« on: February 14, 2015, 09:09:38 AM »
I finally got to try Orkney's Dark Island. Mrs Klickitat and I had dental appointments in the big city so we rewarded ourselves after with a stop at Bellmont Station. It was fun to see what she threw in the cart. I grabbed stuff like Dark Island, Altbairisch Dunkel, Steam, Reissdorf, Rasputin, etc. She grabbed stuff like The Commons' Saison and Flemish Kiss, and a couple of Jolly Pumpkin's sours. At lunch she ordered Pale 31, and a Saison with rose petals from a local brewery I think. I finally got a tapped sample of Vinnie's famous IPA. Awesome but not as mind blowing as the hype makes it out to be. Then I had a really nice locally brewed Scottish/Northern English type beer from Looit.
Anyway, I cracked open that Dark Island last night. Lets just say its awesome, but if that's the #1 example, then obviously Scottish Export has a lot of wiggle room when it comes to color and flavor. While Belhaven could easily be subbed as a Northern English Brown, Dark Island seems more like a Brown Porter. I got a lot of the same notes you find in a Samuel Smith beer. Toffee, chocolate, coffee, etc. No smoke of course. I'd characterize it as a premium version of what you'd find farther south.
Good learning experience though. It will make me a lot more flexible when judging Scottish!