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#CollabFest2015 part four, live from @BrewDogShepBush

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After a quick fish supper at Hook in Camden, we're on the Overground to the other side of town to wrap up our Collabfest 2015 at Shepherds Bush. Sorry to the bars at Brighton, Dundee, Leeds, Newcastle and ShuffleDog - we just didn't have time for your beers this year. (Maybe in 2016, by which point the number of BrewDog bars working in CollabFest will be even more ridiculous.) In terms of the picture, we're working from right to left this time, for reasons which will eventually become apparent.

1. Safeword (Shepherd's Bush/Weird Beard, 6.6%)
Chokeberry IPA. Nice flavour, and a cheeky name in the circumstances. I found it a bit thin, but The BBG disagrees, finding it reminiscent of BrewDog's own Hello My Name Is... series of fruity brews. I didn't dislike it, but I've come to expect more from this brewery.

2. Red Mist (Birmingham/Salopian, 5.5%)
American amber. Much darker than I'd expect an amber to be, to the extent that we initially thought the staff had mixed it up with the red rye IPA. (Still not 100% sure, but the next one tastes more like what you'd expect from a rye IPA.) Nicely malty, which sets it apart from most of the beers we've tasted today.

3. Little Red Rye (Liverpool/Liverpool Craft Beer Co, 6.7%)
Imperial red rye IPA. Assuming this is what it says it is... Lots more bitterness, quite a good mouthfeel to it, with that lightness I tend to associate with rye beers. Not much more to be said apart from that, but pleasant enough.

4. Big Raspberry Dog Chew (Glasgow/Fallen, 10%)
Raspberry salted caramel imperial milk stout. The biggest ABV value on the card, and the one that seems to have been generating the most online chatter today, probably for the same reason. As The BBG said, "it's all there" - raspberries, salted caramel and stoutiness, all coming together beautifully without ever advertising how strong it is. We always thought BrewDog's own ten percenter Cocoa Psycho went down too easily for safe drinking, but this is even easier. Though The BBG thinks that like Cocoa Psycho, one at the end of the night is just enough. Looks like we timed this just right, then.

I think Big Raspberry Dog Chew just about wins for me, with I Am The One Who Equinox and Kenya Kick It? not too far behind. The BBG takes a similar tack, saying Dog Chew is probably the best beer overall, and Equinox is the one you'd most like to drink in bulk - but there are plenty of others here she'd be keen to revisit, like Not Another Eurovision Beer. Some of these should stay hanging around your local BrewDog bar for a few days after Collabfest, so give them a go for yourself.
31st Oct 2015, 22:20  

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