Brewdog Vagabond Pale Ale

Brewdog: Prototype: Vagabond Pale Ale: Gluten Free (Scotland: American Pale Ale: 4.5% ABV)

Visual: Yellowed gold. Thin white head and some carbonation.

Nose: Apricot. Banana sweets. Moderate hops and bitterness. Pineapple. Palma violets.

Body: Pineapple. Custard. Vanilla toffee. Peach. Fruit syrup and fruit sugars. Mildly thin feel. Light prickle.

Finish: Brown bread. Hoppy and bitterness. Light kiwi fruit.

Conclusion: So, Gluten Free eh? Erm, ok, time to say something well informed, well researched, and otherwise establishes me as someone who knows what he is talking about. Shitstemcockcells. Ok, I may have failed that one. Time to own up, sorry guys, gals and whatever your preferred term is for anyone who is non gender binary, I don’t really know much about the qualities of gluten free beers. Sorry.

So, I will mainly shoot on this as a standard set of beer notes. If the state of gluten free beers is particularly shockingly bad then – oh, BTW spoiler warning – this is a pretty middle of the road beer as far as American Pale Ales go. So, it may be great as far as gluten free beers go for all I know.

Right, with that out of the way. This is a pretty stand pale ale in an American style. Citrus aroma, here done as a mix of tart pineapple and sweeter peach notes. Pretty much exactly what you would expect. The body is just slightly thin, but not massively so, and thankfully isn’t suffering from the over attenuation that hits so many of the style.

The body isn’t big, but isn’t terrible, fairly middle of the road and damned with faint praise. The finish comes in a bit simple, almost brown bread and hops, with little of the citrus notes lasting through this far. The finish is therefore easily the weakest part of the beer.

Also, I noticed the body is at its best early on in the beer. By the half way point the initial good impression was starting to flag – the citrus notes wane as you get used to them, and the bready finish seems to start backing up into the main body.

So, yeah, not an exceptional beer, but not shit. If you don’t have medical reasons for selecting it then I can’t recommend it – if you do, well then you probably know a lot more about the state of gluten free ale than me, so you will know if otherwise middle of the road is worth it. If this is really good for a gluten free ale then you have my sympathies

Background: So, I recently completed the second series of Telltale’s Walking Dead games. So, as anyone who may have played them will know, I was in dire need of some emotional reassurance. So I had a beer. This may say bad things about my way of handling emotional problems come to think of it. Anyway…The last in Brewdog’s prototype set, this one a Gluten free beer. Since I have no allergy to Gluten I haven’t really run into any Gluten free beers before. As always I am not an unbiased actor on Brewdog beers. Oh, and The Walking Dead games are seriously awesome, if utterly heartbreaking.

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