Yorkshire Terrier is the latest in my series of reviews of York Brewery’s excellent ales. It’s 4.2% light coppery gold ale with a light head. The aroma is fragrant and floral, and the flavour itself is dry, hoppy and full of orange zest. It wouldn’t be my choice as a session ale – it’s maybe a little too bitter/dry for my taste – but it’s a very clean, fresh taste, and if you prefer a hoppy ale, this one might suit you very well indeed.
Category Archives: Golden Ale
York Brewery’s 4.2% ABV York Minster Ale is a light golden bitter. It smells of very little at all, to be honest, but the flavour is a good, strong dry bitterness, with plenty of zesty hops. It’s a much more robust sustained flavour than the Guzzler, and as bitters go, I really like it, but personally prefer Guzzler. I wouldn’t drink this with a meal, but wouldn’t turn down a pint at my local pub.
To get me started on my series of reviews of beers from Yorkshire based breweries, I’m starting at the York Brewery itself, with the excellent 4% ABV Guzzler. This is a light gold ale that pours with a light but enduring head. The ale smells of citrus and elderflower, and the taste is light on malt, with subtle notes of citrus lemon. Unusually, the tasting notes match my own assessment of the beer. It would be great with a salad, or a very enjoyable session ale. Highly recommended.
Thwaites Frothy Moth is a light amber ale with a thin white head that is surprisingly long lasting. It’s something of a mystery as it doesn’t seem to be listed on the Thwaites website, so I’ve no idea what Thwaites thinks of it! The aroma is floral, hoppy and a little spicy, and the taste is mild, slightly fruity and with only the merest after taste of bitter. At 4% ABV, it would be a fine session ale, though I drank it as an accompanimemt to home-cooked trout with toasted almonds and lemon.
As we’re officially into Spring, and this bottle has been sitting on the shelf for some weeks, now’s a good time to try Shepherd Neame’s Early Bird Spring hop ale. And what a difference a day makes! Superficially this beer looks very similar to the Ferryman’s Gold that I tried yesterday, but beyond the 4.5% ABV, there’s no similarity whatsoever. Early Bird claims to take its name form the nature of the hops that it uses, and the result is very good indeed. The ale is a bright golden colour (compare with the dull appearance of the Ferryman’s Gold) , and there’s a lovely creamy head that lasts really well. The smell is fragrant, slightly floral, with plenty of grapefruit. There’s a dry, fruity, flavour, reminding me almost of almost burnt oranges, balancing the hops and malt well. This is a very enjoyable beer and was well worth the wait.
This bottle of Loddon Ferryman’s Gold came from my local garden centre, and as it had been reduced to clear I thought it worth trying. Loddon is based in Oxfordshire and Ferryman’s Gold is very much what I would consider to be a ‘southern’ beer. There’s a kind of sigh as the bottle is opened and the liquid that emerges is a light gold colour though slightly cloudy, with a head that is thin and dissipates quickly. The smell reminds me of apricots and the flavour starts quite buttery, but this is overtaken by fresh citrus notes. It’s not unpleasant, but not particularly rewarding either, so I’m not sure that I’ll be looking for this 4.8% ABV ale again.
Nethergate’s Umbel Ale is the first beer that I’ve reviewed from the Brewery of the Year 2012. It is a light golden ale with a good head weighing in at just 3.8% ABV. It has a floral, hoppy smell, though I wasn’t able to detect the ‘festival’ of aroma that the Nethergate website warns me comes from the added toasted coriander seeds. The flavour too is much more subtle than the spicy overtones which I’m led to expect, but that’s not a bad thing at all. The coriander comes through in the aftertaste, following the quite hoppy first impressions, and then it lingers, for quite some time after the glass is empty. Very pleasant!