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26-03-2010, 10:31
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Last December I went down to Sharps (http://www.sharpsbrewery.co.uk/) to help brew (or rather watch it being brewed) Winter Berry. When Stuart Howe first asked me to come up with a receipt for a winter beer, I suggested at least 7% abv, but it was not to be (4.5% was its strength). However, the other day a couple of bottles of a 9.3% version arrived in the post. Hooray! Hereís what I thought: a dark ancient sideboard handed down the centuries sort of colour, the nose reminiscent of those juicy fruit chews we had as kids (black currant flavour perhaps?). Drinks deceptively easy, a voluptuous, rich and secretive body and the sort of beer that will improve with age I reckon; at the moment itís sweet shop fruit gums on the palate with a sugary depth but nothing too sweet, thereís a big bitter finish; there are berries in the background on both the palate and finish. For itís strength itís remarkably viscous and rich without being too sweet, and itís incredibly well balanced. This brewing thing is a right lark innit?
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