Ruby Rooster

Lidl UK: Hatherwood: Ruby Rooster (England: Bitter: 3.8% ABV)

Visual: Ruby to black cherry red. Reddened brown large inch and a half of froth that leaves suds.

Nose: Earthy. Slight spice and cinnamon. Banoffee. Potatoes.

Body: Banana. Caramel. Apricot. Peanuts. Potatoes. Earthy. Slick texture. Lightly bitter, Cinnamon. Light citrus.

Finish: Banana ice cream syrup. Apricot. Light bitterness. Caramel. Light earth.

Conclusion: You know, I took a look online after doing this review and saw this beer getting quite the kicking online, with lots of jokes about it being a Lidl beer, but the thing is… I found it to be a nicely balanced beer. A bit of traditional earthy style, but generally a smooth gently sweet beer with main style of banana and caramel, understated but soothing.

Now it isn’t all great, there is this almost potato character that brings it down, but the nutty and surrounding earthy hops contrast nicely with the smooth and sweet main base. It isn’t the heaviest beer, which may put people off, but it doesn’t seem thin or weak, just mellow. There is a bit of cinnamon spice an apricot to give a few frills, but for the main part it feels like a very traditional bitter, the extra elements seem like bonuses rather than work to eclipse the base bitter style.

I will say it doesn’t in any way push the envelope, instead turning out a competent but not very exciting base beer, however as the word says, it is competently delivered. With the exception of that potato element that brings down everything else in the beer, it is actually a solid and quite enjoyable ale.

Solid, soothing, far from perfect but a nice mix of a few new elements on a traditional ale. I think it deserves better the kicking it’s getting.

Background: Lidl is a very cheap supermarket, and it turns out they commission beers to be made on their behalf – in this case brewed at Wychwood. They are cheap, but not necessarily bad – however considering it is commissioned by a fucking supermarket I find labeling it “Craft Brewed” to be a tad taking the piss, and makes me think that there may be something in getting a definition for that term after all. An idea I previously opposed for a while. This was one of a set of beers provided by my parents while I was back home over Christmas so I decided to give it a review. Many thanks for providing the beer (oh and food, and shelter, and bringing me up, and all the rest)

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