Total Score: 6.4/10
Next up on board the Mismatch train is Archie’s Red Ale. After their Session Ale, which was ironically a mismatch for me as I love my beers BIG* (as you should well know by now, tisk-tisk) Archie’s Red Ale could be the correctly-matched saviour to my qualms. However – and this is a ‘HOWEVER’ in caps – it lists rye as one of the malts. Now don’t get me wrong: I love rye. In fact one of my pet peeves is for brewers to say a beer has rye in it and for me not to taste earthy/peppery rye. Don’t let me down with a wry mismatch Mismatch.
Poured from a 330ml bottle into a nonic pint.
A: More of a brown than a red, there is a style called ‘Brown Ale’ Mismatch (just saying), cloudy russet hue body with a decent 1 centimetre off-white head that sticks around pretty well. Colour not being red the only major drawback in this “Red Ale”. 6/10.
S: Caramel sweetness mingles with earthy tones, a light honey note and some malt as well… definitely slanted in the Amber Ale/Red Ale territory, which is good. Not really getting any hops on the nose either. Still it’s a pretty alluring aroma. 7/10.
T: Starts out earthy and dusty (rye’s hand in this brew) then mid palate hints of caramel/honeyed sweetness (though it could definitely hit with more of this), it’s towards the finish where flavour simply vanishes with dryness that feels a bit amiss. TBH it started out OK, then became progressively better before dropping off the palate completely. As per the Session Ale: More flavour would be great. Mid palate really hints at something grand – I want more of that caramel/honey goodness! Hops? Not noticeable – but that’s fine as this works better as a sweet beer anyhow. 6/10.
M: Mid to light bodied with a thin but dense carbonation which works well. 8/10.
D: So far there’s a running theme with these Mismatch brews: Needs more flavour. I’m about to write up the Extra Pale Ale and I’m hoping/wishing/praying/kwanzaing that Mismatch have nailed a hop profile in that beer. Their website says: “this is an ode to the English…” I only got that far before I mouthed a word that starts with ‘f’ and ends with ‘k’. Which is a big shame because both of these brews are promising but far too timid for me. 6/10.
Food match: Stew (beef is a good option), throw in some crusty bread too.
*Bearing Immense Gusto, or Delectation… but BID doesn’t work as well IMO.