Four Calling Birds. Kizakura Brewery, Red Devil’s Beer 

While the birds may be calling in the song there is another character who calls upon the children at Christmas. In addition to Santa visiting the little good boys and girls homes another character visits those that have been bad. Krampus is a demon-like character who in some cultures visits the homes of children who were bad and either takes them away or scares them into good behavior. That is one way to discipline your child especially if you don’t have to pay for the counseling they will most definitely need later in life. The character of the devil has appeared in several beer names. Specifically some Belgium beers have devil or some form in their name. These are Duvel from Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat and Satan from Brouwerij De Block. But being in Japan I went with a Red Devil Beer from Kizakura Brewery. Kizakura, who brewed another beer in the lineup, created Red Devil as a highly aromatic IPA with mild bitterness. Their description plays on the name by claiming “even scary devils usually drink too much because they are too delicious”.

IPA 45–50°F (7–10°C)

Fruity floral aromas right out of the can. Smells from the glass are more of a citrus (orange) aroma. Vibrant red and very clear off white head that is very persistent. Leaves a delightful beer lace on the glass. The flavors are more malty than hop floral. Minimal bitterness. This reminds me of a New England IPA in flavor, but the beer is much too clear and red. The beer is fully attenuated and does not leave a lingering tartness of sweetness or harsh bitterness on the aftertaste. If anything the beer drys out your mouth just enough to desire the next sip as soon as you can. A very sessionable beer. I am normally very skeptical when a brewery hypes its own beers but when Kizakura described that “even scary devils will drink too much” I think they knew this because of experience. I am actually surprised about this beer. I fully expected that this would be a novelty beer that relied more on can design and naming than any beer development.

Kizakura’s website states that this beer is best with fried foods or strong flavored meals such as hamburgers or spicy curry.  My favorite pairing with an IPA is fish tacos, especially ones where the fish is heavily seasoned or there is the sriracha sauce over the taco.  This beer specifically I would make sure that I had some lime juice on my tacos and make sure that there was plenty of cilantro.  Those flavors would pair nicely with the citrus hop aroma and sweet malty flavors of this beer.  I find that the hop bitterness found in IPAs does nicely to cut into the heat of the spiciness.  

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