NASA Ales – I’m in the gutter looking up at the stars……..
Those who know me well may have gathered I like the occasional beer. Living in the Capital of Real Ale also helps, so though I would never describe myself as a connoisseur, I can draw on a few years’ experience when assessing the contents of a flagon. So it was with some delight when my (sorry Cath, “our”) wedding present from the Porcos Bravos arrived in Sheffield S6. Not one but six, count them, boxes of NASA breweries finest ales. NASA is the fledgling brewery part owned by AG Cup legends Viktor, his version of the Galician national anthem at Yellow Arch is enshrined in Cup Folk Lore and Lois who spent some time honing his craft in Sheffield’s Brewery Tap as well as drinking in every pub in town. Rather helpfully the boxes came with labels of the various ales inside, stuck on the box so I thought it only right and proper to try them all first and give my two-penneth. I don’t know if this is the complete NASA range but here goes.
Summer IPA (3.5% ABV)
As bright and clear as a summers day in Hartlepool, this brew looks like a classic straw coloured IPA. But looks can be deceptive. Despite the low ABV this is packed with taste from the immediate sweetness to the lingering hoppy delight that follows. A perfect “session” ale in that you can drink 10 pints before you need the toilet, it’s a taste sensation. I can still taste it now and I’ve just had a curry. Result.
Listed as a classic German Pilsner I think this is the first beer the lads brewed. It has that robust though well-rounded sweetness found in the best Pils without being too gassy (thus reducing farting capacity to a minimum). Again, the taste lingers long which seems to be a NASA signature. This one seems to be stronger and more complex than the 5% would suggest which is good news for the committed piss-artist. I usually drink Guinness own Hop House 13 lager but this kicks its arse.
Slightly darker in hue this little beauty is wheaty, meaty, big and bouncy. Only an additional .4% on the Richter scale but it is quite distinct from the Original. Slightly more chewy but clean and refreshing this one could very quickly become your best mate.
Described as a Bohemian Pilsner it certainly made me want to get a flat in Chelsea and quote Byron. But enough of that bollocks. Not as dark as some Bavarian Brown beers or as sweet as some of the other beers in this range this is as smooth as the proverbial babies’ butt-cheek. It’s a mature and immensely satisfying brew, little wonder King Ludwig went mad if he drank this stuff. I’m mad for it too. Sensational and my favourite so far.
Chapa Porter (6%)
A change of scenery. This one is as dark as a Porcos Bravos heart. I’m not sure of the difference between a Porter and a Stout or if indeed there is one as they seem to be brewed from the same dark malt, but this black beauty doesn’t have the head or the corporate smoothness of that popular Stout you may be familiar with but is all the better for it. Not so much velvet as a superior quality black leather this one is full of malty goodness and should be one of your “five a day”. A fine addition to the NASA crew.
NASA Extrema (6.7%)
Say hello to the daddy. If you are getting bullied at school, you send for NASA Extrema and it will kick the bullies head in. It’s a rich ruby ale subtle as a Fer penalty kick with a warm yeasty glow. Beware. This bad boy goes down easier than a Porcos in the box but if you do not respect its’ authority you could get in a tangle. Stags take note, if they offer you this before the kick off pull a sickie. After the match it will be the best beer you have ever tasted, Guaranteed.
That’s your lot. Thanks and congratulations to the NASA boys. Your beer is superb. You are wizards of the hops.