Brains SA Gold

Total Score: 6.7/10 Lemon1 Biscuit1 Tea1 Nonicpint1

Well I’m back for more Brains, like the incessant beer zombie I am, this time I received a recommendation from a Welshman (those people from Wales), and I work in a bottleshop now – imagine that – the bottleshop attendant receiving a recommendation from a customer! Anyway I thought I would give it a go as I have a tendency to neglect Wales (don’t we all) and her lovely names with multiple consonants like: Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, which is the second longest place name in the world after: Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu (in New Zealand, I kid you not).

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Hazy light honey coloured body with a nice compact 2cm white head on top, tis a Pale Ale in more than just name. 7/10.

S: Light citrus (lemon drops) mingles with a broad toasted biscuit base and some tea leaf in the background, it’s a very Oxfordshire Pale Ale aroma then, and quite strong for a 4.7% ABV brew. Nice, not outstanding, just nice. 7/10.

T: Not as sweet as expected, that lemon drop flavour is more bitter than sweet and the toasted biscuit provides a hint of sweetness with a dry cracker note. Finishes with that much expected, and perhaps maligned – depending on your stance on tea, black tea leaf character. Hint of sour in there from the citric note gives this brew some intriguing complexity, but ultimately there are some outstanding English Ales out there, and competing against them is a challenge. 7/10.

M: Mid to light bodied with a light English (or should I say “Welsh”?) pub carbonation. 6/10.

D: It’s a good drop this, not Bishops Finger or Landlord great, but nonetheless decent. I did however keep reminding myself that I have the new and exceedingly well-priced cans of Bishops Finger beckoning in my fridge (from Plonk)… Plonk also have Hobgoblin cans, a different style yes but also excellent (and on my mind)… too many great English Ales, too little time. Oh and the flavour of this is a little more dry than I like. 6/10.

Food match: Label says: White fish and cheese, obviously not together on the same plate, I agree with this recommendation.

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