The Barking Deer finally opens their taps!
We have great news for you. Mumbai finally has her first microbrewery! The Barking Deer in Lower Parel recently got their microbrewery licenses and are ready to pour out their home brews from November 7, 2013. As Gregory Kroitzsh, the owner, puts it, “Impossible happens.” He together with Brewmaster Benjamin Johnson and Chef Parag Joglekar are all geared up to serve some great brews and food. If you’re there on the November 7, keep a lookout for the auction of the first glass of the brews, the proceeds are to go to a charity.
We were one of the first to try out what the brews tasted like, and we are happy to inform you that they stand up to the test of quality. They are starting out with three brews – Bombay Blonde Ale, Flying Pig Belgian Wit and India Pale Ale. They also have a Porter brewing in those vats behind the bar, but it will be some time before Johnson deems it fit to serve.
An Alaskan, Johnson had to wait two years before he could get his brews ready. These beers are unique, he adds, “Beers are easily influenced by the ingredients used and the conditions they are made in.” Being in India he definitely tried some experiments. The Flying Pig Belgian Wit was originally supposed to have some oranges, but Johnson replaced that with the local sweet lime, Mausambi. For the India Pale Ale, it was pretty simple for him, “We put India back in IPA.” This brew uses three types of hops – European, New Zealand and American.
Each of the three beers are unique and distinct with their flavors and the craft of the craft beer comes through beautifully. Priced at around Rs. 250 to Rs. 300 (plus taxes) for 400 ml, they are great value-for-money as well, specially considering prices of imported beers on tap.
Bombay Blonde Ale
Light and easy drinking beer with not much hops or bitterness. Your best bet if you are used to commercial beers and (like us), are fed up of them and looking to try something new or if are not a regular beer drinker.
Flying Pig Belgian Wit
Brewed with pilsner malt and malted wheat, the beer has delicate flavors of citrus and grapefruit. This is a style most beer drinkers would enjoy and works very well with our hot weather. Like with the Blond Ale, the bitterness is fairly controlled.
India Pale Ale
Finally, finally we get an India Pale Ale. IPA, is essentially a pale ale which was brewed with extra hops for British troops in India so the beer could survive the heat. IPAs faded away when the British Raj ended and thankfully, they are back! This IPA has a fresh and somewhat light body with a hoppy taste along with raisin like sweetness followed by a clean and fitter finish. While its not as hoppy and bitter as the IPAs we are used to having, its a very good start.
Overall, the beers are excellent. They might not be as hoppy and bitter as some of us would like, we are sure Johnson will experiment and play around with that after getting feedback and response from customers.
Mumbai finally has craft beers! We now look forward to see Gateway Brewing Company and White Owl serve their beers soon, but as of now, we wish our office was next to The Barking Deer.
Address: The Barking Deer, Todi Mills Compound, Mathurdas Mills, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai; +91 8691093242