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Brewdog Bashah

January 21, 2010

Bashah must mean “writer’s block” in whatever language the word originates from, whether it be a Celtic dialect or Na’vi. I say this because this is the third time I have sat down trying to construct some sort of meaningful, informational, or even borderline useful review of Brewdog Bashah.  Sure, I could just list what I saw, tasted, and smelled, but then any three sentence review on Beeradvocate or Ratebeer can give you that.  I created Beer Epiphany in order to take the average beer review and give it some gusto just like many other great beer bloggers have done before me.  Therefore, as weird as it sounds, writers block can be a real pain-in-the-A when it comes to beer blogging.  After all, why should anyone care what I smell and taste in a beer.  There’s a good chance they are going to smell and taste different things even if they are drinking the same beer right next to me.  So, in order to make my experience relevant I go to great lengths to make each one of my beer reviews feel like I were reviewing my favorite beer just for you.

So, is it the abnormal amounts of Modern Warfare 2 I have been playing online (callsign SERmaniac if you want to friend me) the past 72 hours that has gotten in the way?  Or is it the beer itself?  Is there something about Bashah that causes my mind to blank everytime I load up WordPress?  Regardless, here I sit determined to write this review and escape Bashah’s spell over Beer Epiphany.

I’ll start with the basics.  First off, this is not solely a Brewdog creation.  It is actually a collaboration between Brewdog of Scotland and Stone Brewing Company of California.  There is also a video being released  titled “Stone Skips Across the Pond” that chronicles Bashah’s creation.  The full-length edition is available February 11th, 2010 according to Stone’s website.  Living in Central Illinois gives me access to a few of Brewdogs beers, but I’m far away from anything Stone.  So, when I realized  that this was actually a collaboration between two brewers I was unfamiliar with I was quite pleased.

Bashah is labeled as a black Belgian style double IPA.  Just to be clear this style doesn’t actually exist (yet), and Bashah is listed as an American Strong Ale on both BA and RB.  However, it was that description that caused me to jump at the opportunity to have this draft at my local pub for $4.50 a pint.


Beer: Brewdog/Stone Bashah

Brewer: Brewdog/ Stone Brewing Co.

Style: American Strong Ale, Doubple IPA, Black IPA, Belgian IPA

Serving: Draft, 10 oz. snifter glass

ABV: 8.6%


As the beer arrived in its small snifter the first thing I noticed was that they really meant black.  This thing is black as night.  Zero light shows through.  On top of the dark matter sits a light light tan head of about two fingers width.  The nose is, and I quote from my notes that evening, “A wonderful mix of roast and hops.”  Spice is also present, and it’s funky, but not in a bad way.  The flavor keeps things in balance just like the Supreme Court keeps tabs on Congress.  It is roasty just like the color suggests, but then blends nicely into a surprising citrus hop flavor.  This beer really nails the two opposite spectrums of the beer world.  Many beers accomplish extreme roast or hops well, but the two aren’t often conjoined successfully.  In the mouth I am also getting a hint of apple cider, delicious.

The mouth is heavy.  No mistake about that.  The alcohol is hidden well my the mashing of flavors and aromas.  The heavy thickness also helps to mask the high-ish ABV.  The finish is bitter chocolate and is simply lovely.

So, ten ounces and ten days later I am still no closer to knowing exactly what Bashah is.  It defies stylization, but you could also argue the brewers nailed it with their long and complex style listing (BBSDIPA).  Maybe in a few years the BJCP will even recognize it.  Is the spell broken?  It feels that way.  It could have been  the cryptic commercial description or the gargoyle clinging to the Brewdog crest, but whatever it was it’s gone.  If the beer wasn’t so darn tasty I’d love to say I will never venture back to Bashah, but that is one promise I cannot make.  At least next time I won’t have sit here and review it.

I belive the Belgians call that lace


Appearance: 4.5/5

Aroma: 4.8/5

Flavor: 4.5/5

Mouthfeel: 3.7/5

Drinkability: 3.8/5

Overall: 4.26/5

Chance for Beer Epiphany: 55%

This beers chance of providing a beer epiphany lies solely in the drinker and their personal tastes.  I say this because it’s very roasty and pretty hoppy, which are two things that do not always immediately appeal to novice craft beer drinkers.  Give this to anyone who can already stomach a Guinness or run-of-the-mill IPA we might just have another one on our team.



Stone Brewing Company



Bashah with it's friends Avery The Beast Grand Cru and SKA Modus Hoperandi

  1. Brewdog and Stone? Sounds like a pretty ballsy beer. I’ll look into it!

    • I haven’t seen it in bottles yet, but I’m sure it out there somewhere.

      • I haven’t either … but I will try to track it down. There are a few good beer bars here that sometimes have some unusual stuff on tap.

  2. nearlyheadlessnick permalink

    How was the mouth swish-a-roo? Did it feel like swirling motor oil around in your mouth? Or was it more like buttermilk? Looks heavier than a Guinness?

  3. It was pretty much medium. It wasn’t as thick as motor oil or watery like a pale lager. I’ve had many a Guinness and this was much lighter, but the ABV is much higher. Thanks for the comment!

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