Summer Swallow

Batemans: Summer Swallow (England: Bitter: 4.2% ABV)

Visual: Golden brown. White bubbled head. Moderate carbonation.

Nose: Muted hop character. Syrup. Wheat fields.

Body: Malt biscuits. Toffee and lemon sherbet. Golden syrup. Light chalk back. Light orange.

Finish: Lemon curd. Toffee. Golden syrup. Menthol.

Conclusion: A summer beer. Which I drank in the midst of winter. I’m really good at doing this whole seasonally appropriate review thing am I not? Even ignoring the incongruous timing of drinking this is a mild one. There is a slight fizzy chalky texture over a smooth toffee base body and…well, that is mostly it.

The concessions to a summer style come in a small amount of fruit flavour added in, that being lemon sherbet and some orange flavour intermingled with the base body. It really isn’t that exciting I have to admit. Despite the chalky touch there is a syrupy feel to the beer that makes it seem very artificial, the flavour is simple and dull, and the use of hop character feels very closed.

You know, considering the kicking yesterdays beer from Lidl gets, I think the people should save their pitchforks for this one. It just feels lazy. On the up side the base toffee sweetness is pleasant, but there is no element hanging off that to give it any depth. The beer attempts for freshness with the lemon sherbet but ends up more with a clinging menthol touch that lasts too long.

Not a favourite then as you might have guessed, and not one I can recommend.

Background: Another beer kindly provided by my mum and dad while I was visiting over Christmas. Many thanks. This was drunk while waiting for the Doctor Who Christmas Special to come on. The beer comes in a clear glass bottle, which tends not to be the best for holding lighter coloured beers. Ah well.

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