17 June 2020

Jack Brand’s Cucumelon Sour (Tesco) By @SpectreUK

Jack Brand’s Cucumelon Sour

Whilst my side of the Foodstufffinds' Snack Cupboard (we're still trying to come up with a catchier name) is running almost of empty, with only three boxes of weird flavoured tea and a grim looking protein bar (I've been avoiding) left somewhere near the back (… I just keep pushing the protein bar further away hoping it will fall off the other end of the planet), fortunately my beer fridge is still looking pretty full (and I drink a lot of that… it just that Cinabar keeps topping it up in order to sustain my inebriation… it's just an easier life all round!).

So huzzah for beer! Although this Cucumelon Sour does sound like something I should also be avoiding, even if it has been produced by one of my favourite breweries (you'll find I have lots of those), Adnams, Southwold in Suffolk. At 4% volume this Cucumelon Sour was produced in the style of 'Kettle Sour'. "So what's Kettle Sour?" I hear some of you ask… I simply have no idea… one of the many brands of popular search engines (Google) tells me; "Instead of a traditional mash, kettle sours undergo a "sour mash." Basically, instead of boiling the beer-to-be and then cooling it to ready it for yeast, the liquid is boiled, cooled, and lacto-dosed. This wort mixture then chills (literally) for a few days in the "kettle" while the liquid sours." That sounds like something I really should avoid!

Apparently this Cucumelon Sour was produced with Huell Melon hops, which I haven't tasted before, and lager malt, which I have tasted (and burped) plenty. Lactic acid bacteria was added in the brewing (because Google told me so…) and also Cucumber extract (I have no idea why… "pretentious moi?"). On opening the (pretty much glow-in-the-dark) can there was a light crisp sour aroma of hops and lager malt with the merest hint of yeast. On pouring this golden and excitably bubbly beer there was more of an earthy smell to it I hadn't experienced before. Not to be put off (well, almost) I took a swig…

Yep, this is a sour beer… SOUR… not unpleasantly so, but sour nonetheless. To say it's an acquired taste is possibly the best way to put it, as I can't completely describe just what Jack Brand's Cucumelon Sour actually tastes like. The trouble is the added cucumber… well, and perhaps also the hops and the way it was brewed, but anyway… suffice to say it tastes a little bit like what you may expect fermented pond slime would taste like. Clean crisp fermented pond slime brewed with cucumber, not that brown gooey bin-juice slime you may see in unfiltered ponds. So that's why the can is such a weird colour!

There isn't much in the way of lager malt in the flavour, more like a recently expired goldfish. It's bizarrely moreish, and I mean that… No really! Sometimes I say that just to be polite and very occasionally pour the rest of the beer away after a few more inquisitive mouthfuls, but here and now I'm actually going to, (punish myself for some ungodly act in my past I just can't think of right now and…) yes, actually drink the rest of the can. Okay… I may be lying!

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