Monday, 20 June 2016

Piddle - Premium Ale

WP_20160602_14_39_37_ProWhat they say: “Full bodied and amber, sweet and malty with a fruity nose leading to a resinous hoppy flavour with a twist of citrus fruit, giving way to a dry bitter finish”

A nice pint this from nearby Dorest during our stay in Hampshire. I enjoyed it but wasn’t crystal clear, so look forward to trying a better example at some point. 4.1 % A.B.V.

The Three Cups Inn, Stockbridge, Hampshire. June 2016.

Skinners – Betty Stogs

WP_20160604_14_36_07_ProWhat they say: “Betty Stogs is an award-winning, copper-coloured bitter brewed since 1997 using Cornish water; whole-flower Celeia, Northdown and Aurora hops; Cornish malted barley and wheat; and Skinner’s unique yeast……………..Copper-coloured, with a light malty aroma, a floral, even cedar taste, and a sharp tang of bitter grapefruit, this is an ale that has the strength of character to take on tasty dishes like stews, hard cheeses and meat-packed pasties.”

The latest guest at our local was a very welcome return for old Betty. Most definitely had this before – both in our local and down in Cornwall, but it must have been before the Archive was born. A lovely pint – robust and malty. 4.0% A.B.V.

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. June 2016

Red Cat - Tomcat

WP_20160608_20_39_39_ProWhat they say: “Having a rich golden colour, Tomcat is packed with 6 different modern style hops providing a very full fruity hop character with just the right level of bitterness. It’s an American Pale Ale, a beer which has seen great popularity over recent years.”

Another ‘local’ find whilst staying near Winchester, this was a bit pale and hoppy for me but then A.P.A’s aren't really my thing. Had to try in the interests of ‘research’ though! 4.7% A.B.V. June 2016.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Hogs Back - Surrey Nirvana

WP_20160603_21_35_22_ProWhat they say: “The new Hogs Back Brewery staple ale. A well-balanced golden beer with a good bitter sweet balance and a strong citrus aroma”

Another ale from the talented chaps at Hogs Back. Again, as you might realise, not quite my thing, being a little to hoppy, but a pleasant enough drink. 4.0% A.B.V. June 2016

Navigation – Mayflower

WP_20160604_14_36_31_ProWhat they say: “A British “ Mild bitter beer” that’s dark in colour but light bodied. The flavour is dominated by roast malt with a subdued hop character. The Pilgrim Fathers drew their numbers from North Notts and the name of their ship from the delicate pink and white blooms of May.”

A seasonal from the Nottingham brewery is the latest guest at our local. I really like this. Tasty but easy drinking. Keep those hops subdued! 3.6% A.B.V

The Rottingdean Club, East Sussex. June 2016

Greene King - Back of the Net

WP_20160614_19_04_35_ProWhat they say: “Back Of The Net from Greene King is the perfect, easy drinking beer as the Amarillo and citra hops create a refreshing beer with an intense citrus zing”

This followed on from Purple Reign and whilst I didn’t enjoy it as much -  hardly surprising given the description – it went down well.  Again, the occasion and circumstances may have played a part! 4.1% A.B.V.

The White Horse, Rottingdean, East Sussex. June 2016

Greene King - Purple Reign

WP_20160614_19_04_30_ProWhat they say: “A majestic floral and fruity ale, brewed to mark the Queen's 90th Birthday”

Not a description that would normally excite me but it was very enjoyable – although maybe that fact that it was a warm evening after a challenging day helped – possibly anything would have gone down well! 4.2% A.B.V.

The White Horse, Rottingdean, East Sussex. June 2016.

Moorhouse’s - White Witch

WP_20160605_20_04_53_ProWhat they say: “A refreshing blonde ale with a fruity springtime flavour and a touch of citrus flowers and rich peppery spice on the aroma”

Another one from Aldi and yep, a bit too light,  fruity and flowery for me but a nice summer ale I guess. 3.9% A.B.V. June 2016.

Camerons - Strong Arm

WP_20160604_21_06_24_ProWhat they say: “The brewery’s flagship beer. Well rounded, ruby red ale with a distinctive, tight creamy head. A good balance of malt, hops and bitterness.”

It was a Cameron’s beer that got me in to drinking real ale – back in 2007 in Robin Hood’s Bay. It wasn’t this one sadly, but this rich dark red beer was very enjoyable nonetheless 4.0% A.B.V. June 2016.

Hop Back – Entire Stout

WP_20160529_16_29_30_ProWhat they say: “A rich dark stout with a strong roasted malt flavour and a long, smooth aftertaste. Suitable for vegans”

Not my first choice in ale but I do enjoy a nice stout sometimes. This was inoffensive and pleasant enough but not particularly memorable for me - I’ve enjoyed others more. 4.5% A.B.V

May 2016

Thursday, 16 June 2016

George Gale & Co. HSB (Bottle)

WP_20160601_20_53_52_ProWhat they say: “A silky-smooth premium ale, Horndean Special Bitter was originally the flagship beer of Gales Brewery in Hampshire. First launched in 1959, it’s still brewed with the same passion and pride today – and the age-old recipe continues to go down a storm.”

Just as enjoyable in the bottle as the draught version. Rich and full bodied. 4.8% A.B.V. June 2016.

Andwell – Resolute

WP_20160601_19_49_44_ProWhat they say: “Taking its name from a town within the high Arctic, despite its cool name this is the sort of bitter that we’re sure you’ll easily warm to. Andwell’s Best Bitter combines the finest malt and hops to produce a well balanced malty and hoppy flavour with a light amber colour.”

Yeah, nice this. A good best bitter, nicely balanced and from Hampshire too during our stay near Winchester 4.1% A.B.V. June 2016

Felinfoel – Double Dragon

WP_20160601_19_49_31_ProWhat they say: “Double Dragon has an ABV of 4.2%. It is a full drinking, premium Welsh Ale, which is malty and subtly hopped. Double Dragon has a rich colour and smooth balanced character. This deep copper red ale has a tangy red fruit flavour with nutty, toffee overtones.”

The first canned beer outside of the USA apparently and I got to sample the tinned version a couple of years ago when we were staying on a campsite in south Wales and a fellow caravanner who lives just up the road kindly deposited some at reception for us.  This bottled version also came courtesy of another caravanner who we met up on site recently thanks to a foray into Aldi who are now stocking it.

It reminded me of some of the lovely Irish reds we got to sample a couple of years ago - very drinkable and one I’d happily ‘sample’ again. May 2016

Arundel – Castle

WP_20160529_21_21_48_ProWhat they say: “A tawny coloured beer with a hoppy aroma. The flavour has a good balance of malt, fruit and hops with a dry hoppy finish.”

From just across the border in West Sussex during our stay in Hampshire. Another one to be enjoyed slightly more chilled on a nice warm day (or night).

June 2016

Hogs Back – Rip Snorter

WP_20160529_15_44_08_ProWhat they say: “A reddish amber bitter, malty but with refreshing hoppy high notes on the taste. RIP Snorter is brewed with the finest English pale malt combined with some crystal malt and a touch of chocolate malt. Then we add a combination of local Fuggles and Golding hops at three stages during the copper boil. “

Probably better known for the excellent T.E A - Traditional English Ale - was the equally enjoyable full on ale from the guys at Hop Back. Subtle it wasn’t but tasty it was! 5.0% A.B.V. May 2016

Itchen Valley – Pure Gold

WP_20160529_14_51_53_ProWhat they say: “It takes a lot to make our “Rob the brewer” smile (there are substantial liquid prizes on offer for anyone who can perform this feat). But a pint of Pure Gold usually does the trick. The first thing you may note in our premium ale is the strongly aromatic American specialty hops with hints of caramel. To drink, the beer is lightly effervescent with initial bitterness from the choicest Czech hops leading to a full, sweet malty flavour.”

It’s also nice to sample something local when away  - and this was one such beer procured during our stay just north of Winchester in Hampshire. As the name suggests, a golden ale and not usually my favourite style but it certainly tasted good. Best enjoyed slightly more chilled than usual and on a warm summers night I reckon. I realise one of those is a lot easier to arrange than the other! 4.8% A.B.V. May 2016

George Gale & Co. – HSB

WP_20160528_18_51_16_ProWhat they say: “A silky-smooth premium ale, Horndean Special Bitter was originally the flagship beer of Gales Brewery in Hampshire. First launched in 1959, it’s still brewed with the same passion and pride today – and the age-old recipe continues to go down a storm.”

From the Fullers stable - but that’s no bad thing in my opinion - a tasty ale of premium strength. Had only the same afternoon purchased the bottled version so was delighted to stumble upon this. Enjoyable but too strong for me to enjoy in a session. 4.8 % A.B.V.

The White Hart, Stockbridge, Hampshire. May 2016