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Good to Very Good

Wychwood – Wytchcraft Ale

Hello again,

Third in my series of Wychwood beers, today I bring you it’s namesake ale. http://www.wychwood.co.uk/

Beer: Wychcraft

Brewery: Wychwood (Marstons), England

Wychwood's Wychcraft - mild blonde slightly acidic refreshing lager 7 o5 () 10

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Impressions:
 This is a smooth, light ale (bordering on lager like freshness). Light in colour but not lacking in bitter hops. Refreshing cereal notes with a lingering bitterness mixed with a nice citrus backing. Light in body. Medium to low carbonation.

ABV: 4.5%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: This is a nice light ale that has a good amount of bitterness. The lower ABV of this beer counts slightly against it as it has a very light body that could use a kick (but could also count toward it on a hot summer day). Well worth a try.

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FIX Hellas

Hello fellow travellers,

Today I bring you another in my Greek series of beers. Another lager that helped me cope with the gorgeous sunshine and warm summer breeze blowing across the picturesque island of Santorini. Again, purchased from a little market north of the beaches at a very reasonable price, probably around $1 euro.

Beer: FIX Hellas

Brewery: FIX, Athens, Greece

Fix Hellas - Athens, Greece - very smooth lager low bitterness very refreshing not much body but perfect for a hot day semi sweet notes of honey medium low carbonation -  5 abv - 7o25 () 10
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Impressions: A very smooth lager with low bitterness. Not much body, but very refreshing. Semi sweet notes of honey and vanilla in the background. Medium to low carbonation.

ABV: 5%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: This was a very enjoyable beer. At first it seemed like a fairly average lager, but then semi sweets notes started to break out in the background bringing a nice balance of bitter and sweet. Nothing remarkable mind you, but perfect for a hot Greek summer holiday.

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Check out my original Santorini post here:

https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/03/12/greece-beers-in-santorini/

and the follow up:

https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/05/05/athenian-brewery-alfa-beer/

Badger – Fursty Ferret – Hall and Woodhouse VIII

Hello beer people!

 

Moving right along in the Badger series, today I bring you:

Beer: Fursty Ferret

Brewery: Badger, Hall and Woodhouse, Dorset, England

Badger - Fursty Ferret - smooth and creamy bitter low hops bitterness light caramel and malt sweet mild flavour hint of bitter after taste - 7o25 () 10
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Impressions: A smooth and creamy tasting ale.  A very light hops bitterness is complemented by light caramel and sweet malt notes. Very mild and light body, with a light bitter after taste. Low carbonation.

ABV: 4.4%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: This was a nice beer that brought some nice flavours together. Nice. Slightly sweet and very easy drinking, this is definitely a lighter ale. A higher ABV would have been welcome, however, as is, an enjoyable ale that I’ll probably pick up again when I’m in the mood for something lighter.

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Badger – Hopping Hare – Hall and Woodhouse IV

Hey all,

Continuing on with my series from Hall and Woodhouse http://www.hall-woodhouse.co.uk/the-range, today I bring you:

Beer: Hopping Hare

Brewery: Badger, Hall and Woodhouse, Dorset, England

Badger Hopping Hare - Dorset, England - very smooth ale creamy sweet hoppiness with notes of vanilla and citrus medium bitter medium low carbonation - 4o4 abv - 7o25 () 10
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Impressions: This was a very smooth ale, with a creamy bitter-sweet hops. Strong notes of hops citrus followed by subtle notes of vanilla. Medium to low carbonation.

ABV4.4%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: Quite a nice, hoppy ale. This one was stuck in the middle ground of too drinkable or too potent. Ie. It’s very drinkable but lacking a bit of punch (perhaps a higher ABV would have made up for the tail end of the hops flavours). Overall a good beer though, and I would recommend it to those that enjoy lighter, hoppier ales. Enjoy!

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Read my other reviews of Badger Beers here:

https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/hall-and-woodhouse-brewery-badger-ales-part-i/

https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/04/25/badger-golden-glory-hall-and-woodhouse-ii/

https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/04/26/badger-tanglefoot-hall-and-woodhouse-iii/

Badger – Tanglefoot – Hall and Woodhouse III

Hey all,

Today I bring you another beer from the delectable Badger brewery.   https://pilsnerpilgrim.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/hall-and-woodhouse-brewery-badger-ales-part-i/

Beer: Tanglefoot

Brewery: Badger (Hall and Woodhouse), Dorset, England

Badger's Tanglefoot - Dorset, England - very smooth straw coloured ale sweet malt and caramel flavours notes of pear medium to mild bitterness creamy finish medium to low carbonation 5 abv 7o25 () 10
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Impressions: This was a very smooth, straw coloured ale. Sweet malt and caramel flavours at the forefront, with notes of soft pear hiding at the back. A medium to mild hops bitterness throughout, leads to a creamy finish and after taste. Medium to low carbonation.

ABV: 5%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: Tanglefoot was a nice light ale. The blend of sweet and bitter was definitely appetising, but the overall body left a bit desired. Perhaps a touch more hops would have really set this one apart. But as it stands, still a really enjoyable, easy drinking ale. Maybe not one for those that stay away from the sweet stuff.

 

 

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Stella Artois Compendium

Today I bring you 2 beers and 2 ciders from the Stella Artois family. Started from a brewery dating back to 1366, “Stella Artois was launched initially as a seasonal beer for the Christmas holiday market. First sold in Canada, it was such a commercial success that it became available all year round, and, apart from the duration of the Second World War, has been produced ever since.”

http://www.stellaartois.com/

 

Beer #1: Stella Artois

Brewery: Stella Artois, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Belgium

Stella Artois - apparently called wife beater in England - highly carbonated light flavour mildly bitter - not as good as the Canadian version - 6o75 [] 10

Impressions: This is a very smooth lager, with medium bitter hops notes, and little else. Medium to high carbonation (in this bottle) makes this lager very lively, but is also quite refreshing.

ABV: 4.8%

Score: 6.5 / 10 (Average)

Verdict: A fairly standard lager. Refreshing with a decent amount of bitterness, but no real outstanding qualities. In England this is apparently called ‘Wife Beater’.. not really sure why. In Canada it is sold at 5.2%, so it has more kick and is overall a better beer.

 

Beer #2: Stella Artois Black

Brewery: Stella Artois, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Belgium

Stella Artois Black - Belgium - cold smooth ale very refreshing light hops flavour less bitter than normal but cleaner finish medium carbonation - 7o25 () 10

Impressions: This was an even smoother version of Stella. Very refreshing with a light bitter hops. Less in the way of bitterness than the original (above), but with a much cleaner body and finish. Medium carbonation.

ABV: 4.9%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: This has a slightly higher ABV than above, but oppositely, is a much cleaner beer. Very smooth. Not much in the way of stand out flavours, but very refreshing. Pleasingly served very cold. Worth a try.

 

Cider #1: Cidre

Brewery: Stella Artois, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Belgium

Stella Artois Cidre - Belgium - very smooth mild cider 4o5 abv mild semi sweet apples create a warm mouth feel medium carbonation - 7o5 () 10

Impressions: A very smooth, full bodied cider. Mild in strength, but a strong apple flavour throughout. Clean, semi sweet apples, with a warm mouth feel. Medium carbonation.

ABV: 4.5%

Score: 7.5 / 10 (Very Good)

Verdict: This was an enjoyable cider. Much better than I had anticipated from a large beer brewery! Slightly low on the ABV leaves a bit of punch to be desired, but it’s very smooth and easy drinking. Definitely worth a try.

 

Cider #2: Cidre Pear

Brewery: Stella Artois, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Belgium

Stella Pear Cidre - Belgium - very smooth pear cider not too sweet notes of vanilla nice sharpness medium low carbonation - 4o5 abv - 7o5 () 10

Impressions: As above, a very smooth cider. Strong pear notes, but not too sweet. Notes of vanilla blend in the background. Medium to low carbonation mix with a slight sharpness, creating a tangy lively cider.

ABV: 4.5%

Score: 7.5 / 10 (Very Good)

Verdict: Again, a surprise from the Belgians. I’m not usually a fan of ‘Perrys’ as they are often sickly sweet. This was a nice blend of warm, but also sharp, pear notes with an acceptable amount of sweetness. Again (as above), a higher ABV would have given the whole package a better kick, but as is, this is an easy drinking cider and would be perfect on a hot summer day.

 

LIVE UPDATE – El Pinsapo Gran Seleccion Rioja 2010

RIGHT NOW I am enjoying a bottle of El Pinsapo Gran Seleccion Rioja from 2010, served at a perfect 17*C. Currently available at Tesco for £4.99 (Half Price, they say).

Wine: El Pinsapo Gran Seleccion, Rioja, 2010

Vineyard: Garcia Carrion, Spain

IMG_20130322_204721

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Impressions:  This is a velvety smooth wine, with and equally soft flavour. Very dry but with little tannin puckering mouthfeel. Very light notes of grape are followed by a light alcohol after taste. Update: After having the bottle open for 1 hour+, the smoothness of the wine has decreased. A much more potent alcohol feel is prevalent, with a sharper, drier, more pungent taste. Not as nice.

ABV: 13.5%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good  to Very Good8 / 10 (Excellent)

Verdict: Addendum: As per the tasting notes above, this wine has seemingly lost some of it’s smooth qualities after being opened for around 2 hours (uncorked/lidded) and thus, the score has suffered. Still an enjoyable wine however. This wine is definitely an easy drinking wine. It’s so soft that it could definitely be marked down on its subtle fruit notes, but the value for money here at this (half) price point more than make up for that. For someone who isn’t a connoisseur, I’m sure this will be highly enjoyable.

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GREECE: Beers in Santorini

Hello all,

Continuing with my ‘beers from around the world’ theme at the moment, today I bring you an authentic Greek beer I enjoyed while on holiday in Santorini. Santorini (or Thira) is a member of the Grecian Cyclades, which are a cluster of islands south-east of Greece’s coast. Stunning views were not hard to find when the cities are built high upon the the tops of ancient volcano remnants. (Please note that scores of the following beers may have been rated higher than if they were enjoyed in non 40*C heat). The price of beer in Santorini is fair (even cheap compared to some places in Europe), approximately $3 euros for a large pint, often served in an ice-chilled pint glass, which makes the lagers that much more refreshing. The bottle presented below was probably around the $1 euro mark.

There isn’t much info on the net about this beer so any help filling in the details is appreciated!

DSC03149

Beer: Fischer

Brewery: possibly  S.A. Fischer, Athens, Greece

Fischer - Greece - smooth pilsner semi sweet notes of caramel and vanilla low bitterness with a slight bitter aftertaste medium low carbonation refreshing but full flavour - 5 abv - 7o25 () 10
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Impressions: This is a smooth pilsner with an atypical low bitterness. Semisweet notes of caramel and vanilla pervade the beer followed by a slight bitter aftertaste. Medium to low carbonation, refreshing.

ABV: 5%

Score: 7.25 / 10 (Good to Very Good)

Verdict: This was surprisingly good. I can’t remember the exact price, but beer was pretty cheap in Santorini, so this bottle represented good value. This incorporated a good amount of flavour (semi-sweet, to my liking) while retaining a high amount of refreshness. Refreshability. Satiatingness.

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