Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Mosaic Single Hop IPA - Arbor

Another nomination for beer of the year! Also a lesson in how different an ale can taste in two different establishments.

Arbor Ales have shown themselves to be one of the most reliable producers of fine beer recently, possibly the best in the South-West, and it is a pleasure to see them appearing with increasing frequency around the Steel City. The Broadfield and The Sheffield Tap have recently housed their beers but I stumbled across this delight in Sheffield`s pub of the year, Shakespeares. Although it was early and my first beer of the day, I had to have a pint and was delighted that it was just £3.30, which I knew to be very reasonable for a proper IPA (6.8%!) from a top notch producer; I was not disappointed. Served in one of Shakey`s over-sized pint pots this beauty is full-flavoured showcasing a tremendous hop. Mosaic is complex, earthy and floral with a quite pungent aroma. It is quite a hazy amber colour and citrusy enough to suit my taste nicely. Wow! The rest of the day`s beer was never going to live up to this!

However, the day after I spied the same beer at The Rutland and opted for a half, baulking at the way higher price tag (£4.25 a pint, I think). It was served in a posh glass which, to be fair, can help bring out the flavour in such complex beers, but it just did not measure up. I think the main problem was the temperature; it was a little on the warm side so the `zing` was not quite there. The difference in price is also astounding. A real shame but at least I didn`t have a full pint to bemoan.

Mike`s score - 8.5 (10 for the one at Shakey`s but 7 for Rutland`s)

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