Total Score: 7.45/10
I could have sworn that I’ve had Black Giraffe before, in fact I did swear I said “Shit, I’ve had this beer before!” but for whatever reason I didn’t write up a review. Then again I don’t always write up reviews for every beer I try, Sean Penn’s character in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty put it (in the most succinct line of the film): “Sometimes I don’t [review beers – in his case take photos of Snow Leopards]. If I like a moment, I mean me, personally… I don’t like to have the distraction of the camera [in my case mobile phone]. I just wanna stay, in it.”
Poured from a 650ml bottle into a stein.
A: Obsidian cola body, 1 inch cappuccino khaki head that soon drops away leaving a half centimetre lace, what’s not to love? As an aside – judging dark beers is getting harder and harder these days – they all seem to coalesce into one black gumbo of delight… anyway… 7/10. Done.
S: Aroma is a mixture of cold drip coffee, metal and roasted cereal grains – not the best aroma in a coffee beer but it’s all in the taste is it not [at least 40% of my scoring is]. What is it missing? Could use less metal for a start… aside from that – remember FBS didn’t ‘wow’ me with its aroma but dropped a truck load of flavour on my tongue and said “Ere you go guvnor!” so let’s not dismiss BG yet ppl. 6/10.
T: A bit of dark fruits upfront (think prune/plum) with a toffee hint, ripe unroasted coffee bean, and cold drip coffee. Thankfully the above noted metal character is a lingering hint the background here, and the finish is a Helles Lager dry with a touch of earthy coffee bitterness. You really get a sense of that unroasted coffee cherry from the aftertaste and I think the Schwarzbier (a Lager beer) plays into that quite well – long sentence short: Coffee + Schwarzbier = Tasty. 8/10.
M: The body could use a little heft: Mid to light and slightly watery with a medium carbonation, but otherwise it feels to style, though a bit weird like a coffee flavoured soft drink. 7/10.
D: I feel like some bacon and eggs now – high praise for a coffee beer of any calibre – what Burleigh have done well here is take two seemingly disparate things: Coffee & Lager, and combine them into a brew that is sure to warrant a second tasting. I’m not the greatest fan of Burleigh, however this Schwarzbier is a tasty drop (and I love coffee, especially single origin) front of the class Burleigh. Did you do your homework? Burleigh: No. Me: Back of the class. 8/10.
Food match: Full English this brew.