A life just as ordinary

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Beer – #845 – Pirate Life – IIPA

You don’t choose the Pirate Life, the Pirate Life chooses you. ‘strayan beer for a change, Seems like ages since I’ve been offshore, and its a new brewer to me of course, bumping up that number to 213. Limited release into NZ, it’s very popular at home, mad if I didn’t at least give it a crack.

 all about balance

From the fill station 1.25 litres of beer which is 8.8% ABV, has 120IBU things and works out as   264 calories a serve. This is 7.81 drink units in NZ.

Brewed by Pirate Life Brewing in the style that is an Imperial IPA and that comes from a town called Adelaide, Australia (also known as the West Island)

Crafting great beer is all about balance. At one end of the scale, if you’re brewing a delicate Western European lager, you have to ensure that the four ingredients work in harmony. These more delicate styles take incredible skill to brew well as there’s nowhere to hide any miscalculations or mistakes throughout production. Launching to the almost extreme opposite, the realm of IIPAs, balance, surprisingly, is still a defining factor. Instead of delicacy in balance, it’s now big flavour in balance.



Simplistically, to achieve a big flavourful IIPA you need: Big Malt + Big Hops + Big Fermentation.

It’s a bit of complicated symbiosis between these three requirements and each of these three provide multiple elements. The malt provides the complex spectrum of sugars for fermentation as well as the main structure and body of the beer. The hops contribute bitterness to balance the malt sweetness as well as resinous piney flavours and juicy fruity-citrusy aromas. The fermentation provides us with a big hit of fun juice (ethanol) and the vast array of incredibly important characterful aroma and flavour compounds.

Not sure if that was too far off track, anyway, what you needed to take away from that was: Pirate Life IIPA is a big beer with big delicious fresh flavours that we hope you will enjoy by sticking it in your big mouth.


So, what could possibly go wrong? Well it’s a Wednesday and rather early in the week to indulge, but I will, the Pirate Life etc etc..

Big fruity aroma, sugary, and spicy too there’s a lot to be had in that.

At the darker end of the orange brown with a brilliant stark white head of some substance and  depth. Aroma is of something like passion fruit and is very tropically sweet.

Blink that’s very bitter, it’s also very sweet, and I thought momentarily of liquorice, there is so much flavour and it lingers to a towards dry finish, but it tempted by that full mouth lingering taste.

pirate-life-iipaIt’s a big beer. 

I do, though, get the alcohol tang in this, hard not to really. I don’t think I’m mistaking it for something else. But once you’re over that you get a lovely cushion of soft sugary malt and a melange of bitter flavours and tropical hits.

Although I like this, it is a bit intense and full of itself, and although I like it, it isn’t a perfect beer for me. I’d prefer something a bit more measured perhaps.

Than again, if you’ve gone into this a bit half cocked then it’s easy to see how you’d go off track. This is just big show off beer.

Also the best head on a beer I’ve had for a long time.

2016-09-21-18-41-35For the people that haven’t realised that this is live blogging  as I drink a  beer thing I’m not really rushing to pour the last 1/3rd of beer.  Well then because this has head-for-Africa I have a fourth pour to get through, a small one.

At the back of this then, top of the 9th, 4th and 10 I find that this still looks brilliant, but that it’s got a lot flatter and earthier as it warmed to where I was sitting ambient temperature, it was hard work because it is a noisy beer, and it becomes more sullen and insistent as you drink the more of it.

In the end a landlubber life might have been the right choice 

The pdubyah-o-meter rates this as 8 of its things from the thing. I think it looks brilliant, The aroma and taste are great, overall though it’s a bit stodgy it isn’t quite polished enough,  but push comes to shove it really isn’t the best dIPA I’ve had, probably. It might be as good as, I’ve not done the research of my own blog diary to know. Almost certainly the best beer from Australia I’ve ever had.

The double dip review

  • Where did I get it? from the fill station at the Liquorland store, and there isn’t much in NZ.
  • Am I enjoying it? I like it I’m not raving about it.
  • Would I have another? I’ve got two pints, that’s enough for a midweek warrior.
  • Would I share with a friend on a porch and set the world to rights? Gosh, now. It’s highly rated beer over a lot of people, but I don’t know that this is a beer that spawns a good conversation.

Music for this: ” The KVB ”  ” Flamingos ” listen along on Spotify

Like a hazily remembered dream, U.K. duo the KVB blend reverb-soaked shoegaze with minimalist electronic production to create their delicate and ephemeral sound. 


Imperial IPA, Double IPA or DIPA is a strong, often sweet, intensely hoppy version of the traditional India Pale Ale. Bitterness units range upward of 100 IBUs and alcohol begins at 7.5% but is more commonly in the 8.5-10% range. The flavour profile is intense all-round. Unlike barley wines, the balance is heavily towards the hops, with crystal and other malts providing support.




One comment on “Beer – #845 – Pirate Life – IIPA

  1. Pingback: Beer – #850 – ParrotDog – Kowhai | A life just as ordinary

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