The best part; the tasting.
The Belgian pale has come out pretty nice. Pleasantly attenuated too; sugars eaten leaving me with a dryness at the end. The sweeter raisin flavors of the Golding hops come through the nose and there’s no hop aftertaste at all. The bubbly effect is similar to champagne, tiny perpetual bubbles that end up residing in the middle of my tongue, right where it crests when I press it against the bottom teeth and the upper corners of my mouth.
The Irish pale is a different animal. The yeast aspect makes a tremendous difference; the effervescence is mellower, the head thin and what’s left of the nose doesn’t give me any scent at all, despite adding hops to secondary. Instead, I get sweetness much like the liquid malt I added initially so what I’m learning is that without some serious hops added to secondary or some encouraged bubbly, Golding hops added to secondary really don’t enhance the experience of drinking the beer. It’s also has a little harsher mouthfeel; the finish just isn’t quite as clean as the previous beer, is a little slicker and I’m just not sure that the malts added to this beer were conductive to improving the drinking experience.
If I was to learn anything from this, I’d say that something about your beer needs to be interesting; hops, malt or yeast, or an adjunct that affects flavors in an interesting way. It’s entirely possible that one could build a beer that is more than the sum of its parts, where the contributions of all the elements of a beer make it better than it would be but remove one of those parts and it collapses.