As normal activity returns to the best beer shop in the world, I thought it would be good to write about a new beer we got in just before our doors shut. It's an old ale. It's a collaboration ale. It's from Thornbridge and Darkstar. (I do hope Darkstar don't mind me pinching their image, my cameras at the fixers at the mo! sorry xx)
Apparently this 7% old ale has spent 20 months in a conditioning tank and 4 plus months in the bottle before it was released for sale! So yes it's old, but has the aging process been beneficial to the end product? After all it's a long time to wait if the beer doesn't come out right in the end!
Well, YES, it was worth the wait, below is what I thought:
A dark gold/amber looking brew, with a quickly disappearing chalky head. The beer comes across the nose with hints of lemon grass and gooseberry and a slice of orange pith, do I detect some glazed cherries in there too? I do get a little honeycomb like the label suggests but not a lot.
First impressions on the flavour - It's a tangy beer, lots of orange rind and caramel malt sweetness. Quite thick, still with a good carbonation zing. Some bitter citrus notes all along the finish, mixed with a burp of honeycomb sweetness. Some peppery alcohol warming-ness which makes it very moorish, dangerous at 7%! A soft beer with some woody resinous notes, one to sip and savour with some strong cheeses :)
Overall: a perfectly planned beer has been created within the minds of Darkstar and Thornbridge, and is now available for regular human consumption. You can still get plenty of the beer from Beer Ritz as I've heard there is quite a bit up at the warehouse! Seek it out, it's definitely worth it. There aren't enough fantastic old ales around these days, it's always nice to see modern breweries brewing gems of beer styles.... it's good to be back as-well!