Thursday, 31 October 2013

Redwood (4.8%) - Wild Beer Company

Another belter in The Broady, but not everyone`s cup of tea, I`m sure.

Over the past months, I have found increasing reasons to rave about The Broadfield and the regular appearances of this Somerset brewery`s wares are an real ale asset. The Broady is welcoming even if you are accompanied by kid or canine, want coffee or craft ale and they even have a selection of daily newspapers if you want catch up with the world as you kill an hour, or two. A real jack-of-all-trades.

 Redwood had a hand-written note on it to say that it was a very limited edition with there only being 5 (?) barrels in existence and so it cost £2.50 for a kegged half pint. The knowledgeable bar-keep also insisted that I had a (sizeable) sample as he was aware that it had a very strong taste, one which he himself disliked. I downed the taster and was in for a penny (or 250 of them in this case).

Redwood has a dark mahogany body and a super sour niff plus quite a decent head. An initial taste of balsamic was not totally pleasant but that subsides as you taste the fruity / berry elements. Often I struggle with the carbonation of kegged ale but that is not an issue with the way this was served up at my favourite Abbeydale Road alehouse. As a big fan of bold, brassy vino tintos, I lapped up the red wine taste that balances pretty skilfully with the sourness of this 4.8% beer. Not for the faint-hearted but be bold beer drinkers!

Mike`s Score - 7.5

Friday, 18 October 2013

Preston`s Premier Pub - The Continental

Cross border ventures from Yorkshire to Lancashire are only attempted by the brave and the foolhardy. Bravery can be boosted if one has prepared having perused the GBG in detail before beginning the mission but decent boozers in Lancs, whilst not exactly hen`s teeth, they are certainly sparser than in the White Rose Republic.
Bucking the trend is The Continental. This place has does a fine job of filling a (sizeable) gap in the Preston pub scene. A genuinely eclectic clientele support this South Meadow Lane establishment where punters attending a punk gig or a burlesque session may rub their Ribble-side shoulders (et al) with families tucking into the excellent food that the `Conti` menu offers. Not cheap but professional staff serving really good local food.
On the bar, you may find nationwide offerings from the likes of Huddersfield`s Summer Wine Brewery (SWB), Northumberland`s Anarchy Brewery and North Walians Purple Moose. The range varies but is usually well selected and of high quality as are the bottled offerings. Plus there is always the Pictish to fall back on or the house beer from Manc maestros Marble, Continental Bitter (3.8%) which was a snip at £2.30 last time I visited. Add on a cracking spacious beer garden, comfy seating aplenty and a back bar / tap room to give you the Continental.
Honourable mentions ought to be given to the brilliantly-named Bitter Suite which bravely offers something different in the heart of student-ville and the rough `n` ready Old Black Bull, then you have pretty much done this city in three acts. However, no one could be criticised if they chose to not drift too far from The Continental!