It’s been brewing (arf!) for a few months, but now it’s been released.
According to the wonderful Guinness Blog the first new major Guinness variation for ages is already available in pubs throughout the country. The main outlet is the O’Neill’s chain, where you will find the new drink in all 71 of their Irish themed drinking holes.
So what’s this Redness all about?
Well, apparently, Guinness is given it’s blackness because they roast the barley used in it to within an inch of it’s life – giving the drink it’s supreme appearance, taste and texture.
For the new Red variety they simply go a bit easier on the barley – it is merely given a severe case of sun burn, rather than an out-and-out charcoaling. This has a couple of effects…
The first is obviously the colour. It’s red. Not wine red – but definitely red. It’s apparently like the bottom of standard Guinness Draught when you hold it up to strong light (as you can see in the poster at the top).
Fair enough, but it’s hardly a big deal – the biggest change is in the taste.
I’ll let the guys at the blog explain this one:
The lighter roasted barley knocks back the dominant bitter flavour just enough to allow some of the other flavours that are normally shrouded in a pint of Guinness, to come to the fore. This means that you get a pint with the familiar bitter/roast flavours at the front of the mouth, but with a subtle sweetness towards the finish – creating a pint with a fantastic bitter-sweet balance.
As the brewing process is the same, you still get all the usual Guinness goodness – i.e. the Two Part Pour, and the thick, velvety smooth head.
Hopefully I will be able to do some investigating over the weekend.
I’ll be sure to report back with my findings!