Fuller’s Wild River Pale Ale

Total Score: 3.6/10 Honeycomb1 Caramel1 Barley1 Nonicpint1

I’m going to kick off this review by saying that I generally enjoy Fuller’s Ales, especially their ESB, so this brew with its promise of a tasty Fuller’s malt backed up by not a single but a ridiculous double hopping (and yes to sarcasm in that remark) had my eyes watering with delight (not really, again sarcasm). However reader unfortunately Fuller’s has either dropped the ball incredibly badly or I have received a bad bottle. Anyway on to the review!

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Almost clear honey coloured body with a thin white wisp on top. Seems a bit more pale than most Pale Ales (which to the confused reader refers to the “Pale malts” not the colour of the beer). 4/10.

S: Honey notes with some floral hop characters. Hints of a toffee malt base and not much else. This was the first sign that something was amiss with this brew: the aroma is too muted, like a glass of James Squire’s 150 Lashes Pale Ale. 3/10.

T: Straight away it comes off waaaaaay too watery and (surprisingly given its pedigree) lacking a nice big malt base. Above flavours noted. Not sure how they made it taste of honey without adding any. Finishes with a slight citric hop bitterness. I gave a friend a sip just to check if I was going crazy and he confirmed that this Pale Ale is too weak, and that I’m already crazy, thanks mate! 4/10.

M: Hugely disappointing with a mid to light watery body and fizzy carbonation. 2/10.

D: A massive let down from Fuller’s, who really should know better, they call it an American styled Pale Ale but it’s not even close to an APA… almost a drain pour (I only finished it off because hey it’s beer and I was thirsty… but if I wasn’t thirsty, yep!). I checked the date on the bottle and everything is fine, either this is a dud beer or Fuller’s intended to follow in James Squire’s footsteps (ala their 150 Lashes, a brew I detest somewhat). 4/10.

Food match: I don’t know, whatever won’t overpower the delicate flavours at play in this brew… fish and chips, salted, no vinegar.

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