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Fantastic Beers & Where to Find Them (part 1)

craft beers northamptonshire

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Fantastic Beers & Where to Find Them (part 1)

Beers and ales are now firmly back within the wheelhouse of the conscientious drinker. The rise of craft beer has seen a shift in the way people consume booze.

No longer satisfied with the same widely produced choices that have been mass marketed to them for the last few decades, people are looking for choice, variety and creative and innovative flavours. It’s not too much to ask, now is it?

In some quarters craft beer is given the ‘pretentious’ tag, but the very simple fact is craft beer tastes better because the brewers spend time focusing on the nuances of flavour and quality as opposed to focusing resources on marketing and the folly’s that any large corporation must contend with.

Camden Hells Lager – 4.6%

Aroma: Malty, grainy, very light.
Appearance: Classic golden colour
Taste: Light sweet, light malty, light grainy.

camden hells craft beerCommonly found in chain pubs and independent venues all over Northamptonshire, most notably the O’Neill’s chain pub, this lager is similar to the classic lagers commonly seen on tap and is made for the drinker looking for something a little different.

Hells provides a soft fruity flavour, pouring with a golden amber colour and a frothy head.

The flavour showcases elements of lemon grass, biscuit with a malty finish. However, as the beer warms up it begins to take on a different quality; bringing the sweet, soft, lemony hops to the fore.

Overall Hells provides a wide variety of flavours, which produce a lovely mixture of tastes and smells and is definitely worth taking a punt on if, like me, you’re tired of the same old lager and you’re looking for something easy to drink over an extended period.

Kona Big Wave – 4.4%

Aroma: Honey, subtle fruity tones.
Appearance: Bright golden colour with a silky white head.
Taste: Light citrus with floral undertones.

kona big wave craft beerBig Wave is brewed in Hawaii and designed as a cooling refreshment after a heavy session on the waves, but waves are hard to come by in Northamptonshire so we’ll have to settle for the Princess Alexandra.

Big Wave is a light golden ale with subtle tones of fruit and a delicate hop scent. Another smooth, refreshing drink that is easy to consume at pace.

Big Wave is synonymous for its bright golden colour topped with a pearly, white head which slowly dissolves and leaves a foamy layer on the surface – which is where the name derives…probably.

This is an ale found only in the pubs and bars that give a hoot about good authentic tasting booze.

Hopping Hog IPA – 5.4%

Hopping-Hog-IPA-webAroma: Sweet, grassy, light caramel tones.

Appearance: Reddish, brown with tanned foam.

Taste: Sweet with high tones of lemon and hops.

Hopping Hog is following the path originally blazed by the Punk IPA’s – featuring not only in the bohemian bars and pubs, but also, quite notably in chain bars commonly found county wide; Weatherspoon’s being a particularly good example.

This American style IPA is packed with flavour and showcases a deep ruby colour with a grassy foam topping, possessing distinct aromas of hops, sweet tea and a light dab of caramel.

Overall, it’s not a traditional IPA, it’s much lighter than Greene King or similar brands. If you see the trademark emerald green labels, then it’s well worth giving it a go.

Studies have revealed that breweries in the UK have grown by 8% in the last twelve months alone; the craft beer hype seems like much more than a fad so drink up!

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