Hoppy Xmas Countdown – 22 Dec

Sorry for the late blog guys. I had some backing and forthing about which beer to review today. I literally drank something last night that I don’t want to write about yet and some other brews I had lined up were all too familiar (or from breweries I’ve covered in this series). So after much deliberation, I finally chose a beer. And damn it, I’m drinking it.

Name: Goliath
Brewery: Wychwood Brewery
Country: Witney, England
Style: English Bitter
Rating: 2.75 / 5

Ok, half the reason I even bought this beer is for the label. I don’t know if you guys have seen some of the Wychwood brews around, but their labels are pretty epic. Makes one think of pagans, war and ye olden days when fair was spelt fayre. Very medieval. This Goliath has a pretty awesome looking warrior on it, led by a wolf and the tag line is “The beer to slay a mighty thirst” – great right?

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Unfortunately it’s not as great as it sounds. It’s not off or infected or bad in any way, it’s just… not for me.

It pours a rich copper with a good dose of fine head. The aromas are a mix of toffee and bread with a little red wine in there. It’s fairly bitter, in an earthy way (as opposed to a tropical,hoppy way). There’s a real bittersweet malt kick in the front while it dissipates a little too quickly on the finish. It’s a 4.2% beer but actually tastes heavier than that, which is unusual. Not bad,  just a little underwhelming.

I think that the style has a lot to do with that. My brother in law swears by English Ales. Every beer he has recommended that we try are inevitably too bland or too insipid for my tastes. I suppose when you drink a lot of different beer you come to expect certain things done well. I’m not saying that every beer should be over 6% with heaps of hops, but any given style has it’s criteria and for an English Bitter, I’d rather you try the New Brixton or a Fullers ESB. Those are great examples of the style done well.
Anyway, if you’re into English Ales, this one is probably right down your alley!

Tomorrow and Saturday, we’re going dark…. for our finale on Christmas Eve. Cheers!

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