The Asahi Super Dry Black.
The Asahi Super Dry Black.

Never judge a beer by its colour

There have been many scientific studies into how what you see impacts how things taste. Apparently evolution has ensured we are not great at eating things that are greeny-blue, which makes a lot of sense when you think about the colour of rotting meats and moulds and brussel sprouts.

What it also means is, for the drinker, when you see a black frothy substance in a glass, your expectation is to taste something more akin to the malty breadiness of an English stout or porter, rather than the crispness of a Japanese lager. But this crispness is exactly what you get from the Asahi Super Dry Black.

This is a dry beer that happens to be a dark black in colour. In fairness, it does not absolutely taste like a lager - there is far more malt and perhaps the slightest smokiness, although this may well be your eyes telling your nose what to look for.

There is a pronounced dry finish to the beer. It does not linger in the mouth the way really hoppy IPAs do, nor have the chewiness of a porter. Both Hugh the Neighbour and I thought this was a beer that you could really enjoy.

We did wonder what was the best drinking temperature to bring the best out of the beer. Go properly cold as you do with a lager, or let it warm up a bit as you tend to do with heavier black beers? In the end, we felt that colder was the way to go.

This is a beer to try over the festive season. You will not frighten lager drinkers, even if they need convincing that some- thing so dark is a good idea on a 40C day.