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Wednesday, 25 May 2011

European Beer #3 - Focus: Switzerland

OK, the title of this blog is definitely misleading.  Essentially it's an homage to a very passionate (well, he is Italian) brewer called Lorenzo, founder of the Bad Attitude brewery in Switzerland, close to the Italian border.  I've never had any other Swiss beers.  But please indulge me and read on.

Examples of bad attitude's funky designs

The first Bad Attitude beer I tasted was the "Two Penny" stout.  Being a Beer Bloggers Conference, we had a session called "speed blogging".  The idea being that each brewer had 5 minutes during which to pour your beer and explain about the beer / brewery or answer questions.  The blogger had 5 minutes to taste, make notes, take photos and post a blog.  Speed drinking was probably a more apt name, as those who gamely tried soon discovered it simply wasn't possible to drink, enjoy and communicate the enjoyment of a good beer in less than 5 minutes.

Despite some other good beers in the session, Bad Attitude's "Two Penny" won out as the firm favourite of the afternoon.  Lorenzo is a great fan of England and takes a lot of inspiration from our beers, this 8.15% Porter clearly demonstrates that (especially the Union Jack on the cap!)   The Two Penny had a smokey, chocolately nose, with the addition of a smooth, rich, alcohol warming on the follow through.  Not packing the devlish punch it should at that ABV, just luciously sweet and mellow.  Dangerous stuff!!!

Alas I was too slow to grab a sample of both the other beers Lorenzo bought, but I did managed to get my hands on the last "Hobo IPA" (below) which I've enjoyed tonight.

The Hobo IPA is a rich chestnut 5.95% IPA.  The English inspiration in this beer is evident.  Not the light grassy notes you get in some more American style beers, but a more traditional English gruff feel to the bitterness.  A metallic, almost herbal, nose is followed by a smooth palette that converts back to that original metallic note after swallowing.  A bold and punchy IPA, I thought this was just great.

I must seek out some more Swiss beers, to do the country justice (and because the examples above probably bear a heavy Italian influence).  But I also hope sometime to pay a visit to Bad Attitude brewery because as my first Swiss beer, it will always have a special place in my heart.  And I think Lorenzo has a pair of wellies waiting with my name on them?  Yes?


  1. Best beer of the live blogging session the Two Penny. Hobo sounds great too, I missed that one myself.

  2. That porter was fantastic. I went straight back and finished off an almost-full bottle and then grabbed a few more to bring home, including the IPA which I'm really looking forward to try. I love the look of their beers and I love the shape of the bottles.