tastes malty and sweet. There is a little chocolate and some sort of fruit, like prunes to me but could easily be some other dried fruit. It is quite tasty and far sweeter than you would expect from a dark beer.