Are You Tasting the Pith? - 3rd July 05
This cheeky little micro in Skipton, North Yorkshire has been around for a while now, but has only relatively recently started bottling. For ages, only the IPA and the 1816 were available, and I've waited for the full range before posting notes here. That took a lot longer than expected, but better late than never.
Challenger IPA (4.8% abv) is a pale, crisp and quenching version of the style - not really an IPA in the strict sense of the term, but a fairly robust golden ale. It has a good weight on the palate, and is distinctive in its dry spritziness. A good, rather than great, ale.
Scotts 1816 (4.4% abv) commits the almost unforgiveable sin of describing itself being brewed from "the choicest British malt". When will this guff cease? Either educate us by telling us the malt used, and how it affects the flavour, or please assume that we know you haven't gone and scraped some old malt off the floor. We know you do your best! We can taste it in your beer! Fortunately, 1816 is again distinctive and different, having a rounded, assertive nuttiness brought about by the choicest hops and fine malts.... no hang on, now I'm doing it. The beer maybe suffers a bit from over-carbonation, but is still worth seeking out for it's distinctive qualities.
Golden Pippin (4.2% abv) was the little bleeder that held this review up - it's a favourite on draught, albeit in at 3.8% abv rather than its bottled strength (why do brewers do this? answers in an email please). Delightfully, it loses none of its zesty citrus edge in the bottle - think of a bottle of Harviestoun Bitter & Twisted served with a slice of lemon and some elderflower blossom floating in it, and you'd be getting close. Quite delicious, and possibly one to watch for the CAMRA beer of the year, should it be entered.
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