Are You Tasting the Pith? - 4th July 04
While it would have been easy to review a plethora of American beers for American Independence Day, and shout hideous things like "YANKEE BREWDLE DANDY!", I've instead decided to review a few Americanesque Independents (geddit?).
Bought from Ripon's wonderful new Drinks Well, in the Market Square, this strong blond ale has an appealing citrussy nose and is liberally hopped (and probably dry-hopped) with American hops, probably Cascade at a guess. Good crsip bitter hoppiness goes well into the finish, with enough body to warrant serving iot quite cool (should the bloody weather ever merit it). An excellent example of style.
Another fine ale from the same shop, Easy Rider is as its name implies - a lighter, softer version of Pale Rider. Still plenty of citrus aroma and zingy bitterness, with the hops doing most of the work rather than the light malt body.
The phrase "nice rough hop character" runs a close second to "pithy hop bitterness" in my pantheon of favourite beer tasting phrases, and this excellent IPA has both in spades. A pretty good recreation of the style, it has a firm malty body and huge bursts of orange-pith flavour. From the Hampshire Brewery, and available at Asda at the moment. Go forth, my pretties, and do your work...
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