It’s been awhile since I’ve reviewed an English beer as I have a preference for many German beers. None-the-less an everyday drinker can’t stop with German brews, so here we go!
Wychcraft offers up much in terms of taste, color and satisfaction. Wychwood makes some fancy style bottles to go along with their total UK stylishness. If you’re into lighter style summer brews you’ll definitely want to pay attention.
Initially the beer poured gold with a tall white head which slowly receded down to a moderate ring of foam. The scent definitely reflects the hoppy nature of the beverage with complex aromas on the lighter side of beers (also only containing 3.8% ABV). The beer had less carbonation than I originally thought it would, based on the fact that it foamed out of the bottle and onto my counter when I lifted off the cap.
Once poured you’ll notice it’s a cloudy gold color and offers only subtle carbonated bubbling. The bottle size, at 500ml bottle, is a bit bigger than I’m used to so I had more than in the bottle after the pour than I typically would. After smelling the aroma’s I let it rest in the mouth for a bit and felt a citrus/lime flavoring in the nasal passage with a bit of malts.
The aftertaste, like many British beers, was a potent bite with woody notes of fuggles ringing on the tongue. The English Fuggle hop is very easy to identify on my pallet and noticed it immediately. The unique fuggle taste wasn’t nearly as potent as the Shipyard Fuggles IPA, which is a bit too much Fuggle for my style; Wychcraft Blonde is much better balanced between the hops and the sweety malts but I’m not sure if I’d call it a Blonde. It does have a lighter bodied feel but its a bit more towards the medium-bitterness than a low bitter.
I’ll admit, initially I was a bit turned off by the bite. It’s not the beers fault I’ve not had an English ale in awhile, but it does hold a more bitterness than the beers I’ve been drinking of late. After half the bottle (which is a lot considering its 500ml size) I started to find the beer much lighter on the pallet and easier to sip. This is a beer I believe my father would enjoy because he’s into the complex English hop flavor and aromas.
Typically, a Blonde beer is supposed to be a great introductory beer for consumers moving from mass market brews to something more micro, however, I think this might be a bit complex for them. To me, this beer would be best fit for a beer drinker who respects the laws of flavor and wants to expand their horizons over the pond to England. Europeans may have a greater respect for this beer, but in the US where Pilsners rule (e.g. Budweiser and it’s ilk), this might be a bit too complex.