Tweet While going through the pending tasting notes I have I found those from Glops. Ramón and his wife brought them from Spain, and they gave them to me during the pleasant lunch we had at Svijansý Rytíř.
They were three samples, Glops Torrada, Glops Negra y Glops D'hivern. They are brewed by Llúpols i Llevats a microbrewery from Barcelona.
It was the second batch of Spanish beers I was going to taste. The first one was from industrial breweries, and some of the samples really impressed me. With Glops I had more curiosity than expectations. Llúpols i Llevats is a relatively new company, established in 2005, working in a market where local craft beers still seem to be very much a novelty.
I started by Torrada and it wasn't a happy beginning. The label says it's a lager with 4,5%ABV, fermented 7 days and lagered for 21. According to the webpage it is a dunkles, though its colour looked a bit too pale. Both the bouquet and the taste were overwhelmed by something that I wasn't able to identify at first, though it was very familiar, it took me a bit to figure it out, but I still wasn't 100% sure, so I went to the kitchen and cut myself a slice of rye bread. It was that, and it wasn't at all pleasant, it opresses the rest of the elements and makes the beer very hard to drink. It reminded me a bit of the rawness of that CAR that had been lagering only for 14 days, but here much stronger. It can be that those 21 days were not enough, or it can also been some sort of contamination that I can't identify. Whatever it is, I didn't like it a single bit.
Negra came in second. Also a lager, also with 4,5%ABV and with the same time for fermenting and lagering. Rather than black (Negra) it pours dark amber, topped by a generous head that goes away a bit too quickly. On the nose I noticed roasted apples and some chocolate in a nice balance. So far, pretty good. There was some cocoa at the begninning together with some citrus notes and with a mostly coffee finish. It would have been a pretty fine beer if it hand't been for the incredibly excessive carbonation that gave it a mouthfeel akin to a cola drink. At times the taste of CO2 overwhelmed the rest. I let the glass stay for about 10 minutes, hoping the fizziness would go away, no such luck. What a pity.
I wasn't expecting much when it was time for the third one, d'Hivern. It is a seasonal beer, brewed with barley malt, honey and spices and hops, listed in that order. I could be exagerating if I said that I was expecting the worst, but I certainly wasn't looking forward to opening and drinking this beer. In this case, it is an Ale, a bit stronger, with 6,8%ABV, as it should be for a winter beer. "Now we are talking!", such, or something like that, were my words when taking the first sip. I liked it, and it almost made me forget the previous two. Rich gold, very foggy. Yeasts, honey and fruit on the nose, almost like a home made panettone. The predominating fruity notes are well balanced by the honey, finishing with very tasty ginger and clove. I really enjoyed it a lot, drinking very slowly. Very good beer.
However, the impression I was left with wasn't all that good. It is likely that I had bad luck and that the bottles didn't reach me in very good conditions, if that is the case, I would like to taste Torrda and Negra again, othwerwise, I think their creators will have to adjust quite a few screws because if the don't, I don't think they will be able to succeed in a market like the Spanish.
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