This is the last of the mini-series of Sussex beers from a selection suggested by Rach Smith of Look at Brew (@lookatbrew) and it’s a 6.5% IPA.
We bought our can of Zamzama online from South Down Cellars for £2.70 plus delivery and it has been sat in our fridge since arriving a couple of months ago. Rach says:
Gun beers have become some of my favourites over the past couple of years, not just among Sussex beers, but overall. I think the Sussex spring water that’s used may help with that! The modern and often creative beers are flying the flag for contemporary Sussex brews and breaking out of the region. This is the boldest beer in the core range, and drinks with a huge profile of pineapple, mango and lychee, with a spicy kick and toffee to round it all off.
It came out of the can a slightly hazy gold, throwing up a lot of enticing orange peel aroma, and with plenty of carbonation. (See photo above.) Pouring what was left in the can nudged it from hazy to cloudy but didn’t seem to much change the flavour.
Rach mentioned pineapple, mango and lychee; our first gulps suggested passion fruit. But in the world of tasting notes, same difference, really. Sweet, vibrant, sticky tropical fruit is the point.
We were delighted by how clean it tasted — no staleness, no cardboard, not a wheelbarrow full of muddy onions, just a lot of Jaffa Cake jelly and jam, balanced by a rye bread bitterness in the background. Cans can be a lottery but this time it worked.
It’s perhaps more of a 2010 beer than a 2017 one — the kind of thing we remember drinking at The Rake in Borough Market in the form of expensive American imports — but that’s fine by us.
It is sweet and Ribena-like, though, and we’d perhaps like a touch more bitterness, but that’s not a fault, just a preference.
If you like juicy, fruity, Technicolor beers but find too many of the most feted examples excessively dirty and savoury, as we do, then consider giving this one a go.
We’d like to thank Rach again for choosing beers and providing notes, and apologise for having made a bit of mess of the buying process. We’re going to think about who to invite next but have a few ideas bubbling away already.