Our oldest alcohol craft in England is beer. We brew it, drink it and we can’t get enough of it. According to The Institute of Brewing and Distilling’s registered educational charity, the “Beer Academy”, 25 million of us Britons consume in excess of £18 million worth of beer every year.
Match our impressive love for beer with the wild but much-adored British summer season, and you have an abundance of choice for what to drink. But for those of you looking to wet your palettes and try something new this summer, here are 5 ales everyone needs to give a go…
1. London Pride
Brewery: Fuller’s, Chiswick Lane, London
Type: Golden Ale
Alcohol (500ml): 4.7%
For every beer lover, London Pride is a crown jewel. Balancing strong malty flavour with a smooth, carbonated medium body makes for wonderful sunshine drinking.
Light amber in colour, Fuller’s flagship ale shows off aromas of caramel and malted barley. Its complexity comes in the grassy and bitter notes, mixed with dried fruits, which are enjoyed as the beer is moved around the mouth.
2. Old Crafty Hen
Brewery: Morland Brewery, Suffolk
Type: Oak-aged Vintage Ale
Alcohol (500ml): 6.5%
Prefer something a little more full-bodied without going for a winter beer? Morland’s Old Crafty Hen is the perfect tipple for you.
Its rich toffee and malt flavours, combined over caramel and raisin with a rounded bitter finish makes for a beer with packs of character while remaining clean and refreshing.
Bread notes ensure the ale is not too sweet, cementing its place in my five summer ales.
Serve slightly chilled.
3. Doom Bar
Brewery: Sharp’s Brewery, N. Atlantic Coast, Cornwall
Type: Amber Bitter
Alcohol (500ml): 4.3%
This award-winning amber bitter is a superb all-rounder. Its character comes from delicious chocolate and sultana flavours with a thirst-quenching smooth finish.
There is some complexity in small notes of citrus on the tip of the tongue, but what shouts from Doom Bar’s corner is how drinkable it is.
This is the perfect afternoon pint.
Always serve chilled.
4. Golden Champion
Brewery: Badger Ales, Blandford, Dorset
Type: Fruity Golden Ale
Alcohol (500ml): 5.0%
There’s malt lovers, bitter lovers, full body character lovers, but we can’t forget the fruity beer lovers. Sweet, zesty and packed with orange and summer fruit, Badger’s Golden Champion is a light-bodied joy.
Unlike its Badger counterparts, like the Golden Glory, the Champion never seems sickly or clammy, even at room temperatures. Instead you have a confident, charming fruit beer.
5. Golden Hare
Brewery: Bath Ales, Warmley
Type: Light Golden Ale
Alcohol (500ml): 4.4%
Fancy something unbelievably refreshing? Then look no further than Bath Ales’ Golden Hare. Its light, almost-yellow body allures you into its straw, grassy and crisply citrus notes not far off from a top market pale ale.
Bath Ales have worked hard, and this Hare is rounded, smooth and far from gassy. It also ticks all the boxes when it comes to a light summer’s lunch.
Serve slightly chilled.
Remember to be sensible when you’re sipping on these ales, check out the facts here.
Written By Ben Franks, Edited by Laura Thompson
Our guest writer Ben has many more reviews on his website…check them out!