A couple of fun things are happening for Jenn and I in the next few weeks. Saturday is our wedding anniversary, on which we’ll head to our local cinemas (which has a bar that sells local craft beer for consumption during the movie!) to see the final installment in the Wright/Pegg/Frost “Three Flavours Cornetto” trilogy, The World’s End. After that, we’re heading overseas to New Zealand for the first time to attend the Beervana beer festival in Wellington.
As big fans of Simon Pegg’s and Nick Frost’s work, especially through Spaced, Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, the pending screening of The World’s End is a hyperbole of UK-comedy-geeky exciting. In anticipation of it, tonight we are rewatching the first movie from the nerdy trio, the best zombie comedy ever made, Shaun of the Dead.
To match, we’ve poured an appropriate beer from our next destination, New Zealand.
For the last couple of years, the Beervana festival has been attracting an increasing pilgrimage of Aussie brewers, beer geeks and beer tourists due to many glowing reports from previous attendees of great beer and good times. This year it’s our turn to join the herd of Australians crossing the Tasman sea for Beervana, thanks in part to my media gig with Australian Brews News.
So tonight, alongside watching Shaun of the Dead on bluray, our #IPADay beer of choice is the very popular Double IPA from EPIC Brewing, Hop Zombie.
EPIC is quite well known for their portfolio of hop-centric beers, mostly in the form of various IPAs, from Mayhem IPA to Armageddon IPA.
In 2011 Hop Zombie turned the EPIC hop hit up to MONSTER, making big waves of hype across the Melbourne craft beer scene and selling out very quickly when it was first released here. Hop Zombie’s massive hop profile was still something of a novelty on the local market at that stage.
The beer then disappeared from bottleshop shelves for over a year due to a hop shortage, but it is now back in fairly regular stock around town.
Tonight we cracked a bottle from a batch brewed in 2012, which has been sitting in my cold and dark “beer cellar” cupboard for around six months.
Pouring Hop Zombie from it’s 500ml bottle into a Spiegleau snifter glass, the appearance is crystal clear and golden. It has a beautiful shine that is quite impressive in its clarity. A small white head disperses fairly quickly.
The aroma is smooth yet robust, full of stone fruits like melon, plus plenty of passionfruit, with notes of orange.
The flavour is dense and well rounded, continuing the robustness of dense citrus fruits.
Hop Zombie’s body is full but not thick, sitting very nicely in the mouth. The carbonation is great, providing a crispness that makes the beer far too easy to drink.
I found the 8.5% abv to be undetectable on the nose or in the mouth.
This beer beguiles its monster status. At first, through its appearance , Hop Zombie quite delicate and refined. But give it a moment, because then it packs a punch. A killer punch!
This is a slow beer that comes to life moments after you’ve smashed it. It then finishes you off with a long, alcoholic and fruity hoppy stabbing of the head and belly. Fun shit! Wanting more now…even though I can feel it’s danger.
Wonderful beer. Excellent IPA. Groovy.