Category: Beer and Whisky Map


Abbeydale: Wanderer West Coast IPA (England: IPA: 6.5% ABV)

Visual: Cloudy lemon juice at the edges to apricot skin main body colour. Thin, loose bubbled white head.

Nose: Lemon juice. Flour. Apples. Some prickly hop character and bitterness. Apricot.

Body: Peach. Good bitterness. Peach syrup. Apricot skin. Green feeling hop character. Slightly dry. Apples. Slightly resinous. Fudge.

Finish: Greenery. Good hop character and bitterness. Apples. Quite dry. Apricot skin. Slightly resinous. Kiwi. Crushed custard cream biscuits and a dry general custard touch.

Conclusion: I was surprised how cloudy this west coast style IPA was on the eye. Thankfully though there is no New England style IPA shenanigans going on here. It isn’t 100% in my preferred interpretation of of a west coast style, but it knows to make it bitter and kick a bit.

It is just slightly dry, not as much as you would expect from the style – there is a chewy fudge backing that shows the malt a bit more than usual, but still dry enough and it gives a base for a reasonably bitter and resinous character. Nothing too hardcore but, you know, bitter and resinous. That is what I am here for and they are doing the job right as long as they get that bit sorted, in my opinion anyway.

The bitter base is then a launch pad for a dry, apple character along with some dry apricot skin notes – a fruity but restrained experience. That said, there is a fruit syrup core to the whole thing that is sweeter and thicker than I would expect for the style, but despite that works pretty well here. It results in a sticky, fruity kind of hoppiness. Clinging but not so much that it gets harsh of dull.

While not a show stopper of an IPA this is a solid mix of bitterness, resinous character and fruitiness and does the job. It is just about dry enough for what I want, and gives a lot of flavour. Very solid indeed.

Background: Abbeydale used to be a brewery I knew for turning out more traditional ales. They seem to be experimenting a lot more these days. Their Wanderer series is bunch of different beers taking inspiration from things around the world – in this case the West Coast IPA which is a favoured style of mine. Single hopped with Citra, which is a classic of USA IPAs this was one I was hoping to enjoy a lot. Another one grabbed from Independent Spirit, I went back to the Animatrix album for backing music – I think I enjoyed the music from that even more than Animatrix itself.

Been a lot of action since I last updated this, about a year and a half ago. Mainly due to a few world trips. Expanded Canada heavily, little burst in and around Belgrade for the Eastern European beers, and a bit expanded in Sweden and surrounding Scandinavian beers. Still nearly nothing in France and Spain – I hear they have good scenes now – must try and grab a few of their beers some time.

I can’t believe how much the British scene is still exploding, an utter wealth of new Breweries – I keep expecting it to slow down, but no sign of that at the moment. After sticking with the well reputed, well known breweries a bit last time, I’ve been making an effort to try and break out and try new Breweries, and from more countries when possible. It is getting easier and easier to do so as well, lots of bottle shops with lots of choice, bars having good selection in.

We live in a great time to be a beer and whisky fan. In my opinion anyway, what do you think?

Until next time – Enjoy your drink!

So, just under a year ago I did a map of all the breweries and distilleries I had tried, and I’ve been updating it ever now and then. So, nearly a year on and…

Not as much has changed as I had expected

I’ve got a bit of the Czech Republic and Poland covered now, though they deserve a lot more attention. Poland especially. A tad more tried from Sweden, Denmark, etc, but not hugely so. Guess I’m slowly creeping around various parts of Europe.

I think it can probably be attributed to two things

1) The British beer scene boom – we have been getting vast numbers of new breweries in Britain, and with a couple of excellent bottle shops in reasonable distance to me it is very easy to try them. It wasn’t like we were lacking for breweries before, but we are getting a lot more experimentation going and different styles in recent years.

2) The availability of the big names – for brewers outside of Britain, it is easier than ever to get hold of beers, but we do seem to get just a lot of the big names. I’m not complaining, we are getting Mikkeller, Boston Beer Co, Stone, Cantillon, De Struise – all great names, and lots of great beers are being tried, just not adding much variety to the map. It really is first world problems. “Oh no, I’m only getting some of the really well reputed beer – woe is me.” Guess I am never quite so happy as when I’m hunting down the completely new to me.

Unfortunately the planned Germany run has fallen through for now, so I won’t be adding a nice chunk to Germany as hoped for, but I have other travel plans which may fill some of the blank space in the coming year. Oh yes.

Apart from that – well Scotland is getting even busier, between the aforementioned beer scene breakout, and my attempt to hunt down the distilleries I had yet to try, that place is covered with new markers.

All in all a good year, but not the most varied. The craft beer scene here seems to have found the breakout names, especially with foreign beers, and tend to stick with them. While the beer list for a pub can not be predicted easily, often what breweries will be there can. May have to do some hunting further afield in the coming year to see what else is out there.

Until then, enjoy your drink!

This has been a pet project for a while; I’ve always thought I’d picked up and reviewed drinks from a wide range of countries and decided to map these on google maps to see how widespread they actually were.

A lot less than I had thought, it is easy to forget just how big the world is, and more importantly, how tightly clustered the big beer and whisky countries are.

It did bring a few interesting points though.

1) I’ve not reviewed any Polish or Czech beers.

How the hell did this happen? I’ve got the Czech side already sorted and soon to upload, but I will have to grab some Polish beers to review and sharpish.

2) Exactly how clustered the beer scene is.

Seriously, most of the French breweries I’ve tried are on the border with Belgium, most of the Denmark big names I know are in spitting distance of each other, how much of the USA stuff I’ve seen is clinging to the west and east coast.

3) Exactly how packed Britain is.

Do we have anywhere not within ten miles of a Brewery, anywhere? I’ve reviewed but a small percentage of British Breweries beers and they litter the landscape.

4) Exactly how much Belgium beats us for that.

Belgium is tiny, and you cannot see it under the marker dots. I know the last two are probably biased by me being close, and the further away beers are harder to find, but it is still pretty impressive.

Anyway, It’s an interesting snapshot of my personal drinking world. If any beer and whisky bloggers reading this care to do the same it would be interesting to see how they compare. Our own little liquid world maps.

EDIT: A Note: Often the map location is approximate where google maps was dicking with me and wouldn’t let me use the exact. Please don’t use this as a navigation map. It is as accurate as I can sort, but some of these are probably way out for actually visiting.

%d bloggers like this: