A Year of Beer 2009 #6 - Birrificio Italiano Tipopils & Bibock
Another part of our (hopefully) year-long video project, A Year of Beer. looking at the idea of beer and seasonality - how different styles of beer are more appropriate to different seasons, weathers, festivals and so on. There will also be a bit of beer and food matching thrown in because, hell, we love to eat as much as we love to drink.
This week: Birrificio Italiano Tipopils & Bibock
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Birrificio Italiano Tipopils & Bibock
You know what? I don't know anything about these beers beyond what you see in the video. Agostino Arioli, the formaggio grande at Birrificio Italiano, happened to be visiting Thornbridge Brewery a few days after I first got in touch with him, and very kindly bought a few bottles over with him for my delectation. I was expecting a couple of 33cl bottles of really good pilsner, but what actually turned up totally rocked my world (that sounds a bit over the top, I know, but read on).
Firstly, the presentation. The beers are packed in dumpy, square-shouldered 75cl bottles. They look cool, so cool in fact that they have a place in our hall of fame, which is a line of great beers we've drunk that we don't stock. You have to be special to get on there. These are special.
Of course, looking cool is nothing without a bit of substance to back it up, and goodness me, these beers have substance. Tipopils is a hazy unpasteurised, unfiltered pilsner, absolutely bursting with the kind of vitality that you expect to find in a really good cask ale. It's alive, and you can feel its energy when you drink it. It's malty, nutty, spritzy and energising. I looked to see how far the brewery was from my current location; a 15 hour drive. It's nearly worth it. I'm going to be in Nice later this year, and it's only 4 hours from there. It's a no-brainer.
Bibock is a splendid, intense, well-hopped bock-style beer. Again, it's so full of energy that it almost takes your breath away. Have a look at my reaction (2min35sec); I drink a lot of different beers, and I don't do that very often.
As if all this wasn't exciting enough, Agostino might be doing a collaborative brew with Thornbridge soon. If that doesn't pull the planet off its axis, I don't know what will.