Thursday, 31 December 2015

Cliff Quay – Seadog

WP_20151223_20_08_09_ProWhat they say: “A strong Pale ale with a light amber colour. Brewed with lashings of hops to produce a balanced but drinkable strong pale ale, with a prominent floral fruity aroma, a clean malty palate and a satisfying crisp bitter finish. Ha ha me hearties!”

Well, the very last entry of 2015 is from Suffolk, and was sadly disappointing, because on opening it was as flat as a pancake, so it’s not fair to pass judgement on it. Will track another down at some point.

So that’s it for now. Happy New Year Everyone. Here’s to 2016 and a busy year of ‘research’.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Earl Soham – Victoria Bitter (mini-cask)

WP_20151223_09_49_31_ProWhat they say? Well nothing. As I’ve mentioned before, this great  brewery from Suffolk don’t muck about with flashy websites. They just brew beer. Have tried the cask version – and loving it, the mini-cask didn’t disappoint either. Very easy to set up too. A very fine pint indeed. 3.6% A.B.V.

Gadds – Little Cracker

IMAG0356What they say: “Our yule special is crafted with crystalised rye malt for a bright red berry flavour and well bittered with a melange of the spicier Kent hops to lend a distinctively festive character to this unique ale”

Well, I certainly got the bitter but didn’t pick up very much of the red berry flavour. It didn’t taste as ‘Christmasy’ as I expected, but a perfectly drinkable pint. 5.0% A.B.V.

The Red Lion, Ramsgate, Kent. December 2015

Gadds – No.5 Best Bitter

IMAG0357What they say: “The aroma is toffee malt and fresh green hops with a full body and lingering bitter finish”

I was so pleased to come across this on or first ‘research’ expedition whilst staying in Ramsgate. I’d already tried the bottled version back in March and that was lovely – read my entry HERE. I wasnt disappaointed in the cask version either, it was as I remembered it – very tasty indeed. At 4.5% A.B.V it was full of flavour but not one to be taken too lightly.

Sir Stanley Gray, Ramsgate, Kent. December 2015

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Earl Soham – Brandeston Gold

WP_20151223_20_07_54_ProWhat they say? There’s not much on the brewery website at all – but then this is a small local brewery who clearly concentrate their efforts on brewing. www.guestales.co.uk say this though: “A burnished gold coloured beer, full-bodied with a warming fruity aroma and a deep resinous malt flavour. Uses barley grown for the brewery at Brandeston.”

I’m not a particular fan of golden ales as regulars will know, but I liked this one. I didn’t find it too citrusy or flowery like some golds. Another great find from our time in Suffolk. 4.5% A.B.V

The brewery shop, Debenham, Suffolk. December 2015.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Cliff Quay – Bitter

WP_20151218_21_12_26_ProWhat they say: “Brewed with pale, crystal and black malts, this is an amber coloured classic bitter beer. It has a glorious fragrant honey sweet aroma with hints of citrus fruits. Deep malty depths of flavour and hints of marmalade and toffee balanced with a refreshing bitterness combine to produce a satisfying drinkable beer.“

Originally brewed on the site of the old Tolly Cobbold brewery in Ipswich by this relatively young (2009) Brewery – but don’t let that put you off. It’s taste belied it’s strength and this was a very drinkable beer indeed. And at just 3.4% A.B.V it’s not going to have you reaching for the paracetamol too often.

Earl Soham brewery shop, Debenham, Suffolk. December 2015

Earl Soham – Sir Roger’s Porter

IMAG0252What they say? Again nothing on the brewery’s web site, but www.perfectpint.co.uk quote this: “Black, full bodied and can be sweet. Brewed using pale malt, crystal malt, chocolate malt, and roasted barley, with mostly Fuggles hops and a few Goldings.”

Not my usual ale of choice but I do like a porter every so often and this one didn’t disappoint. Like it’s stablemate Victoria Bitter, sampled just around the corner from the brewery so it was in excellent condition. 4.2% A.B.V

The Woolpack, Debenham, Suffolk. December 2015

Earl Soham – Victoria Bitter

IMAG0249What they say? Well, not a lot on their website but the chaps as www.perfectpint.co.uk quote this: “ Light, hoppy and bitter. Brewed using a standard pale malt and crystal malt mix with Goldings and Fuggles hops.”

Well, I didn’t find it too hoppy, in fact I thoroughly enjoyed it, helped no doubt by the fact that it was brewed about half a mile up the road from where we were drinking it. A great beer from this local Suffolk Brewer and at 3.6% A.B.V not to strong either.

The Wooldpack, Debenham, Suffolk. December 2015

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Greene King – Suffolk Springer

WP_20151214_16_43_19_ProWhat they say? Well, I couldn’t find a single mention of it on Greene King’s website. However, this is the description on www.ratebeer.com “A 6% abv dark ale is created using a traditional brewing method of making two beers of different character and strength, which are then blended together. The beer takes its name from the racing term ’Springer’, a racehorse whose odds dramatically shorten before the race. “

Ok, that don’t tell you too much but what we have is a premium dark ale that went down quite well – perhaps too well for something approaching double the strength of a lot of beers. A nice winter warmer but I didn’t find it particularly outstanding. December 2015

Monday, 21 December 2015

Woodforde’s - Wherry

WP_20151215_13_38_41_ProWhat they say: “Fresh and zesty with crisp floral flavours. A background of sweet malt and a hoppy 'grapefruit' bitter finish characterises this champion bitter.”

Not sure about the grapefruit bit but nevertheless this is a lovely pint from the popular Norfolk brewery, sampled over the border in Suffolk on the first ‘research’ expedition of our winter getaway. I’m sure I’ve had it before but it must have been before the Ale Archive was born. Nothing fancy but a good drinkable session bitter. 3.8% A.B.V

The Highwayman, Suffolk. December 2015.

White Horse – Champion the Wonder Horse

WP_20151211_19_26_18_ProWhat they say: “A deep rich red beer with a dominant roasted character, and a smooth biscuit aftertaste on the palate.”

Another nice pint guesting at the same time as the Inn Keeper from Long Man at our local. On balance that was still my favourite and this didn’t quite pass the Harveys Sussex Best test but it was a nice pint all the same. 4.5% A.B.V. Our last pint in our local before we headed off on our travels for Christmas.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. December 2015.

Long Man – Inn Keeper

WP_20151211_19_26_11_ProWhat they say: “A fruity winter ale with a deep red hue and delicious warming flavours from a blend of six speciality malts that combine with festive fruit aromas and balanced bitterness to finish.”

Oh yum. Yum yum yum. Yes, I loved this, and would happily drink this all the time. These winter warmer style ales can sometimes be excessively sweet and fruity. This wasn’t, it was just gorgeous. The latest to guest at our local, it passed the Harvey Sussex Best test – yes I would swap to this. Another local brewery too, so even better.

The Rottingdean Club, Sussex. December 2015

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Glamorgan – Bluestone Bitter/Cwrw Gorslas

WP_20151128_18_57_48_Pro What they say: “A bitter with an accomplished balance of spicy resinous hop aroma. The bitterness remains into the finish with dry fruit notes alongside subtle undertones of roasted flavours. Known as Bluestone Bitter in England and Cwrw Gorslas in Wales”

I am grateful to the website www.ratebeer.com for the above as I couldn’t find a listing for Bluestone Bitter on the brewery’s website. Another guest at our local this was a lovely pint – everything I enjoyed about a beer. It has ousted – temporarily the regular and always excellent Harveys Best as my ale of choice. 4.0% A.B.V so not too potent, but very enjoyable indeed.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. November 2015

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Greene King – Churchill IPA

WP_20151123_19_37_12_Pro What they say: “The 4.2% abv golden ale is brewed with a total of seven hops and ‘dry hopped’ with East Kent Goldings, in a nod to the county that Churchill made home.  Described as a fresh, fruity and hoppy India Pale Ale, it will be available on the bar from May to August in over 475 Greene King pubs across Britain.”

And November as well apparently. I liked this and didn’t find it overly fruity, even the Blogger in Black’s Portly Partner liked it and he’s no fan of overly hoppy beer either. The A.B.V is about as high as I’d want to go if having a few. Served a little too cold but then ales here generally are sadly, and a pity there was no proper pump clip.

The Spanish Lady, Saltdean, East Sussex. November 2015

Greene King – Black IPA

WP_20151121_12_54_53_Pro What they say: “A robust IPA packed with hops for citrus and tropical fruits and spicy notes, full bodied and malty with a satisfying bitter linger”

The most regular of our locals – The Rottingdean Club – has three hand pumps and now with the withdrawal of the lovely but potent Abbot Ale, there are now two guest alongside the always excellent Harveys Sussex Best. So even more opportunities for research. Excellent.

I enjoyed this a lot more than I expected too – the citrus and tropical notes mentioned above were not overly prominent and it was certainly full bodied – almost a meal in a glass. Did I have another? No, but as I said, there are now two guests needing my attention! Look forward to coming across this again – maybe at the weekend if they still have it!

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. November 2015

Charles Wells - Poppy

WP_20151115_13_43_22_Pro What they say: “…..a ‘crisp, nutty, amber bitter, with great flavour. There are heaps of fresh green Challenger hops above toasted toffee malt, with a real quenching finish”

The result of a collaboration with Enterprise Inns, 10p from every pint sold goes to the Royal British Legion. Easy drinking at just 3.6% A.B.V and a nice all round pint although a little too hoppy for me.

The Queen Victoria, Rottingdean, East Sussex. November 2015

Otter – Silver Otter

WP_20151115_13_02_59_Pro What they say: “Crisp light session beer with spicy, citrus overtones.”

I've not had a bad pint from Otter so far and this was no exception. It was pale but the citrus wasn’t overpowering. I am assuming a special as I could fine no mention of it on the brewery’s website. If anyone can advise, please let me know. 4.0% A.B.V.

The Queen Victoria, Rottingdean, East Sussex. November 2015

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Marks & Spencer – Sussex Golden Ale

WP_20151029_15_21_53_ProWhat they say  “Delivers a refreshing flavour and a traditional Sussex 'hoppy nose'.”

Sadly the full description is wrong as it refers to a beer brewed in Essex, however this comes from the Hepworth Brewery in West Sussex. Enjoyable it was too, though a little too hoppy for me. Very drinkable though and light enough to enjoy a few at a party. 3.8% A.B.V.

Saltaire – Cascade Pale Ale

WP_20151023_23_20_40_ProWhat they say: “American style pale ale with the floral aromas and strong bitterness of Cascade and Centennial hops.”

Yep, not really my cup of tea, but it was a gift and I was happy to try it. 4.8% A.B.V, so not one to slosh back, unless you like paracetamol.

Morland (Greene King) – Old Spirited Hen

WP_20151108_15_12_23_Pro What they say: “Old Spirited Hen has a rich toffee aroma with a hint of green apple.  The apple and toffee blend with fruity esters and malty richness for a thoroughly satisfying beer.”

Another guest at our local, and I quite enjoyed this as a one off – a real winter warmer at 4.7% A.B.V.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. November 2015

Otter - Bitter

WP_20151108_15_12_08_ProWhat they say: “Otter Bitter is our 'session' beer. We understand the importance of keeping those customers who prefer lower gravity beer satisfied - Otter Bitter does just that.It is a beautifully light and fruity with good hoppy bitterness. It leaves a refreshing bitterness which prompts the next gulp. A wonderful, old fashioned, 'session' beer. Brewed for drinking with no frills.”

Couldn’t agree more. Nothing fancy, just a good tasty pint that isn’t too strong. Lovely. Another welcome guest at our local. 3.6% A.B.V.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. November 2015

Flack’s Double Drop

WP_20151030_19_56_38_Pro

What they say: “A classic amber bitter with the full flavour of Maris Otter barley and the bitter citrus after notes of Sovereign hops”

Whether it was the accompanying food – burger one night, smothered chicken the next, or just the ambience – a great traditional boozer in the New Forest – this was delicious. Work commitments early next day stopped me from further ‘research’ but this was truly a delicious pint. 3.7% A.B.V.

The New Forest Inn, Emery Down, the New Forest. October 2015

Marstons – New World

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What they say: “A gleaming pale gold in colour, New World Pale Ale has a fantastic fruity flavour with blasts of tropical peaches, apricot, melon and passionfruit. All delivered with a creamy, white head and light, zesty aroma”

Now, I’m going to sound like an old fart here, but peaches?Apricot? I thought it was supposed to be a beer. Anyway, no, as you may have already guessed, not my thing. Maybe a good crossover for the lager boys though? Easy drinking at least at 3.8% A.B.V.

The Owl, Tamworth. October 2015.

Roosters - Yankee

WP_20151022_20_39_11_ProWhat they say: “One of the original, new-style, pale ales to be brewed in the UK, Yankee™ is a modern classic. Light and easy-drinking, it’s a beer that showcases the floral and citrus fruit aromas of the Cascade hop, grown in the Yakima Valley in Washington State, USA, projected against a back drop of soft Yorkshire water and golden promise pale malt.”

Floral and citrus? Yep, regulars will have guessed that it wasn’t for me, but it had to be tried – in the name of research, obviously. 4.3% A.B.V.

The Dog & Doublet, Bodymoor Heath, Tamworth. October 2015.

Banks’s - Bitter

WP_20151022_18_27_42_Pro What they say: “Crafted with the finest ingredients to deliver a really easy drinking beer. A deep gold in colour it comes with malty, hoppy flavours and clean finish with fruity overtones. Great with a packet of pork scratchings or a hot pie.”

Well, I had it with a gammon steak – and loved it. Nothing fancy, just a good honest session bitter. Would happily drink again. Found on our recent trip to Kingsbury Water Park in the Midlands, so the price was good too – for us southerners anyway! 3.8% A.B.V

The Royal Oak, Kingsbury, Tamworth, Warwickshire. October 2015

Greene King – London Glory

WP_20151019_18_51_55_Pro What they say: “A celebratory ale created by the master brewers of Greene King for the nation's capital city. Centuries of expertise and craftsmanship have come together to produce this rich and fruity brew that combines crystal malt with challenger and goldings hops.”

Guesting at one of our ‘locals’ – I quite enjoyed this, although it did taste remarkably similar to their IPA to me, but at 4.0% A.B.V a little more full bodied. Served a little too cold sadly but it was ok.

The Spanish Lady, Saltdean. September 2015

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Otter – Amber

WP_20151015_19_36_28_ProWhat they say: The special Cara malt and carefully selected hops in Amber deliver a finely balanced bitter flavour, with hints of tropical fruit and spice sometimes even an impression of ginger.

Well, it’s been a while hasn’t it? Although don’t think for a minute that I’ve gone without since my last post although for a while red wine replaced real ale as we trundled around France during our school summer holidays. And since we’ve been back – the end of August I’ve been less than adventurous sticking to the excellent Harvey’s Sussex Best on all too rare visits to a local hostelry.

This was – as regular followers might guess – a little too pale for me and served perhaps a little too cold, more suited I reckon to a warm summers night than a chilly October one. A good good crossover for the lager boys though. 4.0% A.B.V.

The Spanish Lady, Saltdean, East Sussex. October 2015

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Langham - Best Bitter

WP_20150630_002What they say: A tawny-coloured classic best beer with well-balanced malt flavours, finished with a hint of blackcurrant and a slightly spicy, sweet aroma.

One of my last tastes of ‘proper beer’ before we headed off to France - which is where this blog is coming from. Nice but a little on the sweet side for me. I went back to the ever excellent Harvey’s Sussex Best for the second pint. Not bad though but at 4.5% A.B.V a bit on the strong side for a session beer - for me anyway. From just over the border in West Sussex, so it didn’t have to travel far.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. June 2015

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Lacons - Falcon Ale

WP_20150620_001What they say: “A time honoured classic dark bitter with an auburn glint. Elaborately balanced use of hops and malt paves the way to complex flavours which are charming and lightly spiced. The finish is perfectly balanced between fruitiness and bitterness”.

The very latest to guest at our local and a mighty fine pint it was too. The only thing that stopped it trumping the ever excellent Harvey’s Sussex Best was the the slightly off putting perfume like aroma. Other than that - terrific. 4.2% A.B.V

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. June 2015

Milestone Brewery - Lion’s Pride

WP_20150607_003What they say: “A Copper coloured Session Ale. Well balanced Light & refreshing”.

On offer at our local and yep, as you may have guessed from the above, not really one for me. A good summer ale without doubt but a bit too fruity for me. Would appeal to lager drinkers looking to spread their wings I would think. 3.8% A.B.V

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. June 2015.

Goldstone Brewery - Beacon

WP_20150607_001What they say: “This is a well balanced amber ale in the style of a traditional Best Bitter. There is a  maltiness on the palate with a pleasant dry, bitter finish.”

Back home in Sussex we found this guesting in the Queen Vic in Rottingdean. Brewed just up the road in Ditchling this is one of the best beers I’ve ever tasted. A classic Best Bitter and it it really hit the spot. A great offering from this young brewery.

The Queen Victoria, Rottingdean, East Sussex. June 2015

Wickwar Brewing Co. - Bob

WP_20150527_002What they say: “A distinct blend of hops, malt and citrus fruits. The slightly sweet taste turns into a fine, dry bitterness with a lasting finish. Very moreish and an award winning classic ale. Our brand leader”.

Another good find on our recent ‘TwitterCamp’ meet in Moreton-in-Marsh. Yes, it was slightly sweet and that put me off just a little but it didn’t stop me having a pint or several most nights. 4% A.B.V.

The Swan Inn Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire. May 2015

Sunday, 14 June 2015

North Cotswold Brewery - Shag Weaver

WP_20150527_001What they say: A pale hoppy bitter brewed with a blend of three New Zealand hops. Appeals to both ale and lager drinkers alike. Also great with spicy food.Sounds a bit naughty but it’s not! The Brewery is located a few miles from Shipston on Stour a historic wool market town and staging post for stagecoaches. The name Shipston is derived from Scepwaeisctune, Old English for Sheep-wash-Town. “Shag” is an old English word meaning a heavy or rough woolenfabric. So Shagweaver literally means “wool weaver”

OK, but it didn't particularly appeal to this ale drinker, but then regulars will know that I like my ale darker and not too hoppy. A good summer ale I guess  but at 4.5% A.B.V. not one to be taken lightly.

The Swan Inn, Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire. May 2015

Donnington Brewery - BB

WP_20150526_001 What they say: A pleasant amber bitter with a slight hop aroma, a good balance of malt and hops in the mouth and a bitter aftertaste.

I remember drinking this on our previous visit a couple of years ago, and I remembering enjoying it too. Very quaffable, a great session beer – and VERY keenly priced – for those of us from the rip-off south east anyway. 3.6% A.B.V

The Black Bear Inn, Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire. May 2015

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Brains - On The Fence

WP_20150510_003What they say: A beer to win your vote, well balanced and copper coloured, brewed with pale ale and crystal malts and British Archer and Minstrel hops. Floral aromas and flavours of spiced berry fruit, orange and lime are complimented by the sweet malty character and balanced bitterness of this satisfying beer.

Another pub in Rottingdean that keeps an ever changing selection of real ales is the Queen Victoria and this ale provided the liquid accompaniment for an excellent Sunday lunch. A nice all round pint and the floral aromas alluded to above didn’t penetrate my nasal passages too much! 4.1% A.B.V.

The Queen Victoria, Rottingdean, East Sussex. May 2015

The Mermaid House Ale

WP_20150509_001Maybe I need to brush up my search skills but I couldn’t find any mention of this anywhere. There wasn’t even a listing on Perfect Pint, however since it was sampled on a rare visit to the White Horse in Rottingdean, which is an ‘Olde English’ brand owned of course by Greene King it’s a little easier to guess it’s provenance.

Rebadged IPA it wasn’t - lighter in colour and flavour - a very easy drinking pint that’s unlikely to offend - or excite - many palates. 3.9% A.B.V.

The White Horse, Rottingdean, East Sussex. May 2015.

Caledonian - Flying Scotsman

WP_20150424_001What they say: 1st Class Refreshment. A sophisticated full-flavoured premium bitter combining the best barley from the north & robust southern hops. Profoundly malty in aroma but balanced with hints of raisins, spice and toasty dryness.

Guesting at our occasional Friday night after work haunt The Spanish Lady. Served a little too cold but otherwise everything I like about a beer. Would happily drink again. And again. 4% A.B.V.

The Spanish Lady, Saltdean, East Sussex. April 2015

Batemans - Eggs-B

WP_20150406_001What they say: A chocolate coloured beer brewed with dark ,succulent chocolate malts and real cocoa nibs which give a real fruity indulgent cocoa flavour, fused with chunky hop flavours.

Our return to our local The Rottingdean Club after our schools Easter holiday found this seasonal offering as the current guest ale. A bit of coincidence considering we’d recently been in Batemans country in Lincolnshire.

Yes, I enjoyed it but in preference to the regular and excellent Harveys Best? No, not quite. 4.2% A.B.V.

Rottingdean, East Sussex. April 2015

 

Nethergate - Umbel

WP_20150403_001What they say: We've been messing around with coriander in beer since 1988, just as they did back in the 1700's. The coriander in our multi-award winning Umbel Ale gives a floral aroma, fruity tang and a well-rounded finish.

Thirst quenching and absolutely cracking with spicy food. The beer writer Michael Jackson said of this amber beer: "This astonishingly fresh-tasting, bone-dry lemony brew is addictive and appetising: a distinctive arid beautiful beer".

Yes, pleasant and refreshing and ideal for summer but regulars will know that it’s not really to my taste. 3.8% A.B.V. The last beer on our Easter getaway sadly.

Nottingham. April 2015

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Hardy & Hanson - Olde Trip

WP_20150402_002What they say: …….this is a rich, toffee-flavoured beer bursting with fruity character that is perfectly balanced with a clean, bitter finish.

Taking it’s name from the famous ‘Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem’ in Nottingham and that’s where we found it. Ale heads will know that it’s actually brewed by Greene King, once a little Suffolk brewery but now seemingly intent on world domination. They also own the pub. Credit where it’s due though, this was a fine pint and at 4.3& A.B.V not too strong for a few - although circumstances prohibited testing that particular theory!

Nottingham. March 2015

The Nottingham Brewery - Legend Best

WP_20150402_001What they say: A traditional amber-coloured session ale with a flavoursome malt character and lively hoppy finish...a beer that will be talked about for generations.

Originally established in 1847, the name was revived in 2001 in the form of a micro brewery housed in a former pub. We came across this in the famous ‘ Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem’ reported to be the oldest pub in England. Yeah, another one.

With at least eight hand pumps there was a wide choice for the ale head but this one - chosen by the other half didn’t disappoint 4.0% A.B.V so a nice balance of strength and flavour.

Nottingham. March 2015

Wychwood - Imperial Red

WP_20150331_001What they say: Do not fear the Imperial Red who comes in peace to liberate your taste buds with his robust yet succulent beer.

A toasted malt flavour balanced by a bold pronounced hop delivered in a rich ruby 4.7% abv beer.

I’ve always liked Wychwoods more famous Hobgoblin - not least because a certain German supermarket sells it for a very reasonable price - and was glad of the chance to try another one of their beers particularly on draught.

As I’ve said before I got a taste for red ales from Ireland and this didn't disappoint though it’s no lightweight and despite being hand pulled was a little too gassy for my taste. Nonetheless, very enjoyable.

Mansfield, March 2015

Ruddles - Best

WP_20150403_003What they say? Couldn’t tell you right now as clicking on the link delivers one of those ‘404’ errors. However Prefect Pint comes to the rescue again with this: Aroma of soft fruit notes. Hoppy, citrus undertones balanced with bitterness and a light sweetness.

You’ll find this on draught in practically every Wetherspoons and I’ve drunk it in that form many times in the past. Originally brewed in Rutland, but now in Suffolk by Greene King, it’s pleasant without being outstanding and at 3.7% A.B.V a great session beer and if you get a load in for a party it’s flavour is unlikely to offend anyone.

Wold Top - Headland Red

WP_20150403_004What they say: A red beer to halt you in your tracks, giving you a warm red glow!  A mellow malty flavour, from Wold grown barley, dark crystal malt and roasted barley.

Hopped with Progress hops.

The best beer to use for ‘beef in beer’.

Having enjoyed their excellent Bitter whilst in North Yorkshire I was looking forward to sampling another one of their brews. I got quite a taste for red ales whilst in Ireland and this too hit the spot. 4.3% A.B.V so flavoursome  but not too strong. Definitely one that you don’t want to over chill or you’ll lose those wonderful rich warming flavours.

North Yorkshire. March 2015

Cropton - Yorkshire Moors

WP_20150330_011What they say: Subtle blend of malts dark in colour with hoppy and fruity aftertaste with a bittersweet finish

Another one from this micro brewery formed in 2012. A beautiful ruby colour but the fruity aftertaste was just a little too pronounced for me. 4.6% A.B.V

Robin Hoods Bay, North Yorkshire. March 2015.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Cottage Brewery - Big Ben

WP_20150330_008Found in the Bacchus Hotel alongside their own Bacchus Bitter   from this Somerset based brewer.

Nothing on their website at all but the good folk at Perfect Pint say this: A mid red strong ale. Traditional, Tasty, well balanced & wonderfully hopped.

Nice enough but at 4.9% A.B.V it soon crept up on you. Would avoid for something weaker.

The Bacchus Hotel, Sutton-on-Sea, Lincolnshire. March 2015

Batemans - XB

WP_20150329_010What they say: Classic amber, English pale ale crafted by the fusion of luscious English Golding and Challenger hops with crisp Lincolnshire pale and chocolate malts, slowly matured to create a grainy quaffable beer.

I’m mildly suspicious of anything described as classic as the result is often anything but but this didn’t disappoint. A great tasting beer from this Lincolnshire based brewer that was certainly quaffable - had circumstances allowed! 3.7% A.B.V so not a headache merchant.

The Red Lion Mumby, Lincolnshire. March 2015

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Bacchus Hotel - Bacchus Bitter

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Brewed on site at the  Bacchus Hotel in Sutton-on-Sea in Lincolnshire which was the third stop on our Easter break after North Yorkshire - although we were at the caravan park at the other end of the village.

They’ve only been brewing on site since 2010, listening to regulars advice on taste.

Not the clearest pint I’ve ever had bit it was mighty tasty - the strong bitterness reining in the malty overtones. Would happily choose again.  4.3% A.B.V.

March 2015

Monday, 27 April 2015

Cropton - Two Pints Bitter

WP_20150327_007What they say: Classic bitter using Challenger & Goldings hops giving a strong hoppy flavour with a nutty aftertaste

With typical Yorkshire modesty it’s called two pints because it’s twice as good as the opposition! I wouldn’t go that far but it was an enjoyable enough ale from this young micro brewery formed in 2012. 4.0% A.B.V

Robin Hoods Bay, North Yorkshire. March 2015.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

HB Clark - Merrie City - Atlantic Hop

WP_20150325_004What they say: American hops are currently extremely sought after to satisfy the growing demands from UK brewers and drinkers.We have managed to secure stocks of the popular Amarillo hop from across the water and have mixed it with the ever-reliable British Bramling Cross hop to form this fantastic new session craft cask ale.The pale amber craft ale has a fresh, citrus aroma and a tropical, fruity taste, whilst the unique blend of hops leave a bitter-sweet aftertaste on the tongue.

Procured whilst staying on the North Yorkshire Coast was this offering from West Yorkshire brewery H.B. Clark. In good nick but regulars will know from the above description that it’s not my thing. A good summer beer though. 4.0% A.B.V.

The Black Bull, Ugthorpe, North Yorkshire. March 2015