Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby MildSeptember 1, 2000 Sedgley, England
Sarah Hughes Brewery
Imported by: B. United International
Available: NY, NJ, CT, MA, MD, DC, VA, PA, GA, KY, OH, IN, IL, MI, WI, MN, CA
Originally brewed in the early 1900s by Mrs. Hughes at her brewpub, the Beacon Hotel in the West Midlands of England, the beer was revived by her grandson John in 1987. It is a rare example of the mild style still available today.
Original gravity: 1058
Complex, complex, complex—yet smooth and satisfying. There's some roastiness and some chocolatyness rounding itself to a mellow toffee-like finish. The beer is a bit stronger than expected from a "mild," but who's complaining. Not me. Sara Hughes is a pleasure to savor after a good swim, taking note of the visual and audio character of the beautiful red head, which has a relatively fast clicking sound that is almost a buzz, yet low in intensity. A chocolate peanut butter cup only enhances the gustatory enjoyment of the moment.
- Fred Eckhardt
Deep reddish brown with a fluffy tan head. The aroma is fruity and heady—prunes, strawberries, and a strong note of figs. On the palate, the beer is surprising—bone-dry with a fine acidity and light hopping. Fruity malt flavors drive through to a long, lingering finish. Very complex, and a throwback of a beer, reminiscent of Gales Prize Old Ale and Liefman’s Goudenband. A great beer for food; it also reminds me of an Oregon pinot noir. It would be terrific with aged cheeses or a creamy dessert.
- Garrett Oliver
Mahogany to dark brown. Spicy aroma. Oily body. Slightly medicinal palate. A touch of phenol. Smoky. Rooty. Licorice. Cough drop sweets. Fruity, winey, sappy dry finish. Somewhere between a strong mild and an old ale. This toasty ale is made at a revived brewpub in the industrial “Black Country” of the English Midlands. It hints at the restorative brews favored by foundry workers in the industrial heyday.
- Michael Jackson
Fred Eckhardt lives, writes about and drinks beer in Portland, OR. He is the author of The Essentials of Beer Style and Saké.
Internationally recognized brewer and expert on traditional beer, Garrett Oliver is the brewmaster of the Brooklyn Brewery and the author of The Brewmaster's Table.
Author of Ultimate Beer, the Simon & Schuster Guide to Beer and numerous other works on drinks, Jackson has created legions of converts to fine beer.