You know that feeling when you take one look at something and know instantly that it just isn’t for you? You might be missing out on something, but there is a tiny sense of liberation when you realise that you can now devote your time, effort and brain cells to other pursuits.
Things that I have written off include: chewing gum, Game of Thrones, team sports, beetroot, cars, fancy dress and beards. I stress that whilst I see value in all these*, I just cannot muster up any enthusiasm for them and would rather leave them for a more appreciative audience.
So when I first caught sight of the inaugural beers from Aberdeen’s newest brewery I was happy to dismiss them out of hand. The Fierce beers are proudly, aggressively, loud, “cool” and (in my opinion) a bit stupid looking.
My toes curled as I took in the “edgy” beer names, distressed typography and violent, punky artwork. Many new breweries look to emulate Brewdog’s marketing strategy without having the brewing expertise to back it up and I simply assumed that Fierce were another of these “all mouth and no trousers” operations.
I was wrong though. Despite my initial misgivings, I have to say that Fierce are brewing some really impressive beer: Beers that sit bang in the centre of the Venn diagram marked experimental, affordable and drinkable. We’ve had them in store for a month now and I’ve drunk & enjoyed enough of the stuff to forgive them for the gauche labels.
Best of a generally excellent bunch is the Peanut Riot, a chunky little porter augmented with a handful of salted peanuts.
It looks like a standard porter in the glass; murky black body, with a modest, tanned leather head. The nose has a really attractive (honest!) bouquet of leaf mulch and Reeses Pieces. It’s a full bodied, punchy beer with an oily, savoury, umami-rich mouthfeel and a lengthy finish. It’s a more serious porter than it’s label implies and a weightier beer than it’s 6.5% abv suggests.
It makes for a very satisfying postprandial digestif and at less than £3 a bottle it’s quite keenly priced
Fierce deserve a bucketful of credit for brewing it and some other really accomplished, interesting beers, that transcends the Shoreditch friendly branding.
*except beetroot. That can get tae fuck