Well after a week of the diseased state that was my house it appears there is hope. I guess you could say both kids aren’t as full of snot and in a better mood. With that being said let’s have a celebratory beer! Specifically speaking No Lux from Hamburg Brewing Company. A Black IPA that I crossed paths with last year but never got around to writing about. So when I found it on the shelves again I knew it had to be done. The can caught my eye and never loosened its grip. And what better time than now, the transition into an earlier sunset and later sunrise; more darkness existing throughout the day.
The Beer: No Lux by Hamburg Brewing Company
Style: Black IPA
ABV: 7% IBU: 65
Malts: Two Row
If you look at Hamburg Brewing Company’s website in the beer section you will find No Lux in the ‘Vaulted’ category. Have no fear though, it’s not in full retirement but still limited in its availability. Once you click on the tab you will a description of what secrets you will find hiding in the dark.
‘Our appropriately named Black India Pale Ale is far from pale. Dark as night, No Lux is packed with roasted malt flavor and tons of hops built for the adventurous beer drinker. At first sip a low to medium body is noticed followed by a robust roasted character with a hop dominated finish.’
There are no surprises when pouring No Lux into a glass and you get a black as night appearance. There is no light at the end of this tunnel, well besides a delicious beer waiting to be consumed. Very nice use of the Black Prinz malts. To top it off there is a nice creamy head that seems to be lingering for quite some time.
The aromas are not crazy strong or jumping out too much. But once they hit you there is an instant sense of relief and relaxation. An over all roasted, nature like feel to the aromas, though there are some layers to swim through. The strongest of the aromas and first to be noticed is a pleasant citrus aroma. Then there is a soft pine accent that drifts in and out providing a nice floral, woodsy feel. Finally there is a soft roasted backbone. The strength of the roasted aroma isn’t as strong as one would think with such a dark beer as a Black IPA. But honestly it’s the perfect amount.
Though the aromas may not be the strongest, their presence gives No Lux a soft and refreshing first impression. The black out color allows for an intriguing appearance with the aromas softening things up, leaving you in a sense of wonder.
Join The Dark Side
There is much to enjoy while drinking a No Lux. There isn’t a plethora of flavors you have to fight through but excellent transitions throughout the entire sip. What’s even more enjoyable is that you can match them up with the aromas. Bringing the beer full circle.
In the beginning of the sip there is a combination of citrus and dank flavors. The two of them coincide together and give a slight resinous feeling to No Lux. This does momentarily subsides allowing for a slightly softer though medium bodied mouthfeel. As well as the ‘robust roasted’ characteristic that Hamburg spoke of in their description of No Lux. It’s not a strong overwhelming roasted coffee flavor. But a very pleasant overall roasted feel that really enhances the flavor composition of No Lux.
The most interesting part of No Lux transpires after the mid sip. Once I thought I fully grasped the roasted flavor it was just as quickly taken away. From here there was a quick drop off of the roasted flavor in exchange for that strong ‘hop dominated finish.’ Though the aftertaste is not a one trick pony. As strong as the citrus and dank hop bitterness may be, there was some how a way for the roasted flavor to creep back into existence. It not may not be the main character at this point of the story but does well sitting in the background as a supportive role. As time goes on the aftertaste tends to mellow out leaving very subtle dank and roasted notes to linger on. The Rye malts provide an interesting mouthfeel as well in the aftertaste. One I haven’t seen as often but enough to make note of it. Complimenting the lingering roasted notes is a dry mouthfeel that is really sticking with me. It’s not a cotton mouth feel but one that an experienced beer drinker would know there was Rye malt used in the brewing process. A very nice touch that gives No Lux a unique presence among its fellow IPA friends.
The first time I had a can of No Lux was last year and I missed it very much. As I said before I was very pleased to see it released again filling up the shelves. The overall nature of No Lux is very intriguing. Starting off with its aroma and appearance and ending with a delicious aftertaste that leaves you craving for more. I’ve only had one or two other Black IPA’s and No Lux takes the gold. If you’re one that enjoys IPA’s but desires a bit of variety No Lux is a beer you don’t want to miss out on.
Thanks for reading.