Kildare-based microbrewery Trouble Brewing have just launched the third beer in their regular line-up: Sabotage IPA. This is a 5.5% ABV India Pale Ale which makes extensive use of Galaxy hops, a variety prized for its tropical fruit flavours.
Trouble was founded in 2009, originally in Allenwood, Co. Kildare. 2013 will see the brewery move to a bigger premises closer to Dublin, in the village of Kill.
The new beer joins Ór golden ale and Dark Arts porter in the Trouble line-up and will initially be available in keg and cask formats, with a bottled version to follow later in the year.
The past 12 months has been a bumper year for Irish beer. Once again, Beoir wishes to take stock of the many wonderful brews available and we need your help picking the best of the bunch.
Voting is now open for the 2013 Beer of Year: the only beer competition in which every beer brewed and sold commercially in Ireland is eligible to win, voted by the drinkers.
You'll find the full rules of the competition, and details on where to send your vote on our forum here. We've also compiled a list of every Irish beer we can think of to help jog your memory. You must be a registered member of the forum to vote, but registration is quick and free.
Edited 08/01/2013: Due to suspicious patterns in the votes received so far, we have regretfully had to restrict voting to Beoir subscribers. Votes from forum members who are not Beoir members will not be counted. These awards have always sought the maximum mandate from Irish drinkers and it is disappointing to see this integrity being abused. The voting restriction now in place, while far from ideal, will help ensure that 2013's Beer of the Year reflects a meaningful choice made independently by the drinkers of Irish beer.
Voting closes on Monday 4th February so get thinking about your top three beers and make your vote count.
For the second year in a row, Eight Degrees has a dark spiced beer called A Winter's Ale. This is 7.5% ABV and available bottled and on draught. The spices are a special blend provided by the Green Saffron spicery.
Also in its second year is Dungarvan Brewing Company's Coffee and Oatmeal Stout, this year showing off the brewery's new label design. Flahavan's has provided the oatmeal, and the coffee comes courtesy of Badger & Dodo roastery. It's 4.7% ABV and available in bottle and cask.
From Franciscan Well comes a very special Stout Aged in Jameson Whiskey Barrels. This is 7.8% ABV and available only in 1 litre bottles, though is expected to make an appearance on cask at the Franciscan Well Cask and Winter Ales Festival (15-17 February). The edition is limited to just 900 numbered bottles.
Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without White Gypsy's Yule Ól making an appearance. This dark red ale is unspiced but shows lots of warming depth. 6% ABV and available bottled.
Exclusively on draught there's Carlow Brewing Company's Winter Star. In place of the more typical Christmas spices, this 5% ABV ruby ale has coconut and orange peel added for a completely unique flavour profile.
Finally, Whitewater Brewery has launched its Christmas seasonal Sanity Claus in bottles this year, for the first time. This is 4.5% ABV and brewed with a small addition of cinnamon and nutmeg to add a little festive spirit.
All are available wherever good beer is sold in Ireland. Be warned, however, that stocks are strictly limited and supplies of some may be running short already.
Ahead of Budget 2013, Beoir has made a submission to the Department of Finance requesting a re-think on the minimum pricing issue.
As an organisation, Beoir stands behind any genuine effort to tackle problem-drinking in Ireland. However, Beoir does not back the current proposal to introduce minimum pricing as it has already been historically proven not to work and it only serves to divert efforts away from tackling the issue in a real and proactive manner.
The full text of the pre-budget submission can be found here.
The team behind award-winning Dublin pubs L. Mulligan. Grocer and W.J. Kavanagh's have recently created their own beer brand. Titled The Brown Paper Bag Project, the emphasis will be on innovation and experimentation, covering a wide range of beer styles, methods and ingredients and brewed at a variety of different breweries.
The first in the series was launched at W.J. Kavanagh's on 24th November and is a dark Belgian style ale utilising a single variety of hop called Dr. Rudi, from New Zealand, which also gives the beer its name. Brewed at the Eight Degrees brewery in Mitchelstown, Co. Cork, Dr. Rudi is 7.4% ABV and available on draught in Mulligan's and Kavanagh's, as well as in 33cl bottles.
The Brown Paper Bag Project website is currently under construction here, and the Project is also on Twitter.