We’re down to the last two beers and so end my reviews of the sixteen finalists in the Sainsbury’s Great British Beer Hunt 2011.
The penultimate beer is Wye Valley’s Wye Not?, it poured a crystal clear golden, light amber, with a loose white head. The head took a while to get going and dropped fairly quickly to a blotchy covering. The label says this is bottle conditioned and while there was sediment at the bottom of the bottle, it seemed glued there as none came down the bottle during the pour.
Not sure what it smelt of to be honest, I certainly didn’t get any citrus notes, no matter how hard I tried to find them. Once I got to the bottom of the glass thought, I could be kind and say there was a waft of citrus, but I’d be being terribly, terribly kind.
It was quite smooth in the mouth with a subtle malty sweetness. The initial flavour had a cereal quality to it, this was then swept away in a wave of subtle, but prickly, bitterness that filled the mouth. The after taste was a lingering cereal flavour, that lasted for ages and ages.
It wasn’t a bad beer, I quite enjoyed it, although I wasn’t so keen on the cereal quality.
- Wye Valley
- Wye Not?, 4.5%, 500ml
Finally we have Hunter’s Full Bore, the one beer that I was frightened of out of the sixteen. It’s not that it was 8%, but that it’s brewed with both honey and golden syrup, so I was expecting a massively sweet malt bomb, which is really not my kind of beer.
It poured a lovely chestnut brown, with a decent brownish cream head. The head didn’t last long and dropped to a blotchy thin covering, but recovered a bit to a solid compact covering. The nose didn’t appear to have much going on, other than some soft green apple notes.
Taste wise, it wasn’t a million miles from what I’d been fearing. The mouth feel was unsurprisingly large, with seriously sweet malty flavours, the honey was also noticeably present. There was some bitterness towards the end of the swallow with a bit of an effervescent prickle, but it wasn’t enough to counter the immense sweetness. The after taste was complex, with honey flavours in the mix, but was mainly just lingering sweetness.
It wasn’t a bad beer, it just wasn’t my kind of beer.