While not right on my doorstep, Wye Valley brewery is reasonably local to me, and you occasionally see their beers on tap around our way. Their HPA has lubricated many a hungover Sunday afternoon pool session, and Butty Bach was my ale of choice for our wedding last December. So, I was intrigued to see this beer, with its retro-sexist label, in my Beerbods box.
Also, I was on a mission this week. Last year, almost to the day, I was decorating the kitchen and I promised myself a beer and a Chinese while watching Doctor Who as my post-blue-job treat. I was looking forward to it all day. Thing is, having only recently moved house, we had no local intelligence around the quality of the various takeaway establishments and I ended up with one of the worst I have ever had. I was bitterly disappointed and so, as I set about decorating the lounge this Saturday I resolved to lay this disappointment to rest.
First coat of emulsion drying, I secured myself a Singapore style Chow Mein and some Capital spare ribs and settled down with Dorothy and The Doctor.
It has to be said, I’m pretty rubbish at identifying flavours when I go to tastings. It’s not so much that I can’t pick out the notes, more that I can’t place or describe them out of context. So I’ll be floundering to find a word for the flavour I’m tasting, until someone says “green apples” or “toast”, and that’s exactly it and I just have to agree and nod.
All if which is to say that I was surprised when I popped the cap off this and immediately got a massive waft of pineapple. I wasn’t expecting it, and I certainly wasn’t expecting to recognise it. Less sharply citrus than the Yellowhammer, this is creamier and sweeter and has a faintly bananaish finish. Tropical fruits seem to get picked out as flavour notes in a lot of these Pale Ales, and they’re definitely present here. It had enough body to stand up to the big flavours of my dinner (the label recommends it with Lamb Tagine, which seems weirdly specific), and was a refreshing cut-through the spiciness. That said, I don’t know it was memorable enough for me to seek it out, or to stock up the shed with it. Enjoyable, but slightly underwhelming in the end. Not unlike that week’s Doctor Who, actually.