I come back now to a couple more beers from the Hook Norton brewery and I have to say I am quite happy with the quality of their beers.
I started off with a Hooky bitter and this was a nice golden bitter with plenty of sweet malt balanced by some nice bitter hops and something citrus. A very enjoyable beer.
Next up was a beer I enjoyed even more than the bitter, though I did not think I would at first. I did not expect to think much of this, for one thing I expected it to be a Golden ale from the name but its more a Pale ale it turns out.
The first thing I noticed on pouring it was that I might as well have poured a Cider like Bulmers/Magners or Strongbow. It had the same look, colour and carbonation as a sparkling cider.
I even fancied it smelled a little cider like but I think what I took for apple was more a mandarin or orangey type aroma. Not a great start as far as expectations go but then I tasted it and was pleasantly surprised to find it was a pale ale with plenty of hob and citrus bite. It was eminently refreshing and moreish.
This evening I had a dark lord. I had heard a lot about Dark Lord and wanted to try it. Unfortunately I did not read the label properly as it turns out that not all Dark Lords were created equal. The Dark Lord I thought/hoped for was this one from three floyds. What I actually got was this one from Batemans. This I believe is a Dark mild (open to correction) as opposed to an Imperial stout and there was no Queue to buy this one which should have been my first clue.
The mix up aside, this was an enjoyable beer. It poured a dark ruby with a frothy head which lasted long enough to blink and then was gone.
While I did enjoy this beer, I found it a tad on the thin side. A little like a watered down stout. There was burnt caramel, a little coffee and plenty of malt and it was very enjoyable. Also a note of sourness and some sort of citrus bite? To me was let down but the watery thinness but perhaps that is my fault for associating it too much with a stout or porter when in fact this is not really either of those.
Tomorrow I will be heading in to The Porterhouse to see what is on offer for the Belgian beer festival as well as meeting up with some ICB members at the Bull and Castle.