I'm enjoying a short stay in Sneem at the moment, and as is customary for my short trips away, I've brought a couple of bottles of nice beer with me, in case of beery emergencies.
The first of those is Grottenbier. This 6.5% St. Bernardus product is apparently aged in caves, and is the brainchild of Pierre Celis. Certainly there's an element or two of the 'Celis' to this beer. It pours a cloudy chestnut brown with a finger of pale, white eggshell head. The aroma is spicy, almost sour to begin with, but it soon mellows out to reveal clove and coriander sitting atop an otherwise malty body. The clove and coriander are better defined in the taste, and make up a generally spice orientated taste. Once again, this only really asserts itself in the beginning, before warming up to smooth toffee malts, until the finish kicks in with it's lasting floral bitterness.
The body's light but quite satisfying, and it's a very interesting beer. Affordable too, so I'd recommend it for sure.
Sneem is a gorgeous place, and though the weather doesn't quite do it justice at this time of year, the mist does give it a sort of ethereal beauty. Also, rumour has it there's a pub in this tiny town that sells Irish craft beer.
Truly, a gift from the gods.