We first came across this Scottish craft lager at Harviestoun’s tap takeover of the Draft House in Seething Lane. With a plethora of Harviestoun‘s drinks available it was tough to spend enough time on a single drink to really appreciate one. Luckily for us, and through the fine generosity of Shaun – Harviestoun’s London representatives, we acquired a selection of their fine beers to spend some real time on.
Schiehallion, I must admit, is the first craft lager that I’ve really given any time. You’ll know our stance on lager by now and it was only the silver tongue and cajoling that got me to this point. So, let us begin our journey:
“Champagne of Lagers”
The nice thing about Harviestoun’s beers is the background story behind each one – keep an eye out for Bitter and Twisted (review coming soon) which has a very entertaining history – but I digress; this lager is named after a mountain and as the bottle states:
Schiehallion… brings intense reward for the sort who like to plant their flag at the top.
This sounds like a challenge, and either through bravery or stupidity, I very rarely turn down a challenge. After a little more information about the malt (wheat and lager) and a tasting note or two I am told to
…unstrap your knapsack, find a comfy boulder and pour out some pure, premium pluck.
Now finding a comfortable boulder might be a bit of a challenge, so I’ll settle for my desk chair, but pouring some premium pluck I can perform.
I apologise, but the ‘p’s are really pleasing me right now. Anyway, my palate is also pleased with this cheeky little lager. It smells soft and vivacious. Like Marilyn Monroe, supple and elegant, balanced with a bit of fizz. It pours pale, like a typical premium lager, and has an equally typical head – energetic bubbles that die down quite quickly with a fair amount lacing. But, thankfully, it does not taste like that premium puddle plonk. It’s initially sweet and fruity, the grapefruit washing over in a very refreshing ticking-the-tastebuds sort of way.
It’s like an early spring morning as your bare feet hit the dew on freshly cut grass, it’s light – brilliant but cooling sunlight dancing across your deprived tongue. The elegance of the smell is carried through in the balanced, crisp flavours that layer through the drink, ending with a slightly dry finish that leaves you wanting more… and more … and, well, you get the picture.
Now if only we could could get all the Carlsberg lads and Stella boys onto something like this – that could easily fix Broken Britain.