Thursday, 14 October 2021

722: Chuckling Cheese Co. | Old codger

The last of three ales in a gift set received for my birthday and undoubtedly my favourite - I do love ruby ales as regulars will know. No idea who the brewery is but very enjoyable nonetheless. 4.8% A.B.V.

August 2021

721: Chuckling Cheese Co. | Golden Oldie

The second in a gift pack from some dear friends to celebrate a recent birthday. Unable to ascertain the actual brewery but very nice nonetheless. A classic golden ale. 5.0% A.B.V.

August 2021

720: Chuckling Cheese Co. | Get Funked

The first of a set of three beers gifted by some friend for a certain birthday milestone. They came from The Chuckling Cheese Company but I have been unable to ascertain who they were actually brewed by.

No matter though, it was a very tasty IPA that benefited from being served a little colder to keep those pesky hops in check. A nice drop. 4.8% A.B.V.

August 2021

719: Ennerdale | Darkest

The brewery: "Formed in 2010 as The Ennerdale Brewery in the small hamlet of Croasdale, Ennerdale, we have always been a family-run business with many relatives involved!....In November 2014, with the help of Barclays Bank, we moved into our new home in Rowrah. We’re still here to this day, close to the beautiful Lake District valley and lake that gives us our name and our inspiration."

The beer: "A dark bitter, it is a more potent brew than our other beers, but it remains remarkably quaffable. With a rich, velvety texture, a definite chocolate flavour and a creamy head, this beer has converted hundreds of ‘light beer’ drinkers to the dark side. "

Another from my time in the Lake District procured from the excellent Booth's and another really tasty dark ale - it didn't come across as heavy though and one I could have happily sunk several of. Top stuff. 4.2% A.B.V.

August 2021.

718: Lancaster | Lancaster Black

The brewery: "From humble beginnings in a tired old shed located on the outskirts of Lancaster, the brewery grew rapidly and reached production capacity in 2009. The new premises boasts a shop, bar, restaurant, function space and regular brewery tours..... Lancaster Brewery has four popular beers that form our core range - Lancaster Blonde, Amber, Red and Black and we also produce monthly specials and seasonal beers from our purpose built brewery located on the outskirts of Lancaster."


The beer: "Lancaster Black is a British stout for the connoisseur. Jet black in colour, it is a complex traditional dark brew with subtle hints of coffee and dark chocolate. An excellent fusion of malt, oats and wheat expertly balanced with Challenger, Perle and Cascade hops."

Another great find in Booth's during my stay in the North-West of England. A superb stout that really hit the spot. Delicious. 4.5% A.B.V.

August 2021.

Tuesday, 21 September 2021

717: Hawkshead | Porter

The brewery:  "Hawkshead Brewery began in 2002, in a barn just outside the village of Hawkshead in the Lake District...... In 2006 we relocated to the Mill Yard, beside the River Kent at Staveley, brewing on a new 20 barrel Brewhouse and built a brewery tap - The Beer Hall. In 2018 we commissioned a new state of the art Krones Brewkit and began work on our new Brewery in Flookburgh which was fully functional later that year in September."

The beer: "A modern dark beer, with aromas of dark chocolate, treacle sweet flavours, roasted bitterness with a surprisingly hoppy finish from American Cascade hops."

 Another tasty ale from the Hawkshead stable, I didn't find it too hoppy at all, a nice mix of flavours. Full bodied but not too heavy at 4.9% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries.

716: Lakeland Brewhouse | Bitter

The brewery: "The Lakeland Brewhouse (formerly Stringers Beer) is based in the South Lakeland market town of Ulverston. It all started with our Head Brewer Jon Kyme, a man with a passion, and since 2008 we have been creating a variety of real ales which have become popular with beer aficionados and occasional drinkers alike....Managing Director Kirsty Ridge acquired the brewery in 2018, and now the female owned brewery's ales can be found across the North.”

The beer: “Copper coloured with a sweet, soft aroma which leads into a full mouthfeel with a solid bitter finish”

As enjoyable as it's stablemate Stout - see recent entry - a lovely quaffable bitter. Related entries.

The Commodore Inn, Grange-over-Sands. August 2021.


715: Titanic | Anchor

The brewery:"Our Staffordshire brewery was founded in Burslem, Stoke on Trent in 1985 with one goal - to produce great beer!"

The beer: "The very first beer brewed at Titanic on October 1st 1985. Originally called Premium, this beer hasn’t changed and is still fabulous.
TASTING NOTE: Amber, floral, hoppy and very quaffable. This is a full bodied yet bitter ale."

I didn't find this too floral, just very tasty. A lovely traditional bitter. Being a Titanic owned pub a wide range of their beers were on offer.

The Cheshire Cheese, Buxton. August 2021. Related entries

Saturday, 18 September 2021

714: Appleby Brewery: Middle Aged Spread Stout.

The brewery: “Appleby Brewery was bought by Bowness Bay Brewery in 2019, and their beers are believed to be currently produced at the Bowness Bay Brewery in Kendal. For the record, Appleby Brewery was founded in 2014, and production began in March 2015.”

The beer: "Middle-Aged Spread is an ideal name for a beer which is a 'Stout'. It is dark, nutty, chocolatey and rich, perfect for winter firesides. So the next time someone says you are getting a middle aged spread, the only correct response is 'Good idea, I think I will'

Love the sentiment and loved the beer, despite it not being drunk by the fireside in winter. Very rich, full bodied and tasty. Procured at the Kirby Londsale branch of Booths who, in my experience, keep a wide range of real ale in their stores. 5.2% A.B.V.

713: Unsworth’s Yard | Last Wolf

The brewery: "Unsworth’s Yard Brewery was opened in January 2012 by brothers Peter and David Unsworth. The yard that gives the brewery its name was developed by the brothers from their family’s haulage and garage business which had previously operated on this site, opposite Cartmel Priory, continuously since 1922."

The beer: "Style: Red-brown ale Tasting: rich malty bitterness with red fruits and chocolate notes Provenance: English grown, floor malted, Maris Otter pale and roasted barley. Traditional English hop varieties. Behind the name: dedicated to the tenacity of the legendary Last Wolf in England, killed locally at Humphrey Head by a Knight, the estranged son of Sir Edgar, to win the hand of Edgar’s ward and niece, the beautiful Adela. Find out more about the legend at www.wolves.live/the-last-wolf-in-england."

Another tasty red from my time in Cumbria. Delicious. 4.3% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries


712: Unsworth’s Yard Brewery| Cartmel Peninsula

The brewery: "Unsworth’s Yard Brewery was opened in January 2012 by brothers Peter and David Unsworth. The yard that gives the brewery its name was developed by the brothers from their family’s haulage and garage business which had previously operated on this site, opposite Cartmel Priory, continuously since 1922."

The beer: "Style: Amber Best Bitter Tasting: mellow with a sweet, slightly caramel finish Provenance: English grown, floor malted, Maris Otter barley. Traditional variety Kent hops. Behind the name: recognises the historical location of the Cartmel Peninsula in Lancashire, North of the Sands, before its inclusion in Cumbria resulting from the Local Government Act of 1972.

Also called Peninsula Best, this was procured whilst visiting the delightful village of Cartmel, along with some sticky toffee pudding for which the village is more famous. Pleasant although it lacked a little body for me. It  would make a good session beer at 3.8% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries


711: Tirril | Windermere I.P.A

The brewery: "One of Cumbria’s longest established breweries. Family owned and proudly independent, brewers of traditional ales since 1999." History

The beer: "Our latest pale ale and arguably our best yet, light hoppy and very, very easy drinking."

Not my favourite style of beer but sadly the only one on offer at the time of visiting. A pity because there is plenty in the line up that takes my fancy. A nice enough ale but just not for me. 4.3% A.B.V.

The Wateredge Inn, Ambelside, Cumbria. August 2021

710: Hawkshead | Red

The brewery: "Hawkshead Brewery began in 2002, in a barn just outside the village of Hawkshead in the Lake District...... In 2006 we relocated to the Mill Yard, beside the River Kent at Staveley, brewing on a new 20 barrel Brewhouse and built a brewery tap - The Beer Hall. In 2018 we commissioned a new state of the art Krones Brewkit and began work on our new Brewery in Flookburgh which was fully functional later that year in September."

The beer: "A style that you don't see around too much these days, and what a shame it is! Hawkshead's bitter-sweet, malty red is just the ticket if you fancy something a little on different! Very much a traditional beer, there's plenty of earthy and grassy notes to be found intermingled with a strong maltiness and plenty of bitter rye licks."

I like a red ale every now and again as regulars will know and this enforced that. Very tasty. 4.2% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries.

709: Cwrw Llyn | Seithenyn

The brewery: "Our brewery is in Nefyn, a small fishing village on the Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales....We’re a small independent brewery producing delicious, characterful beers. From rich malty bitters to light golden ales, we take our time over our brews."

The beer: "A light and refreshing blonde/golden Ale full of flavour."

Not my favourite style as regulars will know but a good ale for the summer - which it was - apparently anyway.  Another kindly procured by a friend on a visit to the peninsula. 4.2% A.B.V.

August 2021.Related entries

708: Cwrw Llyn | Porth Neigel

The brewery: "Our brewery is in Nefyn, a small fishing village on the Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales....We’re a small independent brewery producing delicious, characterful beers. From rich malty bitters to light golden ales, we take our time over our brews."

The beer: "This Amber IPA is brewed using the finished North American hops to combine bitterness and fruitiness which gives a well balanced full flavoured IPA."


Not my favourite style of beer but pleasant enough and not overly hoppy, being served a little colder than usual seemed to work. 5% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries




Thursday, 16 September 2021

707: Lakeland Brewhouse | Stout

The brewery: "The Lakeland Brewhouse (formerly Stringers Beer) is based in the South Lakeland market town of Ulverston. It all started with our Head Brewer Jon Kyme, a man with a passion, and since 2008 we have been creating a variety of real ales which have become popular with beer aficionados and occasional drinkers alike....Managing Director Kirsty Ridge acquired the brewery in 2018, and now the female owned brewery's ales can be found across the North.”

The beer: "Roasty nose. Some grain and dark toast. Firmly bitter. A seriously drinkable jet-black stout."

Couldn't agree more, particularly with the last sentence. Very tasty indeed. 4.0% A.B.V.

The Commodore Inn, Grange-over-sands. August 2021. Related Entries

706: Cwrw Llyn | Cochyn

The brewery: "Our brewery is in Nefyn, a small fishing village on the Llŷn Peninsula, North Wales....We’re a small independent brewery producing delicious, characterful beers. From rich malty bitters to light golden ales, we take our time over our brews.”

The beer: "This is a ruby hoppy bitter, malty & fruity brewed using Brambing Crop hops."

Procured by a friend whilst staying on the peninsula, this was the first of two ales and was most enjoyable, but then it was true to a style of ale I like.Nothing much to add to the description, other than that I didn't find the hops too dominant. 4.5% A.B.V. August 2021.

705: Dancing Duck | Dark Drake

The brewery: "Dancing Duck brewery was founded by Rachel Matthews who came to appreciate real ale rather later in life than perhaps most brewers do. Having being rather underwhelmed by the odd half pint of Bank’s bitter and mild in her formulative drinking years Rachel spent most of her 20’s sticking to reassuring expensive lager, lots of wine and other strange alchopop style mixes that were around at the time."

The beer: "Delicious malty, caramel and liquorice flavours combine wonderfully in a smooth drinking velvety, oatmeal stout with a freshly roasted coffee and toffee finish."

A nice drop this, full bodied but at 4.8% A.B.V not too strong either.  August 2021

704: Timothy Taylor | Landlord Dark

The brewery: "Timothy Taylor’s is an independent, family-owned brewery founded in Keighley, Yorkshire in 1858 by Timothy Taylor. In addition to brewing a range of ales the Company also operates a modest pub estate of 19 outlets."

The beer: "Rich Yet Light Dark Ale. Landlord Dark originates from the multi award-winning Landlord Pale Ale but brewed with caramelised sugars to give a rich yet light and drinkable dark ale. This perfectly balanced mellow dark beer has body and depth. It has a fruity, toasted aroma with hints of chocolate, citrus and roasted malts on the tongue. A darker shade of pale!"

Although lighter than my favourite style of beer, Landlord has always been in my Top 5 so I was looking forward to trying this. To be honest it was a bit of an odd mix to my fussy unadventurous palate - I've always associated dark beers with a thick full bodiedness. Pleasant but didn't really hit the spot for me.

August 2021

703 : Peak Ales | Bakewell Best Bitter

The brewery: "In 2003 Robert and Debra Evans had a carefully prepared plan – sell the house, uproot their family, leave secure jobs and set up a microbrewery in the Peak District…..Chatsworth suggested he took a look at Cunnery Barn on the Chatsworth Estate, the barn buildings were in disrepair but the potential was obvious; the perfect location for a microbrewery had been discovered. Two years later and after many hurdles including planning, electricity, drainage, renovation, finance and resident barn owls, the first beer had been brewed and the owls had a purpose built nesting box – no other barn owls in Derbyshire have accommodation so grand!”

The beer: "Bakewell Best is a robust amber coloured ale. It is dry and firmly bitter, with some roasted malt flavours and plenty of grassy hops. The first brew by Peak Ales in 2005 named Bakewell Best is a classic bitter, one that is a favourite choice for those who love a traditional ale brewed in the Peak District."

A return visit to the Anglers Rest in Millers Dale brought with it the opportunity to try another from the Peak Ales range - and one that's much more to my taste. A superb pint, I really enjoyed this, but then it is my favourite style of beer.

August 2021

Tuesday, 14 September 2021

702: Batemans | Victory Ale

The brewery: “Our great-grandparents George and Susannah Bateman started the Brewery in 1874 to supply the local farmers, who paid their land workers part in produce, part in money and part in beer.......After four generations, we’re still independent to the bone. We fought hard for that independence and we feel it’s our duty to protect it, along with our fantastic brewery and all that it stands for.”

The beer: "Victory Ale is brewed with pale and crystal malts and hopped with English Goldings and American Liberty varieties. A distinctive peppery hop and bitter orange aroma is followed by big hops and fruit flavours with a lingering hop bitterness. Set sail and enjoy."

Not as hoppy and fruity as I feared. A tasty drop but punchy at 6.0% A.B.V.

August 2021. Related entries




Saturday, 14 August 2021

701: Buxton Brewery | Right To Roam

20210802_152905The brewery: “Buxton Brewery’s first ever brew was mashed-in on a cold, dark, January 1st, 2009. The brewhouse was the family garage and the batch size was about 40 litres……Fast-forward 9 years and the team, which has steadily grown to be 11 strong is now based in a 7000 square foot modern building on Staden Lane, Buxton. Its custom designed and (British) built brewhouse produces around 3500 litres per brew, 3 times per week.”

The beer: “Kinder Scout – the highest point of the Peak District, about 10 miles north of Buxton, was in 1932 the scene of a mass trespass by hundreds of walkers, some of whom were imprisoned for their actions. This led, arguably, to the formation of the National Parks and later, the Countryside Rights Of Way Act. Opening the land up to the people, with the Right To Roam, enabling forever, people to enjoy and cherish the wildest areas of Britain.”

No longer on the brewery web site, this appeared to be produced to celebrate the above. A fairly pale light bitter, it was ok but neither offended or excited my fussy palate. 3.8% A.B.V.

Buxton Brewery Tap House, August 2021

Friday, 13 August 2021

700: Peak Ales | Chatsworth Gold

20210801_142741The brewery: “In 2003 Robert and Debra Evans had a carefully prepared plan – sell the house, uproot their family, leave secure jobs and set up a microbrewery in the Peak District…..Chatsworth suggested he took a look at Cunnery Barn on the Chatsworth Estate, the barn buildings were in disrepair but the potential was obvious; the perfect location for a microbrewery had been discovered.
Two years later and after many hurdles including planning, electricity, drainage, renovation, finance and resident barn owls, the first beer had been brewed and the owls had a purpose built nesting box – no other barn owls in Derbyshire have accommodation so grand!”

The beer: “Chatsworth Gold is a golden beer made with honey from the Chatsworth Estate. The delicate sweetness is well balanced with bitterness from Goldings and Fuggles hops.”

Pleasant enough and crystal clear but not surprisingly, not to my taste - just not my favourite style of beer. Lovely location though. 4.6% A.B.V.

The Anglers Rest, Miller’s Dale, Derbyshire. August 2021.


699: Pennine Brewing Co. | Stables Bitter

20210731_160030The brewery: “Our story began in April 2013 with one simple mission to bring people together through our love of beer. Based in the beautiful North Yorkshire hills in Well, near Masham our 18 barrel microbrewery brews three times a week. We are a fiercely independent family brewery and pride ourselves on brewing the finest and characteristic beers.”

The beer: Appears to be brewed specifically for The Monsal Head Hotel and gets a rating of 3.22 on Untapped.

Nothing fancy about it but a very pleasant Bitter that wasn’t too strong in a lovely location. 3.9% A.B.V. July 2021

Friday, 30 July 2021

698: Sadler’s | Peaky Blinder Black IPA

20210730_153022The brewery: “The original Sadler’s Brewery was founded in 1861 and continued until 1927, but in 2004 descendants of the former owners began brewing again and it remains very much a thriving family run craft brewery that supplies its beers to bars, restaurants and shops throughout the region and beyond. “

The beer: “A Black IPA brewed with five different malts and five different hop varieties. Dark and delicious, refreshing and hoppy.”

This was more to my taste than the Pale Ale. Nice to sometimes drink a dark beer that isn’t heavy. It was very refreshing too.

4.4% A.B.V. July 2021. Related entries

697: Sadler’s | Peaky Blinder Pale Ale

20210724_124517_001The brewery: “The original Sadler’s Brewery was founded in 1861 and continued until 1927, but in 2004 descendants of the former owners began brewing again and it remains very much a thriving family run craft brewery that supplies its beers to bars, restaurants and shops throughout the region and beyond. “

The beer: “A light and refreshing pale ale brewed with English hops and barley. A gentle fruit bitterness leads to an uplifting citrus hop finish. “

Refreshing it certainly was, and it was certainly put to the test, being drunk on one of the hottest days of the year. More of a deckchair than a fireside beer to me. 4.3% A.B.V.

July 2021. Related entries

Saturday, 24 July 2021

696: Greene King | Abbot Reserve

20210723_121531The brewery: “We’ve been running pubs and brewing award-winning beer from our base in Bury St. Edmunds ever since the company was founded in 1799 by 19 year-old Benjamin Greene……Edward Greene grew the business in Bury St Edmunds significantly to the point where he merged operations with business rival Frederick King and Greene King began to become more recognisable as the brewery that we see today.”

The beer: “Very full bodied, rich and sweet with a higher bitterness to provide balance. Bursting with malty, biscuity and fruitcake character from the mixture of pale, amber and crystal malts. Masses of tropical fruits and floral fragrance from the hops in particular the fragrant, floral and spicy fuggles. Very complex,rich and warming.”

Another I’ve had before but omitted to add to the Archive. I’ve always liked Abbot Ale this was even better. However it is very much like Old Crafty Hen and given that they are both brewed at Bury St Edmunds it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s just a bit of re-badging going on. I tried them side by side and the both looked, smelt and tasted the same. Regardless, a nice drop. 6.5% A.B.V.

Related entries

695: Morland | Old Crafty Hen

20210723_151102_001The brewery: Is in fact Greene King and brewing takes place at it’s site in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. GK acquired the Morland Brewery - based in Abingdon - in 1999. There is now housing on the site where the brewery once stood.

The beer: “A strong fine ale combines the malty taste with a smooth raisin finish. It has great complexity, but it is still rather refreshing. This superior ale is great on nights with a bit of a nip in the air!….Our Master Brewer has created a premium, vintage oak-aged beer which delivers a variety of sophisticated tastes. The marvellous 5X brings resonance, depth and an eruption of fruity, raisin notes, underscored by the malt and toffee from Old Speckled Hen to create a perfectly smooth and rounded beer. Complex, mysterious… and a question and answer all in one.”

I’ve drunk this many times - not least because my nearby Co-Op stocks it - however it was only recently I realised that it wasn’t in the Archive. So here it is.

I must say I like this a lot, wonderfully rich and malty, a real winter warmer but not one to slosh back as a session beer unless you have some paracetamol to hand for the morning! 6.5% A.B.V I much prefer this to the other ‘Hens’.

Related entries.

Friday, 23 July 2021

694: Monty’s Brewery | Masquerade

20210623_194525The brewery: “Monty’s Brewery is based just a short distance from the ancient castle town of Montgomery, on the Powys - Shropshire border……….It was in January 2009 when the first casks were produced. It was only the third brew before Monty’s Sunshine started to get the recognition it still enjoys today, winning the “Darlington Spring Thing CAMRA Beer Festival”. It has since won numerous prizes, including Finalist Champion Beer of Britain.”

The beer: “A golden ale with tropical fruit flavours and a distinctive hop aroma…..We set out to create a great tasting gluten free beer that everyone can enjoy and in 2017 we improved the recipe not compromising on the aroma or taste. We think you'll love it even more!”

Liked this offering from Monty’s too. I didn’t find it too fruity and another good summer ale. Worth noting that it’s gluten free too. 4.6% A.B.V.

693: Great Central Railway | Porter

20210619_113413Brewed for the GCR by the Wicked Hathern brewery who are based near Loughborough, though brewing now seems to take place in Staffordshire.  Set up in the early 2000’s, there is currently no website and their last Facebook post was over a year ago, however they are clearly still brewing.

This was a classic porter to me - and very nice too. A great accompaniment to those lovely sounds and smells of a heritage steam railway.

June 2021

692: Weetwood Ales | Mad Hatter

20210619_174801The brewery: “Weetwood Ales began brewing in 1992 when finding a great pint of cask ale was a challenge. The brewery was founded by Adrian Slater, a skilled brewer, and Roger Langford, a farmer with space in a barn and a love for proper beer. Roger’s farm is in Weetwood Common, near Tarporley in Cheshire and the brewery took the name”

The beer: “In cask this is a great session beer, brewed with Amarillo hops from the USA to give spicy and floral character. In bottle we dial up the abv and the hops to create a punchy, robust Strong Ruby Ale.”

I was delighted to try another from the Weetwood stable after nearly two years and this did not disappoint either. I didn’t find it too floral, but glad I had the bottled version at 6% A.B.V. The cask version is brewed to 3.9% A.B.V.

June 2021.

691: Monty’s Brewery | Mischief

20210618_222709The brewery: “Monty’s Brewery is based just a short distance from the ancient castle town of Montgomery, on the Powys - Shropshire border……….It was in January 2009 when the first casks were produced. It was only the third brew before Monty’s Sunshine started to get the recognition it still enjoys today, winning the “Darlington Spring Thing CAMRA Beer Festival”. It has since won numerous prizes, including Finalist Champion Beer of Britain.”

The beer: “Our golden strong British IPA, refreshing and easily quaffable for a 5% ale.Brewed with a great balance of malts and hops this beer is an easy drinking brew with a slight sweetness in the finish.”

It certainly was very drinkable and most welcome after a long drive up from the south coast after work. The sweetness was very subtle. As often with these type of beers it would go down particularly well on a warm summers night, served a little colder.

June 2021

Tuesday, 27 April 2021

690: Glamorgan Brewing Co. | Welsh Cake Stout

20210405_203855The brewery: “The Anstee family began supplying the hospitality trade in South Wales with beers, wines and spirits in the early 90’s. The knowledge and community ties established during this time gave us a real desire to see quality Welsh beer back on local bars. So much so we thought we’d brew some ourselves.”

The beer: “Inspired by one of our favourite treats we decided to experiment by adding a mix of oats and raisins to a brew. The result is a rich, dark, and chewy stout with a slightly sweet vinous character", alongside the biscuity effect of oats and barley. Every sip reminds us of fresh Welsh Cakes, straight from the griddle.”

A delicious stout, full bodied and a very moreish combination of flavours. Top stuff.

689: Coach House | Cheshire Gold

20210401_214109The brewery: Coach House was established in 1991 following the closure of Greenalls Brewery earlier that year. We are the oldest cask ale producer in Cheshire celebrating our Silver anniversary in 2016.”

The beer: “A golden coloured beer with a fresh citrus hop aroma, creating a pine lemon crisp finish.”

It must have been the warmer weather but I found myself enjoying this one too - though thankfully the lemon finish went largely unobserved by my palate. Related entries

688: Coach House | Post Horn

20210401_205202The brewery: “Coach House was established in 1991 following the closure of Greenalls Brewery earlier that year. We are the oldest cask ale producer in Cheshire celebrating our Silver anniversary in 2016.”

The beer: “A rich, straw coloured quality premium ale with a robust malty palate and a well balanced steely bitterness.”

Tried not to let the paleness colour my opinion of this which was just as well as it was a superb tasting beer. Superb combination of maltiness and bitterness.

April 2021. Related entries

687: Tatton Brewery | Best

20210331_192559The brewery: “Tatton Brewery is a family-run brewery in Knutsford in the heart of Cheshire, just a stone’s throw from Tatton Park……We have a custom built modern brewery, and have combined this with a traditional local yeast (revived after 50 years retirement), the finest ingredients and years of experience creating internationally renowned beers, to brew what we believe to be Cheshire’s finest beers.”

The beer: “A classic light amber coloured best bitter with a clean malt flavour and fine hop character derived from a blend of aroma hops.”

Like this even more than the Gold - see previous entry - but then Best Bitters generally seem to satisfy my palate. Another great beer from Tatton. Related entries

686: Tatton Brewery | Gold

20210331_172235The brewery: “Tatton Brewery is a family-run brewery in Knutsford in the heart of Cheshire, just a stone’s throw from Tatton Park……We have a custom built modern brewery, and have combined this with a traditional local yeast (revived after 50 years retirement), the finest ingredients and years of experience creating internationally renowned beers, to brew what we believe to be Cheshire’s finest beers.”

The beer: “A full-tasting, satisfying deep golden special ale. This is a beer with a generous maltiness backed up by a robust hop character.”

The first of a few from my time in Cheshire with my ‘bubble’ over Easter. Liked this a lot, the maltiness kept them pesky hops in check and the result was a delicious ale indeed.

April 2021. Related entries

685: Lacons | Affinity

20201227_162006The brewery: “In the 1960s, we were taken over by a London brewer who closed Lacons down.  We subsequently reclaimed our independence in 2013 and started brewing again…….Based in Great Yarmouth, Lacons Brewery is home to Lacons Encore, the award-winning amber beer……Although the Lacons name goes back to the mid-18th century, our modern day brewery applies the latest technology to the age-old craft of brewing beer. We’ve taken the best of the old Lacons recipes (plus the original Lacons yeast) and tweaked them to create modern beers with years of heritage.”

The beer: “Big, bold, Beautiful…An intensely satisfying ale that makes any occasion special….Affinity is our boldest ale – with a passion for fruit and nut.”

Sampled on a cold Decembers’ day this didn’t really work for me but I could imagine it on a warm summers’ afternoon, maybe chilled a little more than is usual for ale. 4.8% A.B.V.

December 2020. Related entries

684: Rebellion | Red


20201216_194420
The brewery: “The story of the Rebellion Brewery starts with two friends, Tim Coombes and Mark Gloyens. Attending school together in Marlow at a time when the old Wethered Brewery was in full production, the sweet aromas of malt were a constant reminder that Marlow was an active brewing town……….the Rebellion Brewery was eventually established on the Rose Industrial Estate in Marlow Bottom in April 1993. In 1999 the brewery moved to its current location on Bencombe Farm, occupying the old grainstore and other redundant farm buildings.”
  
  • The beer: "A warming, Autumnal red ale, rich & malty, with a balancing bittersweet hop character."

Another good'un from Rebellion and my second favourite of the the three recent ones I've tried - Roasted Nuts Extra being top. Another quality ale that my awkward palate found very moreish. 4.5% A.B.V."

December 2020. Related entries.




683: Rebellion | Winter Royal

20201216_173720The brewery: “The story of the Rebellion Brewery starts with two friends, Tim Coombes and Mark Gloyens. Attending school together in Marlow at a time when the old Wethered Brewery was in full production, the sweet aromas of malt were a constant reminder that Marlow was an active brewing town……….the Rebellion Brewery was eventually established on the Rose Industrial Estate in Marlow Bottom in April 1993. In 1999 the brewery moved to its current location on Bencombe Farm, occupying the old grainstore and other redundant farm buildings.”

The Beer: "Ruby and warming Originally brewed by the Wethered Brewery in Marlow, Winter Royal became one of their flagship beers until the brewery closed in 1988. We are proud to be reviving this popular beer using the original Wethered recipe. Traditional Fuggles and a Goldings hop variety add to the authenticity of this classic English beer. The result is a deep, ruby winter warmer at 5.4%, with a rich maltiness, soft bitterness and a fantastic late and dry hop aroma"

My second beer procured from this Marlow based brewery during my stay in nearby Henley-on-Thames in December and once again it did not disappoint. A perfect winter warmer and not as sweet as some of these winter ales can be.
December 2020. Related entries.


Tuesday, 16 February 2021

682: Rebellion | Roasted Nuts Extra.

20201216_170100The Brewery: “The story of the Rebellion Brewery starts with two friends, Tim Coombes and Mark Gloyens. Attending school together in Marlow at a time when the old Wethered Brewery was in full production, the sweet aromas of malt were a constant reminder that Marlow was an active brewing town……….the Rebellion Brewery was eventually established on the Rose Industrial Estate in Marlow Bottom in April 1993. In 1999 the brewery moved to its current location on Bencombe Farm, occupying the old grainstore and other redundant farm buildings.”

The Beer: “Based on our ever-popular winter cask beer, Roasted Nuts Extra is brewed to a higher strength to make this bottled Version a true 'Winter Warmer'.The rich malt character is complimented by the fruit flavours from the Cascade & Bramling Cross Hops.Think of this beer as a Claret, best served at cellar temperature. Whilst it can be enjoyed at any time, its deep, complex nature marries beautifully with hearty winter stews and red meats.”

A stay in Henley-on-Thames before Christmas meant a visit to the brewery shop at nearby Marlow was a must, where I bought a multi-pack of ‘Winter Warmers’.

I thought I would like this - given how much I enjoyed the standard Roasted Nuts - and I was right. Superb, delightfully rich and malty. 5.8% A.B.V.

December 2020. Related entries.

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

681: Burton Bridge Brewery | Festive Christmas Porter

20201213_181147The Brewery: There’s a great piece on their website about how the brewery came to be, tied in with some history of brewing in Burton. Check it out HERE

The Beer: “A fruity, very dark brown beer with a bitter after-palate…..Only available in late November and December in time for Santa to deliver on Christmas Day. This beer is a variation on our traditional bottled porter.”

Enjoyed this immensely. Black as yer ‘at - always a tick for the Blogger in Black - and very flavoursome. Notably less gassy than many bottled ales - another plus point in my book. Hoping I come across some of their regular ales at some point.

4.5% A.B.V. December 2020

680: Purple Moose Brewery | Dark Side Of The Moose

20201212_154635The Brewery: “Y Bragdy Mws Piws / The Purple Moose Brewery is a '40-Barrel' micro-brewery based in the historic harbour town of Porthmadog, North Wales, close to the mountains of Snowdonia. Brewing commenced on 14th June 2005 with a one-off special pale ale at 3.5% called "No.1".

The Beer: “Ochr Dywyll y Mws/Dark Side of the Moose is a delicious dark ale brewed from Welsh mountain water and natural ingredients. Using a delicate blend of dark crystal malt, roasted barley and Bramling Cross hops the 'Dark Side' exhibits a rich malty flavour balanced with fruity bitterness. “

Another good un, just enough fruitiness without being too sickly. 4.6% A.B.V. December 2020

679: Great Orme Brewery | Welsh Black

20201212_154620The brewery: Well a website is currently under development but they are not located in Llandudno as the name might suggest but now in the Conwy valley.

The Beer: “Rich, dark and full of malt flavours, this black bitter owes its characteristics to the large amount of chocolate malt giving it a velvety smooth rich coffee finish. No aroma hops are added to this beer, instead seven types of grain are used to develop the flavour.”

Liked this, it was very rich and velvety indeed. Taste belied the strength. Another from the great little deli in Llangollen.

3.7%. A.B.V. December 2020

Tuesday, 5 January 2021

678: Bluestone | Moonstone

20201212_154504The Brewery: “Bluestone Brewing is an exciting, eco-friendly family run brewery situated in the foothills of the Preseli Hills in North Pembrokeshire…..The name comes from the local stone that the buildings were built from many years ago. Bluestone is also pretty famous for being mysteriously transported over 250 miles to become Stonehenge over 5000 years ago! The water we use for brewing our Rock Solid Ales is unique to Bluestone. Our water filters down the Preseli Mountains and collects in a well on our land. And because the spring water is so natural and crystal clear, it goes straight from the well into our beers, with no filtering or added chemicals.”

The Beer: “A full bodied traditional dark Porter hopped with Bramling Cross and Fuggles hops creating a spicy bitterness to compliment it’s chocolate and nut flavours. A recipe true to Britain’s most popular beer of the 1800s”

The first of a few beers from Wales, procured in a great little deli in Llangollen during a day trip whilst staying in Chester.

Yes a traditional Porter but I found it slightly more flavoursome than the previous entry although the lower A.B.V was evident.

4.6% A.B.V. December 2020

677: St Peter’s | Old-Style Porter

20201211_211054

The Brewery: “St. Peter’s Brewery is one of England’s original craft breweries, founded in 1996 in former traditional agricultural buildings alongside the moated St. Peter’s Hall, deep in the picturesque Suffolk countryside. The location, in the village of St. Peter South Elmham, near Bungay, is ideal for the excellent water quality used in the brewing process – all beers brewed at St. Peter’s Brewery use water filtered through chalk deep beneath the brewery, obtained from our own deep bore-hole.”

The Beer: “A blend of mature and young ale creates a porter of traditional character  that is dark cherry in colour and complex in taste. Aromas of rum, liquorice, raisin and chocolate with hints of coffee are in abundance in this full-bodied warming ale.”

Maybe I’ve got used to the more modern porters of late where the rich coffee and chocolate flavours are more prominent but this didn’t quite hit the spot for me. It didn’t feel that full bodied to be honest - there was nothing wrong with it - I just found it a bit plain. Hoping I come across some of the other beers in their range though.

5.1% A.B.V. December 2020