“2023 marks 18 years of Bridge Road Brewers crafting beer in Beechworth. To celebrate we’ve created yet another edition of the fabled anniversary ale, the B2 Bomber. The 13th edition of our annual birthday beer maintains the unmistakeable combination of complex dark malts, fruity Belgian yeast characters and big punchy hops. Mach 13 sees us going all-in with a Spectrum hop combo and an ABV of 10.4. An artful balance of these familiar B2 elements with layers of Spectrum hops makes this a beer to savour. What do we call it? A Black Belgian Double Spectrum IPA. This is an exceptional beer, nothing less will do for our 18th celebration.”
Appearance: Pours an opaque light black with a two finger crown perched on top. Good head retention and lots of intricate lacing on the glass.
Aroma: Ooft! Stings the nostrils. Over the years we’ve realised that each release in this monstrous yet brilliant series benefits from a little bit of age. As this year’s edition has only just been released its still quite fierce, coming at us with vigorous phenols, warming booze and sharp piney hops. Some citrus acidity also peeking through. Loving the subtle Belgian candi sugars, roasted malts, cocoa, musk and fennel too.
Flavour : Noticeably smoother which is surprising. Usually it’s the other way around. Sure, it still has some fire but the depth and complexity balances it out. An explosion of flavour on entry – Belgian yeast/phenols, candi sugars, roasted malt, pine, herbal and citrusy hops then a more accentuated citrus quality through the mid. It gets a bit harsh and acrid late in the piece as it finishes roasty and piney with a fair sting in the tail.
Mouthfeel: Big and warming. A slightly lifted Co2 yet still a tad oily. Medium-full body and the 10.4% ABV is evident.
Overall: It’s certainly a fun beer to review. Lots going on, aggressive and very multilayered. The spectrum hopping method is also really cool and we’d love to go into that more but to keep this from turning into an essay we’ll touch on it another day. Solid offering.