Ads not shown when logged in
Results 1 to 10 of 15

Thread: Weak Beer, Strong Flavour

Hybrid View

  1. #1

    Default Weak Beer, Strong Flavour

    When it comes to choosing a pint I tend to head to the middle range of the spectrum, 4.3% to 5.3% say, as it allows a few to go down with decent character and flavour. It also avoids the often insipid beers found at 4% and below. The ubiquitous GK IPA springs to mind.

    I have found a number of beers recently though at 4% and below which really pack in the flavour and character. A testament to the bewers art, these beers are, to the non-brewing expert, clever, welcome and very drinkable.

    Three top beers which I've tried recently are Marble W90 at 3.9%, Black Hole Brewery Asteroid and Blue Monkey Evolution both at 4%. All breweries producing top quality ales in my experience.

    Is this a new trend as I can't remember drinking many great beers at the lower end of the strength spectrum, how do the brewers do it and are there any more good examples of lower strength beers punching well above their weight for flavour?
    Last edited by Thuck Phat; 05-02-2011 at 09:13.

  2. #2
    Pub researcher (unpaid) rpadam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Somewhere in the Low Weald
    Posts
    3,852

    Default

    Harveys (Sussex) is 'just' 4.0%, and that works for me (although I wouldn't really call it a weak beer).

    And Cwrw Glaslyn from Bragdy Mŵs Piws (OK, it's the Glaslyn Ale from the Purple Moose Brewery) at 4.2% would be well into the 'medium' category in my opinion.

    However, these are probably both "full of flavour" rather "strong flavour" (which is probably no bad thing, given the ghastly efforts from some brewers who stick ginger, liquorice, chocolate and goodness knows what into their beer in an attempt to make them stand out).

    (I was going to finish this by making a cheap jibe about Greene King IPA, but...).
    Last edited by rpadam; 05-02-2011 at 09:52.

  3. #3
    I'll stay on me own PaulOfHorsham's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Mainly Sussex but I like to move about
    Posts
    466

    Default

    A couple of beers of similar style (and both coming in at 3.8%) are Oakham JHB and Dark Star Hophead, both also, as Thuck mentions, quality breweries. These have both been around for a good many years (though neither as long as Harvey's Sussex Best!) and are fairly common in discerning free houses.

    I'm hoping to get hold of some King Brighton Best shortly - this is 4% and I've been hearing good things, so it's time to form my own opinion, I think.

  4. #4
    This Space For Hire
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Warwickshire
    Posts
    1,460

    Default

    That's the glory of English beer. I cut my teeth on Brakespear's ordinary bitter, all of 3.5% and Morland's, which must have been around the same. Both were packed with flavour and you could have quite a few pints without risk of talking nonsense. Young's ordinary is about the same strength, and Harvey's Pale (ala Hadlow) though a little watery in comparison to Best has vastly more flavour than any comparable strength lager - Carling, Carlsberg etc - will ever manage to deliver. To achieve any sort of flavour at all they need the sweetness from a high alcohol content, hence 1664, Grolsh, 'beater and the rest are all over 5% and you're a dribbling mess by the fifth pint.
    Last edited by NickDavies; 05-02-2011 at 10:39. Reason: typo

  5. #5
    Pub researcher (unpaid) rpadam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Somewhere in the Low Weald
    Posts
    3,852

    Default

    And how about Hobsons Mild at just 3.2%? The following blurb is taken from the brewery website, but isn't wide of the mark:

    "CAMRA Champion Beer of Britain 2007, Hobsons Mild has a smooth character and taste notes of chocolate malt which gives this beer plenty of flavour and aroma that belies its strength. A British classic crafted to Hobsons special recipe makes this a nutty mild and despite being only 3.2% abv it's packed full of flavour."

  6. #6
    We're not really 'ere! trainman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    down 'ere, from oop there
    Posts
    2,005

    Default

    Brewdog Edge (3.2%) & Brodies' Citra (3.1%) are very different examples of packing flavour into lower abv beers.

  7. #7
    Pussy Galore No 1 Oggwyn Trench's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Nearer than you think
    Posts
    1,494

    Default

    As well as the great Mild , Hobsons Twisted Spire (3.6%) is a cracking pint , from the historic All Nations , Shires Dabley Ale (3.8%) another cracker and two from Purple Moose , Snowdonia Ale (3.6%) and Madogs Ale (3.7%) both gorgeous
    Theres a Man with a Mullet going Mad with a Mallet in Millets !

  8. #8
    Old & Bitter oldboots's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    God's Own County
    Posts
    5,427

    Default

    Brewdog Nanny State (1.1%) anyone?

    "Nanny State is an extraordinary little beer. It contains more hops than any other beer we have ever brewed. There is over 60 kilos used in our tiny 20HL batch. It contains more hops than any other beer ever brewed in the UK. It has a theoretical IBU of 225. It is jam packed with our favourite hops and already tastes amazing. Nanny State picks up where How to Disappear Completely left off and takes the low ABV hop-bomb concept to the next level and cranks the BrewDog craziness up a few notches."
    Drink drink, whoever you may be,
    we are the drunk and disorderly,
    and we’ll drink more beer wherever we may be,
    and we’ll meet you all in a pub said he.

    Dr Busker

  9. #9
    This Space For Hire aleandhearty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    West Yorkshire
    Posts
    3,156

    Default

    A fair amount of crossover in my choices. The four that immediately sprang to mind were Hobson's Mild, BrewDog Edge, Dark Star Hophead and Marble Three Point Nine. I'm sure there are plenty of others though.
    'And where he supped the past lived still. And where he sipped the glass brimmed full' John Barleycorn, Carol Ann Duffy.

  10. #10
    This Space For Hire gillhalfpint's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    West Midlands
    Posts
    1,488

    Default

    Nanny State didn't do anything for us at all. Must admit I have found some lower ABV beers around the 3.8 mark full of flavour, and I don't mean by using fruit and ginger additives which I am not struck on. Been a few pleasant suprises this last 12 months or so.

Similar Threads

  1. The Pub Curmudgeon - Strong bottles
    By Blog Tracker in forum Blog Tracker
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 30-01-2011, 15:53
  2. Shut up about Barclay Perkins - IPA was not a strong beer
    By Blog Tracker in forum Blog Tracker
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 15-12-2010, 13:00
  3. The Pub Curmudgeon - Fear of flavour
    By Blog Tracker in forum Blog Tracker
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 15-08-2010, 11:23
  4. Woolpack Dave's Beer and Stuff - Strong Beer
    By Blog Tracker in forum Blog Tracker
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 01-06-2010, 22:10
  5. Shut up about Barclay Perkins - Strong Ale ca 1955
    By Blog Tracker in forum Blog Tracker
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-03-2010, 08:45

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •