When the weather is as cold and miserable as it has been of late, I wonder why beers like York Brewery’s Stocking Filler are promoted as Christmas ales. I found this one knocked down to £1 a bottle at the York Brewery on a visit there last weekend and thought that it had to be worth trying, and I’m so glad that I did. The bottle describes its contents as a 4.8% ABV dark premium bitter, and elsewhere as a ruby ale: my experience is that the colour is just on the brown side of red, and the taste isn’t really what I think of as a bitter either! So my only criticism is of the description on the label! There’s a beautifully creamy head that lasts quite well, and the aroma is rich and spicy (as advertised) – mainly cinnamon. The taste is equally rich, with strong chocolate and malt flavour and spicy notes (exactly as it says on the bottle). The snow has been threatening to start falling all day but this ale will keep me warm, so all I need is the sound of sleigh bells and a hearty ‘ho, ho, ho’ to get me in the mood for Christmas!!!
Tag Archives: Red
Gunhill is another beer from Adnams’ Sole Bay Brewery in Suffolk. My first impression was that it was a brown ale, but I can see now that the beer has settled in the glass that it’s a deep ruby red. On pouring, it has a lively head that thins but remains across the beer, and there’s a strong aroma of honey. The beer has a flavour of butter, dried fruit and a slight hint of lemon, and an ABV of 4.0%. Adnams has a great sustainability record, and I’m glad that by drinking this beer, I’m indirectly (through Adnams) making a contribution to the Prostate Cancer Charity.
I do like Wychwood’s Hobgoblin. It’s a deep ruby red colour with a creamy head that quickly melts away until it is just thick enough to cover the surface of the beer . It smells of toffee and those tones are carried through to the flavour with added hints of chocolate and dried fruit. This 5.2% ABV ale would stand up well to roast beef or venison, or a hearty meat pie. Unfortunately it’s likely to be the last Wychwood ale that I review for a while as I need to restock! Definitely not for the faint-hearted!
Just for once a red beer that really is a red beer! Wold Top’s Headland Red is a deep ruby colour with a thin head. The nose is light and fragrant – slightly floral maybe – and the flavour is mild rather than bitter. This 4.3% ABV ale is not as malty as the bottle suggests, but hash a pleasant lasting hoppyness. The bottle also says that it’s the ale to use for the best beef in beer: I wouldn’t know about that, but it has a pleasant warming glow that has just reached my ears! Very nice indeed at the end of a cold winter’s day.