The Specs: Bad Tattoo Brewing Co. (Penticton, B.C.) Los Muertos Cerveza Negro
650mL, 5 per cent ABV
Bad Riders, we’ve been apart too long. Between the election I’ve been covering for my day job and a trip back to Alberta (where I drank much craft beer but made few notes), this blog hasn’t got its usual loving.
Luckily my fridge still contained one bottle that didn’t make the trip back to Wildrose country with the others on my top shelf. Why?
Well… ok. It’s shallow, but direct your eyeballs to the photo on the right side of the screen. Now look at that packaging.
As the B.C. brewering field gets more and more crowded, more and more brewing companies are stepping up their design. To pick a notable example, Fernie Brewing Co. went from a more homespun label to a modern, colour-blocked approach this year, briefly making me think the brewery might have something more exciting to offer than in years past (spoiler: not really).
Bad Tattoo’s label, by contrast, feels pretty dated compared to bottles from Barkerville, Tofino, Central City and other breweries that have passed through my kitchen as of late. With a teensy, hard to read logo and an awkward layout featuring an undersized picture it doesn’t speak of confidence and care.
Which is a shame, because Los Muertos Cerveza Negro is actually pretty good.
The taste profile is similar to quite a few of the stouts and porters I’ve been drinking as winter sets in — malty, with a mild milk chocolate flavour and some sweetness — but with a much lighter mouthfeel, hint of acid and enough of a hoppy finish to make it clear you’re drinking a lager.
And compared to your average stout it’s wildly carbonated. My bottle in particular was so fizzy that even a week’s rest in the fridge wasn’t enough to keep it from exploding a bit when I popped the cap.
Overall, it was a pleasant surprise. I’ll have to keep my eye on these guys after all. According to the company’s website, Bad Tattoo also does apple soda and rootbeer brewed in house, which I’m embarrassed to admit I want to taste even more than the rest of their beer lineup. Would that the craft soda market were half as well developed in B.C.