Tag Archive: St Austell Brewery


moor-bath-ales-st-austell-dark-knight-weisse

Moor: Bath Ales: St Austell: Dark Knight Weisse (England: Dunkelweizen: 5.1% ABV)

Visual: Dark reddish brown. Large bubbled brown head.

Nose: Nutty and soft lemon mix. Tobacco. Wheaty. Malt chocolate. Slight cloying sour cream note.

Body: Malt chocolate. Vanilla toffee. Tobacco. Wheat. Moderate thickness of texture. Light coriander. Smoke. Light lemon and lime hop character.

Finish: Wheaty. Malt chocolate. Brown bread. Lightly nutty. Moderate bitterness and hop character. Smoke. Light lime hops.

Conclusion: This is definitely, well, darker that the usual Dunkel Weisse flavours. A standard dunkel weisse, to my mind, deals with the wheat and malt chocolate notes as a base – which admittedly this does – but I haven’t encountered one that brings this stodgy, smokey tobacco flavour to the middle like this does.

It has just mildly more hop character than you would normally get as well – not hugely so, just some more noticeable bitterness and some subtle citrus hop flavours under the bigger malt, tobacco and malt.

It is pretty pleasant – it has a good texture that is generally smooth but with a bit of a wheat grip. It cleaves close enough to the standard dunkel weisse style but pushes things just slightly towards a heavier experience. Pleasant, ya know?

Nothing in it pushes it to special – but it is a well done beer in a style variant I have not seen done before. I think this could be a good beer to go with beef dishes – it is not complex enough to be heavily examined by itself, but is strong flavoured enough to complement the meat I feel. That is a guess. I haven’t tried it with beef yet.

So, solid, smoked – not stand out great but no complaints.

Background: Hit Moor’s tap-house recently and very much enjoyed the beers there – so decided to grab this collaboration of theirs from Independent Spirit for more Moor beer tasting note goodness. This was back from before I had finished Dark Souls 2 and was hammering my head against the Frigid Outskirts area. Seriously, screw that area. Anyway, basically I needed a good beer is what I am saying. Drunk while listening to more of the epic goodness that is Two Steps From Hell.

st-austell-proper-black

St Austell: Proper Black (England: Black IPA: 6% ABV)

Visual: Black. Large browned creamy head. Still.

Nose: Milky coffee. Kiwi. Slight roasted air. Slight bitter chocolate. Key lime pie.

Body: Slight sour dough. Prickly hops. Key lime. Milky chocolate. Slight liquorice notes. Creamy. Chocolate liqueur.

Finish: Cocoa dust. Moderate bitterness. Light charring. Slight liquorice. Slight sour dough and milky coffee.

Conclusion: Ya know, I mentioned during my notes on “It’s All Propaganda” that it didn’t feel like a black IPA, despite being a good beer. This has similar issues with not feeling like the style, but in a different way. The base has the smoothness and feel of BIPA down pat, which is where IAP failed – it has the base coffee and chocolate, with slightly roasted bitterness in as well. Those base flavours are present but not dominating, leaving room for the hops to do their work. So it succeeds at that where IAP had its issues.

Unfortunately this beer, unlike IAP, doesn’t do enough with the hops to fill that space. It has the bitterness, but ends up feeling like a hoppier or more roasted stout. It doesn’t take full advantage of the flavour possibilities of a Black IPA. There are some green fruit notes, but far less than it deserves.

So, as a beer it is not bad – in fact if this was pitched as a hoppy stout I would probably find it pretty decent – so let’s look at it as that and ignore the whole Black IPA thing.

As that it has a solid chocolate base, subtly enhanced by a few green fruit notes that round it out and a slightly higher hop character than normal. Despite fairly heavy flavour and a 6% abv it is pretty easy to drink – albeit with a hop level that builds up over time.

It is a solid, fairly stout like, beer. The extra hops add some nice flavour, but not enough to make it special. I feel the need to damn it with faint praise, but every time I try it ends up sounding so bloody hipster. “A good try for a mainstream brewery” kind of thing. Bleh. Solid, no real bad points, but in doing so it takes no risks that would let it soar.

Background: Man, I haven’t done notes on St Austell beers for years – not since back when I relied on my cheap main camera and crappy phone camera. Now I have a far better camera, and the same lack of skill at using it. Anyway, this was part of a set of beer given to me as a Christmas present by a work colleague. Many thanks! Drunk while listening to History Of Guns: Mirror Pond – they used to have it up for free download, but I can’t find a link at the moment. Pity – they do lovely, unusual electronic meets gloom meets guitar work.

St. Austell Tribute Cornish Ale (England: Bitter: 4.2% ABV)

Visual: Hazy amber. Light coloured medium bubbled head. Light shines through the body in a pleasing fashion.

Nose: Light lemon, citrus and hops.

Body: Medium hops and bitterness. Again that hint of citrus. Slight lucozade glucose drink touches.

Finish: Dry hops and burnt wood. The centre grows with a sweet note and orange notes which rise out later.

Conclusion: A slow burner of a beer. Initially deeply unimpressive – a standard beer that checks the boxes but without distinction. However as it goes on the finish grows to be above average and a nice haze to the middle body of the beer. It has a nice sweetness to its middle which rounds it out well. Overall it was an enjoyable beer, but does not match its claims of being“premium” ale.

St Austell Brewery Admirals Ale (England: Premium Bitter: 5% ABV)

Visual: light brown head, burgundy brown body, just slightly cloudy.

Nose; Sweet, slight caramel, hops

Body: Rich and sweet, malt loaf and butter, slight sherbet fizz

Finish: Pleasantly moist, quite short, lingering freshness

Conclusion: A fine sipping ale, and bottle conditioned as it is it may benefit from a few years in the cellar. Very rich and moorish. Not excessively complex but a fine ale for a hearty gathering and some red meat and mushroom dishes

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