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NERAX volunteer thank you event

April 13, 2010

NERAX held a thank you event for the volunteers who helped make their recent New England Real Ale Exhibition in Somerville what was probably the the most successful in the 14 seasons of doing these events.  The volunteer session was held at The Independent in Somerville, MA.

NERAX volunteers appreciating Real Ale

There were three casks on hand:  Williams Brothers Fraoich Heather Ale, Williams Brothers Midnight Sun Porter, and Harviestoun’s Bitter and Twisted.

The Bitter and Twisted from Scotland is a nice British Bitter session ale with little “bitter” to it as is the standard for a British Bitter.  It was light, refreshing, and both the aroma and taste were citrusy and grassy.  This is an easy drinker.

The Williams Brothers’ offerings (also Scottish) were nice:  The Midnight Sun Porter was almost pitch black in color with a small head, and low carbonation.  To my liking it did not have a coffee taste or smell (after all, dw i’n casau coffi – Welsh for “I hate coffee”), it was malty, with a hint of molasses and chocolate, and was very smooth.

The Froach Heather Ale is billed as probably the oldest style of ale still produced in the world – now this was a wonderful offering to have as a thank you to the volunteers – a bit like Jesus turning the water to wine, and the governor of the feast recognizing that the best was saved for last – this was a in great cask condition (well for me it was – it was not “bright” enough for the NERAX gang, but poured a bit cloudy and then cleared up to a nice orangey/amber color with a creamier head than the other beers, which left a nice lacing down the glass.  The herbed, fruity flavors jumped out nicely, and the this unique beer which uses heather flowers in the brewing was a favorite of mine on this day.

Was able to spend time with new friends from the NERAX gang, and had a great time.  Nice event NERAX gang – thanks.  Looking forward to NERAX North.

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