So, this is a special beer. Just 1215 bottles brewed, in joint celebration of beer day (15th June, that’s today) and the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carter (in 1215, hence the number of bottles produced). The distinctive thing about this bottle-conditioned golden ale is that it contains botanicals representing the four members of the UK, in addition to the Sovreign and Boadicea hops and Maris Otter barley. They are: seaweed for Wales; flax seed for Northern Ireland; heather for Scotland and rose petals for England.
Brewster’s Britannia’s Brew
Orange/gold colour. Quite flat. Subdued but interesting nose of warm herbs and spice with a bit of malt. The palate is savoury, slightly bitter, slightly earthy and a bit herby. It’s well balanced, pleasant and quite English, with medium body, but it is a bit flat, alas, which makes this bottle taste a bit more cask-like, which isn’t a terrible thing. 7/10
This wheat beer from Munich is really good, and it’s widely available in supermarkets, too. The brewery that makes it, Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu, dates back all the way to 1363. Now it’s part of the Spaten-Löwenbräu-Gruppe which is owned by giant brewing company Anheuser-Busch InBev. (I guess this explains the wide distribution.) Franziskaner translates Franciscan, hence the monk on the label.
Franziskaner Hefe Weissbier
Lively aromatic nose with sour cherry notes as well as citrus, yeast and a hint of malt. Pure, textured palate is rounded and appealing but also has some spicy bite. Tastes very natural and wholesome. 8/10
This is good, It’s a beer from Japan, made by the Kiuchi Brewery. Founded in 1823 as a Sake producer, Kiuchi began making beer in 1996, and they’re really good at it. Then in 2000, they began making small quantities of wine from a vineyard they planted next to the brewery.
This, their white ale, is made in the style of a Belgian wheat beer, with added wheat, barley, coriander, nutmeg, orange peel and orange juice. It’s also beautifully packaged.
Hitachino Nest White Ale
Very warm, fresh spicy nose with notes of coriander, citrus, spice and even a bit of ginger-like bite. Fresh and fruity with nice texture. Quite Belgian in style with some weissbier hints. Lovely. 8/10