Saturday, 29 June 2013

Strawberries, Cream and English Ale (and Glasto too)

The Weekend's here!
With a weekend of sport (well done Laura Robson – Unlucky Lions) and good music ahead, I decided to head up to Sainsbury's to stock up on a range of English Ale to see me through.

There's a quite a lot of English Ales in "1001 Beers to Try Before You Die" that I'm yet to sample, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to tick a few off the list. As always this was easier said than done.

I REALLY need to start taking the book with me on buying trips. I managed to buy a couple of beers I have already ticked off the list (d'oh – but at least they are good beers!), and a few more I thought where on the list but aren't. This happens me all the time... I reckon if I ever make it through all 1001 beers I'll have sampled at least twice that (actually now I've thought that through maybe its a good thing after all...)

Anyway, here's what I sampled:

From 1001 beers
  • Fuller's ESB. Style: Bitter, ABV: 5.9%.

    Description: Poured with a big, amber head that dissipated quickly. Clear, mid-amber in colour with a decent amount of bubbles that stayed well throughout. A malty bitter, only mildly hopped. The maltyness means that it feels bigger than expected given the colour and clarity.
    Conclusion: I’m not the biggest fan of bitters generally, but I can see that this one is a good example of the style. I definitely buy it again, but I'd guess there would mostly be better, more exciting or new beers to try instead!
    Score: 6.5

  • Theakstons Old Peculiar. Style: Porter, ABV: 5.6%

    Description: Nice head, that lingered for awhile. Toasted malts to taste. Quite thin mouth-feel considering its a porter.
    Conclusion: After IPAs, Porters are probably my favourite style of beers. This one's grand, but a wee bit too thin and light for my taste.
    Score: 6

  • Abbot Ale. Style: Bitter, ABV: 5%
    Description: Quite a light bitter with a carmel taste. Poured with a nice head that hung around till there was no beer left!
    Conclusion: I thought that I wouldn't like this (clear bottles tend to be a bad sign), but actually it was fine. Though I doubt I’ll ever buy it again.
    Score: 5.5

  • Old Empire. Style: IPA, ABV: 5.7%
    Description: Another clear bottle... Poured clear and light amber. Lightly hopped and not much IPA bitterness
    Conclusion: I like my IPAs big and bold (see Hoppelhammer in my last post). Not bad but again there better out there so not one I’d go back to.
    Score: 6

Not on the list
  • Southwold Bitter. Style: Bitter, ABV: 4.1%
    Conclusion: It might have been the few that preceded it but this came across quite well. Really solid bitter.
    Score: 6

  • Old Thumper. Style: Bitter, ABV: 5.6%
    Conclusion: Strange after-taste to start, almost tempted not to finish it. It improved as it was drunk. Perhaps I served it too cold.
    Score: 5

  • Green's Golden Ale. Style: Golden Ale, ABV: 4.1%
    Conclusion: Apparently brewed in Belgium for Greens in England. Wheat and gluten free. Smells like Duvel, but tastes nothing like it. To thin too light, and is actually more amber than blond. Refreshing but no backbone.
    Score: 5
Right I’m off to enjoy the Stones at Glasto.


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