Tag Archive: Cream Ale


Deviant Dandy: Strange Brew Lawnmower Ale (England: Cream Ale: 5.4% ABV)

Visual: Hazy yellow. Some carbonation. Massive yellow white head.

Nose: Slight gritty bitterness. Wheat. Lime. Dried apricot.

Body: Moderate bitterness. Light gherkin. Lime. Peppery. Brown bread. Milky. Sour cream. Reasonably thick mouthfeel. Dried apricot.

Finish: Moderate hops and bitterness. Milky apricot. Gherkin. Kiwi. Lime. Sour cream and chives.

Conclusion: This has two main sides to it – a moderately thick, slightly yogurt like, milky ale. A gentle thing with moderate hop use. Actually feels like a beer to go with a curry , so to sooth its heat with its milky feel. Now I know the beer doesn’t have …casein … I think is the element in milk that allows it to dissolve the capsaicin that makes curry hot, so it won’t actually do that. It just feels that way – hope that gets across the feel of the beer.

Anyway, I digress – the other side of the beer is a slightly tart squeezed lime to sour gherkin set of notes – fresh and prickly. It feels like a rougher impression of the fresher tart flavours you get from NZ hops – just more thick, clingy and tingly. Around that unusual element you get some more standard apricot style hops, but delivered in a thicker, more cloying dried apricot in natural yogurt kind of way. In fact the whole yogurt imagery keeps coming back with this beer.

Strangely, while the notes are thick, it doesn’t make the beer heavy or intrusive as you would expect. The flavours are an odd mix of sweet, tart, savoury, and sour – yet together they feel fairly gentle and sippable. In fact going back to the early imagery, it feels like a mix of those sides you get at the start in an Indian restaurant – the heavier dip, the milky creamy soothing dip, the sour dip and the sweet mango chutney. All mixed together in one beer – and not as bad as that sounds.

Generally this is reasonable – odd but not really remarkable at the same time. Easy to drink, but also with some weight to it. The oddest thing is that for all its unsusual flavours, when you have swallowed it, the actual flavours vanish pretty quickly – you have to take another mouthful to keep it going. So a weak finish, but generally not bad.

An easy one to drink, enjoy while you are doing that, and then forget,.

Background: This one was a bit of a random pick. I liked the can design, the name Deviant Dandy, and I wanted something a bit more gentle than usual. So a cream ale seemed like a good pick – think I have only done notes on one cream ale before, and have barely drunk more than a a few anyway, so good to do something different. This was grabbed from Independent Spirit and drunk while listening to some of Extreme’s music on their youtube channel for a bit of glam rock fun.

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Mikkeller: Revelation Cat: Cream Ale (Denmark: Cream Ale: 5% ABV)

Visual: A hazy lemon coloured body with a just slightly yellowed hued head that gives somewhat the impression of a lemon meringue.  The lace leaving bubbled head is quite ridiculously massive on initial pour and stays that way for quite a while.

Nose:  Apricot, pineapple and jiff lemon. Slight white bread. Very fresh with a cinnamon touch.

Body:  Slight fizzy feel and evident bitterness. You get the feel of hops layered over a light lemon juice flavour. Apricot. Milky, or possibly more relevant to say creamy.

Finish: Lemon covered pancakes. Hops. A real long lasting dry bitterness. Milk (or yes, possibly cream again). Pineapple.

Conclusion: I’ve never had a cream ale before so I was really not sure what to expect on opening this.  Initial impressions as the cap popped off were quite positive. The aroma came in very fresh, all lemon hopped and energetic. Somewhat relieved I got my pen and paper to hand and progressed to the drink itself

I quickly realised the aroma had set the tone very well for the beer, though the word energetic should be replaced with solid bitter hoppiness. It is still fresh as a daisy and has a quite splendid hoppy finish.  The fresh citrus main body manages to be remarkably easy to drink as well, possibly due a slight sweet creaminess that I’m going to go out on a limb and guess is a standard point of the style.

There really isn’t much else to it, it’s simple yet brash.  Unfortunately its 5% abv is just a touch too high for the perfect session region that it would otherwise suit well. I’m guessing unless the hop finish grew too much over multiple bottles that it would have been a sorted session beer for flavour.
Still aside from that it’s a zesty little bottle of fun.  Makes me imagine that it was what Art Brews Lemon Beer was aiming for, except this one didn’t fail. (No offence to the otherwise quite rocking Art Brew beers) So it’s simple but fun. Will have to have a few more cream ales before I can work out quite the intent of the style though.

Background: I decided to pick this up at the Great British Beer Festival.  It’s Ratebeers highest rated example of the style, so having never tried a cream ale before it is either a great place to start, or a great way to make every cream ale afterwards looks crap. (Or maybe a great way to put me off the style if it turns out to be rubbish, possibly wrongly so).  So, no idea what to expect going in.  I don’t know much about Revelation Cat, but Mikkeller have been damn good so far.

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