Sunday, 19 May 2019

587: Windsor & Eton | Guardsman

The Brewery: “Windsor and Eton are already famous for many things. The castle, college, river, racecourse and of course the Royal connections. In 2010 the four of us wanted to add beer to the list. In fact we had a wild idea to make beer the top attraction. So we brought brewing back to the heart of Windsor…..We are proud to be part of the revolution in beer making throughout the world. As founder members of the London Brewers Alliance, we have helped grow the number of the Capital’s breweries from 11 in 2010 to over 90 today.”

The Beer: “The first beer brewed in Windsor for more than 80 years was launched on St George’s Day 2010 – it remains one of our best sellers to this day…….A lovely copper coloured session strength ale with a tangy taste, yet a really smooth fresh hop finish, ensuring that it is very ‘quaffable’.

My favourite style of ale and this did not disappoint, everything I like about a beer and in a lovely setting too - overlooking the times prior to the start of the Army v Navy rugby at Twickenham. I may have had more than one…4.2% A.B.V

The White Swan, Twickenham. May 2019

586: Twickenham | Naked Ladies

The Brewery: “Twickenham Fine Ales is London’s oldest micro-brewery……Founded by Steve Brown in 2004, Twickenham has been at the forefront of the resurgence of breweries in London. ….Twickenham Fine Ales was the first brewery in Twickenham since Cole’s Brewery closed in 1906…..In the beginning there was a 10 barrel plant which was installed in a small unit opposite a Greggs Bakery factory – pint and a pasty seeming natural bedfellows.”

The Beer: “Outstanding, glorious, hoppy golden ale using Herkules, Celeia and Chinook hops for full-flavoured satisfaction. Inspired by the statues of water nymphs in York House gardens in Twickenham, known locally as the “Naked Ladies” “

Appropriate to start with a beer from this brewery as the purpose of our visit was for the Army v Navy rugby match. Not my sort of beer as you have guessed from the description but enjoyable enough, particularly if you can arrange a nice warm summers day to go with it. 4.4% A.B.V.

The Royal Oak, Twickenham. May 2019.

585: Hepworth | Red Export

The Brewery: “Andy Hepworth started brewing in Reading almost directly after University. He moved to Horsham in 1980 and within five years became the youngest Head Brewer in the country, winning many awards. The long-standing tradition of brewing in Horsham came to an abrupt halt in 2000 with the sale of its last brewery and so Andy, determined to maintain that tradition, joined up with the key members of the brewing team in order to create Hepworths, an independent brewery aiming to build its own range of quality brands, while maintaining flexibility for contract work….. The Company was established in 2000 and started production in 2001.”

The Beer: “Slightly sweeter than most of our ales, Red Export has a delicate hop character reminiscent of Irish Red Ales”

I got quite into red ales when we went to Ireland in the caravan a few years ago and still enjoy one occasionally. This was a gift from a colleague who in turn had been given some for his birthday - however he is a coeliac and couldn’t partake. I certainly didn’t find it too sweet and nice that it was local too. 4.5% A.B.V. May 2019.

Saturday, 11 May 2019

584: Inveralmond | Ossian

The Brewery: “Opened on 14th May 1997, The Inveralmond Brewery is at the very heart of our beer. Situated in Perth, the brewery nestles between the fabulous rolling hills of Perthshire, the mighty Grampian mountain range and is surrounded by crystal clear rivers, providing inspiration and nourishment for the beers we produce and export around the globe.”

The Beer: “Our brewers selected flavour packed, slow kilned ale malt, caramalt and biscuity malted wheat to craft a malt backbone which is then beautifully complemented by a heady hop aroma of zesty lemon and orange citrus. This golden ale finishes refreshing and moreish.”

Lemon and orange? Yep, one I’d enjoy more on a hot summers night than by the fire in winter but it made a nice accompaniment to stint in my friends hot tub during a lovely stay at their house near Falkirk over Easter. 4.1% ABV. April 2019.

583: Broughton | Champion Double Ale

The Brewery: “Broughton Brewery was founded in 1979 by David Younger and James Collins in a former sheep station in the wee village of Broughton in the Scottish Borders. It was the first initiated Scottish microbrewery, which appealed to customers looking for a new “craft beer” experience outside the traditional mass-produced lager and exports. Scots, wanted something more, something dynamic, different, and with real flavour, hop character, and taste.”

The Beer: “A wonderful blend of the finest Scotch Ale and a dark roasted stout creates this Double Ale with double the flavour and double the character.”

Another from my Easter stay with friends near Falkirk and what a drop this was. Strong, dark and very yummy. Bottle conditioned though so careful pouring required. 5.6% A.B.V. April 2019.

582: Willam Bros. Brewing Co. | Seven Giraffes

The Brewery: “The Williams Bros. Brewing Co. started life in the humble ‘Glenbrew’ homebrew shop in Glasgow. This was the family owned business that was both our occupation and passion……..In 2004 we took over the ‘Forth Brewery’ at Kellibank, Alloa where Maclay’s had been contract brewing and packaging their beers since the sale of their old Alloa brewery. It was at this stage in proceedings that Heather Ale Ltd became Williams Bros. Brewing Co…….”

The Beer: “A blend of 7 grains, 3 hop strains and a late infusion of elderflower: This aromatic IPA was named by Scott's daughter. It pours a deep gold with aroma's of elderflower and citrus hops, followed by sweet caramel. On the tongue the biscuity malts are perfectly balanced with the bitterness of the hops, with a lingering floral elderflower aftertaste.

Procured from the local Aldi whilst staying with friends near Falkirk - they had a great selection but sadly my stay wasn’t long enough to try more than a few. A bit ‘flowery’ for me this one to be honest but a quality brew certainly. 5.1% A.B.V. April 2019

581: Tryst | Lade Out

The Brewery: “Situated in Larbert, Tryst Brewery has been producing quality ales since 2003. John McGarva, owner and head brewer, is always focusing on adding new twists to traditional recipes to create unique takes on classic ales. All of our brews are made with Scottish malt from Mungoswells in East Lothian with additions from Bairds Malt to add depth of colour and flavour. To keep our beers evolving we use hops from all over the globe allowing for a broad range of tastes and aromas.”

The Beer: “A robust & satisfying dark ale with a complex flavour of dark chocolate & liquorice that is rewarding on the palate.”

Much more ‘full-on’ than the Lade Back it was another very satisfying pint accompanying an excellent meal at the Lade Inn. Well worth a stop if you find yourself in this neck of the woods at the Scottish Real Ale shop next door is heaven on earth. 5.1% A.B.V

The Lade Inn, Kilmahog, Perthshire. April 2019