• Battle of the Heathens – we taste Monk's cannabis oil collab beer

Battle of the Heathens – we taste Monk's cannabis oil collab beer

11 July 2019 by Neil Sowerby

NORTHERN Monk’s NQ Refectory Bar is a good fit for the old Kosmonaut premises, their core beer range popular, limited issue keg collabs such as The Patron’s Project gathering a cult following.

Nothing though had prepared us for the prospect of the Leeds-based brewers’ latest partnership – with speciality cannabis craft beer producers, Green Times Brewing, who have a base in Manchester.

That’s why, in the interest of research, we have lined up on the counter of the Tariff Street tap a glass of their award-winning Heathen IPA alongside a glass of Green Heathen that contains 10mg of CBD (cannabidiol) per pint, a legal and highly popular supplement derived from the cannabis plant. Yes, it’s not illegal, can’t get you high and its 250,000 UK users claim it improves general health and well-being.

The jury’s out on that one for ToM as we compare flavours under the expert high of bar manager Sam Johnson. he identifies a certain resiny dankness in the CBD version of the NE style IPA. Dank is good in contemporary craft beer circles. Certainly it seems to go with the cloudy characteristics expected of such a beer. The standard Heathen, at around the same 7% alcohol level seems less  laid-back, more hoppy bitterness in there. We marhinally prefer Green Heathen

We ask Ian if it’s flying out of the taps. “It’s doing well since we put it on on Friday, July 6. It’s based on a great beer recipe anyway and people are curious about it. If you wish to try it I’d get down before the weekend. A one-off, when it’s gone it’s gone. It won’t be available in can.”

Certainly the link-up with high profile Northern Monk, one of the UK’s top craft brewers take sit out of the niche market for CBD beers. Green Times launched in September 2018 High Flyer, the UK’s first session IPA with water-soluble cannabis oil, available in bottle form.

Their release says: “As both CBD and hops originate from the same plant family, they are symbiotic by nature. Green Heathen boasts a broad-spectrum CBD oil, so it’s jam-packed with a range of naturally occurring terpenoids, cannabinoids and flavonoids.”

Northern Monk founder Russell Bisset is  believer“We always aim to be progressive in our approach to brewing, and we believe that CBD has real, tangible health benefits. The collaboration with Green Times Brewing gave us the opportunity to brew a groundbreaking beer.”

One possible plus? Green Times claim: “It’s possible that by boosting liver function, CBD can help the liver process alcohol more effectively, thus reducing hangovers.” 

Let’s try out those two Heathens again, Sam?

Green Times Brewing collaborate with Northern Monk to create a 7.2% CBD IPA