The Big Friendly Giant by ClubGonzo, Imperial India Pale Ale, 8.2% ABV, 106 IBU.
I’ve been a huge Roald Dahl fan ever since I was a little kid, and I’ve probably read all his novels, short stories and children’s books. The Big Friendly Giant is one of my absolute favourites, so ClubGonzo better have made a fantastic brew when using His name!
The body is dark amber and ends up quite cloudy, with a large, creamy, off-white head that is very long-lived and reduces to a everlasting thick layer. The head leaves quite much lacing on the glass.
The aroma is rather strong and pleasant, although it lacks a bit in intensity and complexity, and deliciousness for that matter, to be an absolute winner. But by all means, it’s tempting stuff! It’s of course heavy hoppy, but there are also obvious malty elements, like sweet caramel. The hoppy part consists mostly of resin, citrus and some perfume-like notes, in addition to fruits. It’s not as fruity as I like (I)IPAs to be, there’s no tropical fruit bowl here. Finally there is quite much alcohol. Oh no. Will this turn out to be another too alcoholic beer from Bergen?
The taste is moderate sweet with a heavy bitter finish that actually isn’t that long-lasting. The flavours are of moderate intensity, and as I feared, the alcohol is far too dominant. I find it very difficult to pick out the different flavours in this one, other than some generic fruity notes, resin and this stinging alcohol.
The mouthfeel is ok (but again the moderate alcoholic finish doesn’t make it very drinkable), with a medium body, oily texture and soft carbonation.
Conclusion: the beers from JoKr Brewers/ClubGonzo tend to be either crazy and experimental or tasty and nice (and in some cases all of the above). Even if they sometimes are a bit too experimental for my taste, they are always interesting! The BFG on the other hand is just… well… a bit boring, uninteresting and with an aggressive and unpleasant alcoholic feel, and with too faint and unfocused flavours. This isn’t a Big Fiendly Giant, this is closer to a Childchewer, a Fleshlumpeater or a Bloodbottler.
Aroma: 7 Apperance: 4 Taste: 5 Palate: 2 Overall: 10 Ratebeer Score: 2.8