As you may or may not know I sometimes get invited along to events to see what a place is doing, try a new menu or in this case try a few drinks. Not just any drinks mind, these were amazing drinks. I went to the Obar last year to review the now permanent in-house restaurant ‘the smokehouse‘; a deep south american eatery of the finest kind. If you haven’t been before then please for the love of all things braised and pulled go, it is brilliant.
This time round I was asked to come and sample the Obar’s new craft beer range and to test out there bar snack range supplied by the aforementioned smokehouse. First off I should say the range of beers on offer is staggering, I didn’t realise how many they had until I got there. 20 different bottled beers, 14 on draft and 2 ales, plus some ciders thrown in for good measure. If you are a connoisseur of beers and ales then this is your nirvana.
I couldn’t try all of them so don’t ask me what they were all like, but the ones I did try were really good, my favourite was the CHP Chocolate hazelnut porter a beer that was just as the tasting notes described, ‘dessert in a glass'; smooth and chocolately with just a backnote of coffee and hazelnut. I loved it so much I had 2! (Sshhhhhhh). Next up was the belhaven, a light crisp IPA that again was smoother than a tiger in a tuxedo, and at 4.8% was a little lighter on the alcohol. Another IPA I tried was the Jaipur india pale ale at 5.9%, a citrusy and very hoppy beer which some might find too strong, I however, loved it.
Then I had the Red seal Pale ale at 5.4%, a sort of cross between a light ale and a porter with a kick of spice about it, which would go well with a good steak. Next I tried the Captain black IPA at 7.6%, not one for the faint hearted I can tell you, delicious as it was I could certainly feel the alcohol kicking it at this point but, like a professional I soldiered on. It was full, rich and – dare I say – chewy, bit of citrus and chocolate in there too. I managed to get in one last drink before I decided I’d had enough, and that was an absolutely gorgeous Rutland cider. Not one for the fizzy pop lovers as this one is still, but it was so light and smooth and tasted of, well….apples, great alcoholic apples.
As I was quaffing all this lovely beer I got to sample the new bar menu provided by the smokehouse. Some amazing smoked braised ribs, sticky spicy chicken wings, little mini prawn cocktails, pulled pork served in mini yorkshire puddings – a great an idea that I’m going to steal! We had pastrami and grilled haloumi served on little toasted buns, and Marmite cheese straws which were unbelievably moreish, they were a sort of cross between a twiglet and a cheese straw.
I had a brilliant evening, I wandered out a little bleary eyed I have to say, but that’s my stamina for you. I like what these guys are doing, it’s different from your average bar and I have yet to see anyone in Leicester doing something like it. This is what our city needs, people who are willing to go to new lengths, step outside of the ordinary and produce something exciting, you can get a pint of the fizzy pop any day of the week, but if you want a treat – and yes you deserve one – then go down and seem them, you won’t be disappointed.
For more information go to there website or just go down and see them at 59-61 Braunstone gate Leicester, open 4:30pm – 2 am.