Friday, 3 July 2015

Kingstone - Abbey Ale

We had a most glorious holiday in the Wye Valley a couple of years ago and popped into the Kingstone Brewery shop and the setting was just lovely. It simply made us want to set up out own micro-brewery (still a dream but I have at least got a book on how to do it!).

For my Birthday, Anne had a collection of Kingstone beers delivered to help me celebrate and so Abbey Ale is the first of four that I have the joy to work though.

It is a complex beer, which is rich, fruity and generally quite busy. The bottle conditioning give is a fizz that is distinct. It is a full coloured amber ale which has as malty after taste.

All in all, a jolly enjoyable quaff. 

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Stod Fold - Amber

This really is a haphazard approach which is quite reprehensible but perhaps it means I am entering a phase of only writing about the good ones? And today is one of those. I am out with my wonderful Stripeycat, at the White Lion in Hebden and all the ales are eminently quaffable, a phrase that has as much reoccurrence as "so".... 

So, I opted for Stod Fold Amber as recommended by Stripecat who'd tried their Blonde at Calans Micropub (a must visit).

So onto the beer.

It's is a proper Yorkshire bitter, one that is both malty and creamy. Not dissimilar to my beloved Theakstons XP.

It has the makings of a good session beer. Good with pub lunches but equally an evening of fun could be had. 

A real keeper and glad I chose it... Even against the strong competition of Timmy Taylor's and Black Sheep.

Friday, 1 May 2015

Fraoch - Heather Ale

Described by the brewers as the original craft ale. Having been brewed for c. 4,000 years it has to be a contender for this title!

It is a departure from my usual style of brew as it truly is an ale, which means I should rename the blog Bitterstrom... But meh!

Key difference is that the hops are gone and Heather flowers are in. The result is a pale ale with light treacle smell, and distinctive floral malty taste which is frankly lovely on this spring evening.

It is almost honeyed....And really rather lovely.

So Slainte....

Friday, 20 February 2015

Ilkley Brewery - Joshua Jane

Well. I am stunned. This is my second sample of Ilkley Brewery, this time Joshua Jane (suitor to Mary Jane of Ilkley Moor ba t'at fame) and it was just perfect.

It is a medium brown beer with a really good bitter kick. It has a freshness of sorts which could easily lend itself to a session beer, but has clear links to the heritage of Yorkshire beer. It reminded me a little of my beloved Theakston's XP. But, according to the website, it is driven by Amarillo and Columbus hops which are American.

Friday, 30 January 2015

Brewdog - Punk IPA

I like the Brewdog ethos. They champion the world of craft beer and are clearly making a mark in this complex and competitive world. They have a range of bold beers which are interesting if only for the full on description.

Punk IPA is not shy its described as:

Welcome to a post Punk apocalyptic mother of an ale.

A beer that spent its formative years Blitzkrieg Bopping around India and the sub-continent.

This light, golden classic has been subverted with new world hops to create a devastating explosion of flavour. Steel yourself for Kalashnikov bursts of caramel, incendiary tropical fruit and an all-out riot of grapefruit, pineapple and lychee, before a spiky bitter finish.

This is quintessential Empire with an anarchic twist. Turn up the volume. Pay the man. Embrace the punked up, pimped up Maharajah of Pale Ales.

Nothing will ever be the same again.

Personal opinion. I know this is a popular brew but it isn't for me. It was strong in citrus, fruity flavour but lacked in bitterness. It is an American style IPA. Does that matter? Perhaps my ignorance gets in the way....

Friday, 23 January 2015

Wye Valley - Hereford Pale Ale

Continuing our exploration of Hereford ales, we sampled HPA.

It really was very pale, both in colour and taste. It was a light bitter taste which soon dissipated. The bottle recommends it accompany light dishes, which makes perfect sense.

I don't tend to like light dishes... So whilst not unpleasant, I would not be in a rush to buy again. I prefer something with more bite and chew.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Dorothy Goodbody's Golden Ale

It is my stripeycat's birthday. So we chose the Golden Valley for a winter break. Tonight we sampled the local Dorothy Goodbody's Golden Ale from Wye Valley brewery.

The beer has a clean citrus nose (smell?!) and there is a light fizz on the tongue with each mouthful. The taste is interesting as it is initially a strong and bitter beer but this quickly vanishes leaving a pleasant malty imprint. It is a distinct beer and entirely pleasant but reminds me of another... But sadly my memory fails... Hence the blog.