Beer is our passion, but Scotch is a close second (for Bruce, anyway), particularly the smokey, peaty variety produced on the cold, windswept isle of Islay in the Scottish Hebrides. It’s an acquired taste, to be sure, but one that really hits the spot on a fall night. So it was with great expectations that we sampled a beer from Islay at the new Pizzeria Paradiso in Dupont Circle: “Storm” from Scotland’s BrewDog, an 8% ABV Imperial IPA aged in Islay whiskey barrels.
The beer poured a cloudy amber with no head, making it appear something the whiskey we know and love. But that is where the similarity ended. The bartender warned us that it tasted like an ashtray. His assessment was spot on. That’s not to say that Storm is not a good beer. It is; but like it’s distilled cousin, it probably requires repeated attempts before the drinker can develop a taste for it. We’d be more that willing to give it another go, but for the price, in excess of $20 for a standard 12 oz.-bottle. Still, if you’re bored with the same old thing and are up for some pricey adventure, there might be a few bottles still on hand at Pizzeria Paradiso. Let us know what you think.