So keeping in theme with devious beers, I am proud to bring you New England Brewing’s offering, Neighbor of the Beast, with the appropriate house number of 668 right on the bottle. These guys have all their bases covered. Neighbor of the Beast is a Belgian style brew… so with that being said, I’m assuming that it’s Germany that takes on the role of Satin here. I mean, France is certainly not badass enough to pull of that role and the Dutch are just too nice. So for the third time in the last 100 years, Germany’s wrath strikes again. UN sanctions? Anywho, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this beer after loving Ghandi Bot and Sea Hag, so I was hopeful Neighbor of the Beast would follow in their footsteps. Did it? Let’s do the numbers:
Smell: Bananas is the first thing you get when you stick your nose in. Yeast is in there, as well as some suntan lotion… seriously. Weird to describe, but that’s what I smell. The slightest bit of hops makes its way towards the end.
Taste: The Banana taste is also one of the first things that I noticed when the beer hit the tongue. Some spiciness is in there, mix between coriander and liquorish. I can definitely taste the alcohol in the beer, but I’d say it makes its presence known on the finish. It lingers in the back of your throat. I also get a little of that metaly taste that targets the sides of your tongue. It could be mistaken of bitterness (which it sort of is I guess…) but it’s not terribly pleasant and it’s not the “hoppy” kind of bitterness.
You can definitely tell that it is a Belgian style beer, but the fact that it’s so transparent is somewhat disappointing. I like my Belgians to have a little funk and a little yeast floating inside of them, however to its credit, Neighbor of the Beast does not taste overly yeasty. You can taste that it does try to be an upper echelon craft because of its many flavors and ingredients, but I’m not sure if the meld harmoniously together.
Overall, I’d say this beer is more like purgatory than it is hell or heaven. It just sort of exists. Nothing about the beer blows me away, but at the same time, it’s certainly not awful either. I spent 4 dollars on a single can, which isn’t a whole lot, but if you were to get a 4 pack of this, you’d be paying 12 bucks. I know New England brewing makes one hell of an IPA with its Sea Hag, and from what I have tasted, one of the best double IPAs in the country with Gandhi Bot, but with Neighbor of the Beast, it just falls short from the insane expectations I have for this brewery. I’m also thinking that maybe the bitterness of the hops disguises the the aluminumy taste the can may give off, but then again I could be dreaming that up. Neighbor of the beast gets a final grade of a B. When you consider it’s price and flavor, its nothing more than your average Joe who’s pictured on the side of the can. I do give points for creativity on name and design, but as mom always said, it’s what’s on the inside that counts.