Recent dwellers of the Bradleys fridge (and about to start a chain-reaction of posts that I've been putting off for aeons) are these two cans from Lervig, another one of them cool Scandinavian craft brewers.
The fisherman chic reels you in and the promise of hops is clear; Lucky Jack is an American Pale Ale and the red, also ostensibly American in style, is Hoppy Joe.
Lucky Jack isn't very lucky at all, it turns out; it's a rather tame and unexciting standard pale ale that fails to reach the heights of, say, Howling Gale, my benchmark for non-American American pale ales. Instead it offers a generally gristy and lightly citrusy affair that's easy drinking, if not very (or indeed at all) engaging.
There's not a lot more to be had from Hoppy Joe. Particularly hoppy it itsn't, but red it is. It's not squeaky clean on the nose, being a bit gristy (again) and leafy, with some happier flashes of orange. It starts well enough on the palate, with thickish toffee malt propping up orange and lemon highlights before, oh, no, a mucky, rubbery finish? Did I pour too hard? Is it even can conditioned? I don't know, possibly, but a long burnt rubber bitter finish has me throwing in the towel and pouring the rest away.
Fear not though, I assure you we'll have much more joy from Lervig next time around.