To start with, I’ll make a confession. I’m writing this post on Thursday, about a pint I had on Tuesday. As it’s transfer deadline day and I’m at work I won’t be able to get to a pub to have a pint, and this particular pint has lingered in my mind.
Dancing Man Brewery is situated on the premises of The Platform Tavern pub in Southampton. The brewery is the brainchild of bar manager Aidan Levin, who is one of the most enthusiastic brewers you could hope to meet.
When I tried the first batch of beers at the brewery’s launch night I wasn’t overly impressed. Talking to Aidan and hearing the ideas he had for future brews told me that it would be worth coming back. Thankfully, I did.
Last Thursday, as I was sat in The Southampton Arms in Kentish Town, I received a phone call from Aidan, telling me that there was a festival that weekend at The Platform Tavern, featuring three new beers, including a Black IPA. I was heading home anyway to brew the lager on Friday, and so I decided to pop in on my way back.
The three new beers available (Last Waltz, Pole-Axed and Cloud Cuckoo) were all wonderful, and proof that my suspicions were right that Aidan’s beers would get better. The stand out for me of the beers I had last Thursday, was Pole-Axed, a Citra hopped IPA, brewed to be taken by an expedition down to the South Pole. I’ve said a few times to various people that I’ve never really liked Citra as a hop. Indeed, to this point, the only beers I’ve liked that have been hopped solely with Citra have been Kernel’s IPA and Anchor’s Brekle’s Brown. Now I can add Pole-Axed to that, and hopefully Aidan can get enough Citra to brew it again at some point.
Now, onto the DNA, which was one of the beers that Aidan mentioned back in January when the brewery launched. When poured, it looks like a standard brown ale. Hidden within the taste of this beer however, is a sweetness that has come from the addition of marmalade to the brew.
It took me a while to figure out if I liked it or not, and if I’m honest, I’m still not sure now. The fact that I wanted to go back for more would suggest that I did indeed enjoy it, yet I’m not sure why. The beer had a cloying stickiness, much like the lingering bitterness of some of the overtly hoppy beers.
The conclusion I came to as I reached the halfway mark of the pint, was that a pint of a beer this sweet maybe too much. As I continued to drink, I realised that this wasn’t a session beer, it wasn’t a beer to casually drink at lunchtime, it was a beer that would be perfect after food, or as an accompaniment to an appropriate dessert.
I’m pretty sure I did like it. I certainly want to try it again, and I’ll be there on Sunday to have a pint or two of whatever is on before heading to the match at St. Marys. There are plans for another festival in November, which may include a Chocolate and Chilli Stout. I’ll be in America, but you should make your way down to Southampton if you can.
Actually, you should make your way down anyway and see what’s on.