I saw quite a lot of love for Old Dan when it first came out, but for some reason I never bothered tracking it down to try. I thought it was about time I tried it, so picked up a bottle when I saw one in a local supermarket.
For a beer that has Bottle Conditioned front and centre on the label, it sure didn’t appear to be bottle conditioned at all. There was no sediment sliding down the bottle during the pour and none left in the bottle after the pour; just a complete absence of yeast sediment. To be honest, the first thing I thought of was that they must tank condition it and then centrifuge it, before bottling, but from the horses mouth:
— Ian Bearpark (@ianbeerpack) December 16, 2013
Lack of yeast sediment aside, it poured a lovely chestnut brown colour with a compact head. The head didn’t last and disappeared completely after a relatively short while. The nose was all classic rich plummy stewed fruit and quite appealing. Taste wise, it was pretty much the same, full bodied, malty, with just enough of a tickle of bitterness to stop it going all sickly. The aftertaste was a lengthy affair of bitter sweet subtle marmalade flavours and was really quite moreish.
It’s a nice beer and as it’s in the ASDA buy 4 for £5 deal, pretty good value at £1.25 each if you buy four. So while it’s a nice beer and currently good value in ASDA, it’s still not really my cup of tea, I much prefer their Crafty Dan, which made the Grand Final of this years Sainsbury’s Great British Beer Hunt.