Little Creatures (Single Batch) Quiet American
Well this beer has quite a frustrating story behind it! As you may be aware, Little Creatures is a West Australian boutique brewer in Fremantle - less than an hour south of Perth (although people from Freo seem to think it’s half an hour…but that’s another story). Every year they brew a small batch of beer for limited release - the Single Batch. In Perth there’s almost a cult following (I say almost because the scale of this following is FAR less than that of say Pliny the Younger) for these Single Batches, and they get snatched up pretty quickly. So the time came when the bottle shops received their once off delivery of the beer (only 2-5 cartons, with 12 568mL bottles per carton), and the masses flocked, pillaged and left many an empty shelf.
Which leads to my pandemic situation. I was away for the week these beers were being delivered, so I missed out on securing myself any of this beer. After going around to bottle shop after bottle shop, only to find out they were all sold out, I happened across 3 cartons at a drive through bottlo down the road! The bliss was short lived, however, because due to popular demand the bottle shop was only selling the beer by the carton - yes you had to buy all 12 at once, meaning this beer was only available to 3 lucky customers, rather than 36 satisfied individuals. Where’s the equity in that huh? The manager was adamant about not splitting up the cartons.
So in my frustration, I left feeling bamboozled and ripped off. Building up some effort, I decided to go back later on, with the thought of sneaking into the coolroom to rip apart a carton and getting 2 bottles anyway. However, the manager had left, so I politely asked the worker behind the counter for 2 bottles, hoping he wouldn’t be aware of the carton-only rule. To my surprise, there in front of me sat 2 bottles! Apparently the manager himself and one of the other staff members wanted the cartons for themselves, and therefore tried to deter others from buying them by applying the carton-only rule.
To cut to the end of the story, I ended up going back and buying the rest of the carton I’d initially split up, so I guess I did abide by the carton-only rule…. But that just goes to show how much I liked the beer!
So on to the beer I guess..
This year Little Creatures have released The Quiet American: a Belgian inspired ale with strong American roots - thanks to the Cascade and Chinook hops. The beer pours a rich cloudy golden with a small white fluffy head. Tropical pineapple and hints of banana really come through in the aroma, along with spicy notes.
The description given by Little Creatures is spot on! To me, it’s like a toned down Leffe Blonde mixed with the dryer bitter hop edge of an American IPA. The Belgian fullness and smoothness carries through spicy undertones, and it is intertwined with floral hop to give an astounding result, one Little Creatures should be proud of. As it warms up, the smooth banana flavour becomes more prominent, but takes away from the overall experience. This is one to have straight from the fridge.
Moving to a Leffe Blonde afterwards, the similarities are easy to pick up on, yet the Quiet American just has an added dimension - not making it better, only making it different. If you can still get your hands on this, go for it! Hopefully you don’t have to go through the same ordeal, but if so, just go for the carton - you won’t regret it.