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Posts Tagged ‘Chocolate’

Brewery –           Hook Norton

Beer –                   Diamond Reserve

ABV –                  6.0%

Origin –              Hook Norton, Oxfordshire

Style –                Strong Ale

Season –            Autumn

First a bit of background on this brew. Hook Norton originally brewed ‘Old Bill’ to celebrate the Silver Jubilee in 1977., which was then re-named Old Hooky and has been a mainstay at the Brewery to this day. In celebration of the Diamond Jubilee Hook Norton have taken ‘Old Hooky’ re-fined, beefed it up, and unleashed this 6.0% stunner on the nation. Yes 6.0% is in reference to the 60 years our glorious Monarch has sat on the throne.

As you can tell there’s plenty of heritage in this ale and it certainly looks the part; Regal, Majestic, with a beautiful high cream crown atop. Ruby Red in appearance, thick and luxurious.

Chocolate notes welcome you, but there’s also a decent hoppy aroma which gives it a well-balanced yet robust nose.

The first mouthful hits you like a sledgehammer. Full bodied and robust, bursting with more  milk chocolate notes, festooned with ripe cherries, and a tart pluminess  giving sharpness to its otherwise silky creamy mouthfeel.

The sweetness develops on the tongue along with a warming alcohol flavour that clings to the mouth.

There is a slight bitterness on the finish but this just keeps the sweetness in check. 

This reminds me of Fullers ESB but the flavours are deeper and more pronounced.

A thoroughly British ale, made in the heart of the English countryside, full and flavoursome.

Perfect with strong meats such as Venison, Duck, or game, and a nice brandy to follow.  

 

 

 

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Brewery –          Blakemere Brewery

Beer –                  Two Tone Special Chocolate Stout

Alcohol –          5.0%

Origin –               Northwich, Cheshire

Style –                 Stout

Season –            Autumn

A work mate, visited the brewery over the weekend and as he’s not the biggest fan of Chocolate Stouts he thought he’d kindly get me a bottle and see what a thought.

I’m a big fan oF Chocolate stouts, as I think Stouts should be thick, heavy, and flavoursome; satisfying to the core.

Two Tone has a thick  black, oil slick colouring, with a light brown soft head.

Most chocolate stouts have a dark chocolate nose, but brew tastes lighter, with milk chocolate notes, with hints of hazelnut, and malty biscuit.

Initially, Coffee flavours develop on the tongue, but it’s a light cappuccino style which leads to a developing bitterness from the Dark Chocolate backbone. Earthy, and leathery notes add to the bitterness giving this a dark, rough, original feel.

The finish is bitter, with more dark chocolate, and cocoa, with a slight tangy mouthfeel on the sides of the tongue.

I think ‘Two Tone is an apt name for this brew; lighter milk chocolate notes lead deeper and deeper towards dark chocolate, with a solid full cocoa finish. It tastes like a micro-brewery beer, not refined and elegant, but rough and ready, home-made, and these are qualities which I admire in a beer.

Thumbs up to Northern Brewing, a chocolate lovers delight.

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Hawkshead – Red

Brewery –          Hawkshead

Beer –                 Red

Alcohol –          4.4%

Origin –             Staveley, Cumbria

Style –               Copper Ale

Season –           Autumn

Simple Name but red is what it is… Not slightly red, or tinted, or chestnut red, but a real vibrant red. A beautiful looking ale with a soft off white head.

The nose is of autumnal red berries, with cherry notes, and a surprising amount of chocholate.  

A wonderfully earthy bitterness awaits, with further chocolate and cherry notes, with hints of a slight spiciness. Warm, satisfying, full flavoured, leading to a dark chocholate bitter finish.

Not one you could dirnk all night, due to its robust stong flavours, but a beer to savour, delight, and devour!

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Brewery –          Red Willow

Beer –                  Heartless (Chocolate Stout)

Alcohol –           4.9%

Origin –              Macclesfield, England

Style –               Chocolate Stout

Season –            Winter

WOW!

When I first saw this beer in the Pied-Bull in Chester, the bar man told me that this wold not be ‘as chocolatey as I expect’.

Clearly this guy had not tried the beer because it surpassed my expectations and then some.

Most ‘Chocolate Stouts’ have a solid coffee backbone but this was extremely smooth, a slight bitterness from the chocolate, but incredibly easy drinking.

Silky velvety black, with a tan head, it tastes like a chocolate fudge cake, with lashings of double cream,

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