Saturday, 5 January 2013

Wychwood Brewery - Ginger Beard

Wychwood Brewery – Ginger Beard

Right oh folks, I am excited to bring you the first International ginger beer review on the All About Cider blog. This new edition called ‘Ginger Beard’ hails from Oxfordshire in England and is made by the Wychwood Brewery. The brewery itself is apart of the Marston’s group who are an independent brewing and pub retailing business in England. They own several breweries across the country and possess a large portfolio of beers.
This ‘fiery alcoholic ginger beer’ (as it says on the label), is an amber ale at heart with ginger root being infused to give it a kick. So what that meant to me was that there was going to be maltiness and body in the drink. The colour was a real dark golden brown – or amber, and was filtered clear. There was a large mousse once poured into the glass, with a nice constant bead. I have read previous reviews claiming this example had poor carbonation. I must have struck it lucky, because this was right on the money. The nose smelt like Christmas, with real tempting ginger bread spice and cinnamon infused into the beery, malt base. A big waft of chilli burnt the insides of the nostrils which was unexpected, but well received. Other characters of vanilla, creaming soda, molasses and lemons burst out in an excitable fashion. This was a really funky nose, and I liked it lots.

The palate offered up some really interesting features too. The mouth feel was thick and creamy, with just a hint of sweetness. The sweetness was overshadowed by a big whack of drying bitterness with lots of bite to it. The finish was very malty, spicy (like chilli seeds), and warm. The heat seemed to linger for an eternity too. It really tasted like a beer with a creaming soda, clove and candy apple angle to it, which made it super addictive. But I would have liked to see more ginger characters.  
This is Christmas in a bottle, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I loved the fact that the sweetness wasn’t in your face, and the chilli spice hit was a great surprise. The alcohol was a very reasonable 4.2 per cent too. This ginger beer needs to be enjoyed in a cold glass on a hot day I reckon. Really cool example of an English ginger beer, so give it a go as it is readily available in Australia.

Producer:  Wychwood  Brewery (Marston’s PLC)
Region: Oxfordshire (UK)
Alcohol: 4.2%

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