St. George’s English AleMarch 1, 2006 Wandsworth, London, England
Young's Brewery Wandsworth, London, England Available: All States Alcohol (vol.): 5.2% Color: Amber Malts used: Maris Otter, Crystal Hops used: Fuggles, Goldings, English Pilgrim
British ales described on their labels as “smooth” make me nervous, but thankfully this copper-colored brew is no widget-y abomination. Blessed with the full perfume of English hops backed by soft notes of muddled fruit, it offers in the body first fruitiness in the form of soft apricot and perhaps a hint of pear, and then a malt-accented hoppiness that gives rise to spicy tobacco notes. A lightly spicy bitterness lingers on the finish. Although strong by British standards for a session beer, that’s how I’ll enjoy it, and happily so.
- Stephen Beaumont
Full-bodied head, with an effusive winey-grape aroma with hints of malt. Traditional malt and hop flavor with a hint of toffee; added touch of a well-traveled beer. Not tasting vibrant and fresh, but still a very pleasurable experience. A good session beer that sings of the British pub tradition. More enjoyable at temperatures in the high 40s and low 50s —avoid typical ice-cold serving temps for the best experience.
- Charlie Papazian
A hazy honey-colored beer pours from the handsome custom-made bottle. The nose shows some hop aromatics and a backdrop of biscuity malt, but also some sherry and apple notes. The bitterness is broad and the palate light and brisk, finishing cleanly. Young’s is among my favorite breweries, and I’m sure this beer is characterful when fresh. This bottle, only two weeks short of its best-by date, was rather tired. A fresh bottle would no doubt be just the thing with fish and chips.
- Garrett Oliver
Stephen Beaumont boarded his first plane at the age of 15 and hasn’t looked back since, obsessing about travel to the point that he gets nervous if he doesn’t have a ticket or two stacked on the corner of his desk. When he’s not running around in search of new taste experiences, he makes his home in Toronto, where a new cultural experience is only as far away as the next neighborhood.
Author of the New Complete Joy of Homebrewing, founder of the Great American Beer Festival and a Beer Examiner at www.examiner.com, Papazian is a leading voice in beer and brewing.
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.
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