I happened upon some German beers I hadn't had before last month. Unlike most of the German beers we get in Ireland, these are going for the more modern styles we have become accustomed to rather than the more traditional German styles. It seems that Crew might be a gypsy brewery or just getting it contract brewed/brewing themselves at the Hohenthanner Brewery.
|Crew - Pale Ale|
The Pale Ale seemed to be going for the English style more than the American style, or perhaps a mix of both but leaning more towards its European neighbour in feel. On the nose, a rye crispbread followed by pithy orange which translated in to the taste. I thought it was quite spicy for a pale ale.
It's a rather good beer, easy to drink and well balanced. I enjoyed it immensely.
|Crew - IPA|
The IPA was a little odd I thought. It's a hybrid American style IPA perhaps. A slightly winey backbone and certainly leading more to the sweet end of the scale than the bitter. Orange pith somewhat dominated what is an interesting IPA. I found it somewhat metallic at times. I wouldn't seek this one out again, but I certainly wouldn't turn it down either.
Now that my tasting notes are out of the way, I can tell you that my opinion about them was a little wrong so you can pretty much ignore what I said, sorry about that and thanks for reading this far. For a start, I thought at the time that they were going for an English Pale Ale and some sort of hybrid IPA. Since I'm only now writing the article a month later, after a little research I found they are very clearly going for a new world feel. The hops used are a mix of German, US and New Zealand hops. Not an English variety in sight.
So, I suspect that the bottles I got had been sitting in that off license for a while and the hop character was lost over time.
Overall, they are good beers and worth trying if you see them. I would love to try them fresh and see if they are better. I would love to see a bottled on date being made mandatory on all beers, especially hop forward ones.