Origin: Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Date: 7 August 2000
Another review from the archive written for the Oxford Bottled Beer Database (OBBD), a pioneering crowd-sourced beer review website founded in 1992, and predating the likes of Ratebeer and Beer Advocate. I’ve left it uncorrected — so please read it in that historical spirit. Interestingly I focused on the hops which are modest by today’s standards, though this was one of the earliest hop-forward beers in contemporary Dutch brewing. Brouwerij ‘t IJ is still very much with us, though it’s expanded from its original site under a windmill on Funenkade to a production brewery on Zeeburgerpad. In September 2015, it entered into a partnership with Belgian ‘new national’ brewer Duvel-Moortgat.
This, one of the renowned Amsterdam brewpub’s seasonal brews, cropped up at the Catford Beer Festival 2000. As usual, the name is a pun on the similar sounds of the Dutch word ‘ei’ meaning egg and ‘t Ij, the name of the watercourse overlooked by the brewery itself. ‘Paasei’ is an Easter egg and the characteristic diamond shaped label comes complete with a drawing of an easter bunny that appears to have an egg swelling out of its chest.
The beer has a light citric hoppy aroma, slightly phenolic, with a rich dark orange-grapefruit palate, turning intensely hoppy. The finish at first is slightly sweet and sherbety but soon becomes mouth-numbing with an onslaught of lingering bitter hop. The hops are so intense that they arguably knock the balance out slightly, since despite its strength the beer doesn’t have quite enough body to support them. Nonetheless, another intriguing and characterful brew from a very reliable source.