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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #13

Thanks for the votes, everyone.

The reason I ask is that I recently did a blind tasting of Irish craft beers: mostly core-range sort of stuff, the kind of thing I'd rarely buy myself but are probably the breweries' bread and butter, and a good four or five of the beers were technical wrong'uns: diacetyl, acetylaldehide and the like, and most of the rest were just rather nondescript versions of their styles. The "Wow that's lovely" factor was there for only a very small number of them. Hence I was wondering, is that just me being picky or is it OK by my fellow drinkers? Seems it mostly is.

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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #14

How many people could identify "diacetyl, acetylaldehide and the like" while recognising that the beer tasted odd or just not to their taste.

I've drank Irish beers that were award winning and others that were spoken of very highly on the beerosphere that I have poured down the sink. Were they badly made or just not to my taste, I don't know. Taste is very subjective.

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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #15

How many people could identify "diacetyl, acetylaldehide and the like" while recognising that the beer tasted odd or just not to their taste.[/quote:13e7c76n]If they can't, is that OK? Is it good enough? I'd suggest that it's not. I'm happy to be in the whingeing minority that would rather the brewery knew how to make beer properly.

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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #16

How many people could identify "diacetyl, acetylaldehide and the like" while recognising that the beer tasted odd or just not to their taste.[/quote:r919zkar]

Those two are easy when you know what they are. Diacetyl is butterscotch, it can add to some beers (e.g. stout (e.g. Guinness SES)), but it's totally out of place in most (e.g. lagers). Acetylaldehyde is a green apple flavour. Can work in the odd (emphasis on odd) beer, but unlike diacetyl it's rarely, if ever, intentional. Personally I find mercaptan (sewage smell) very objectionable and too common. All the above are related to yeast. The last common one is the wrong phenols, aka "band-aid" or TCP, usually related to a yeast. I've had all these flaws in local beers, band-aid probably the most often.

In my time in the US over the summer I didn't get one of those. I put it down to the maturity of the segment over there. Any brewers I spoke to were very experienced, maybe 20+ years in the business.

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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #17

In my time in the US over the summer I didn't get one of those. I put it down to the maturity of the segment over there. Any brewers I spoke to were very experienced, maybe 20+ years in the business.[/quote:2mcf2507]So it's a waiting game, then. I hope you're right, and it's not just the ah-sure approach to things in general at work.

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Is Irish craft beer good enough? 4 years 8 months ago #18

There's still not enough competition to cause those who are technically flawed/ nondescript to up their game. Having tried a good chunk of what's been on the market I'd say <10% would fall in the happily drink again category, maybe only 5% that would stand up against contemparies and perhaps only a handful able to compete against the best in the UK....still a long way to go but exponentially better choice than when I moved over 7 years ago

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