Beeston: On The Huh (England: ESB: 5% ABV)
Visual: Deep chestnut brown – opaque in the centre. A red-brown loose bubbled head that leaves a lot of suds.
Nose: Malt chocolate and nuts. Cinnamon buns. Vanilla ice cream.
Body: Malt chocolate and caramel. Slightly bitty feel. Peanuts. Light earthy notes. Quite sweet. Vanilla. Pepper. Cinnamon.
Finish: Peppermint. Earthy. Chocolate and peanuts. Slightly bitter.
Conclusion: I think that this is the second beer of recent times that I have compared to a snickers bar. Though this one differs from the last in that it is a more real ale take on the style meaning it is less smooth, more earthy, but still with those distinct chocolate, peanuts and caramel characteristics. Maybe this is the new trend – chocolate bar beers.
The real ale style seems to give this a few more rounding notes that you would otherwise expect. The main set is those naturally more rustic notes that real ale seems to do well. Slight peppery, slight greenery – while it makes it less close to the snickers concept it gives a much less sickly beer overall, so easier to drink for more than a single pint.
So, at its heart it is still a snickers beer, but its soul is an earthy real ale with contrasting pepper and cinnamon at each end of the spice range. It doesn’t do too bad at all. More one to have as a gentle beer in front of a warm fire on a cold night – it is sweet enough for those dark days without taking it too far. While an ESB in style it has just enough call to that sour base of a good bitter to make it work.
“Huh”, so, it is actually pretty solid, not stand out or shiny, but blends two very different interpretations into one beer. Very recognisably an ESB, but with just enough of its own style. A solid experience.
Background: Another beer from the Christmas present batch from my family. Many thanks. This, a bunch of bottled ales from Norfolk. I have no idea why this is called “On The Huh”, but since I tend to use “Huh” a lot in my notes in seemed appropriate. Huh.