Tag Archives: World beers

Estrella Galicia

Estrella Galicia

Estrella Galicia 

https://estrellagalicia.es/

Brewed by Hijos De Rivera
Style: Pale Lager 
A Coruña, Galicia, Spain

Estrella GaliciaIn the year of 1906 a Mr. José María Rivera Corral, who had just returned from his trip to Mexico and full of enthusiasm and bright ideas, decided to start his own brewery in the city of La Coruña, in the North West of Spain and called it the ” La Estrella de Galicia” factory whose main products would be beers and soft drinks.

Today José María Rivera, is company president. What? No not the original, he aint that fecking old, but its his great grandson and namesake, showing that for over 100 years the company has remained in family hands. 

In the 90’s the company diversified and expanded into new markets such as for mineral water, juices, ciders and vinegars. But the main brand of the brewery is Estrella Galicia, a 5.5% abv pale lager brewed since the beginning of the brewery, and a brand that is found all over Spain and also exported to the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Portugal, Brazil, Mexico and the United States, amongst others.

Review: 33cl Bottle of Estrella Galicia : ABV: 5.5%

Estrella GaliciaCame in a nicely looking brown bottle with the Estrella Galicia logo standing out. 

On pour I got a big fluffy white head and a golden coloured beer. Head does maintain well, but there is a lot of carbonation and feck me there isn’t much left to come out of the bottles, a lot of it evaporated!!!

Get a faint lagery, yeasty and malty smell, very malty smell in fact but it is ok.

Not a bad first impression, a nice light bodied taste on mouthful, easy to chug, not bad. Light, no bitter tastes.
Corn taste to it as well.

Estrella GaliciaSmooth and crisp, very smooth.

Smooth, no great standout tastes. or complex flavours, but its a regular lager so dont expect too much. Light in the mouth. Overall not bad, solid.

Lager taste. Barley malts. Light and smooth. Nice mouthfuls. Good session beer, pleasant and easy enough to drink, I liked it overall.

Ok, not bad, and can imagine it would be a good accompaniment to some tapas on a hot Spanish day. 

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Insel-Brauerei Baltic Ale

Insel-Brauerei Baltic Ale

Insel-Brauerei Baltic Ale

https://www.insel-brauerei.de/

Brewed by Rügener Insel-Brauerei GmbH 
Style: Strong Ale
Rambin auf Rügen, Germany

Insel-Brauerei Baltic AleThe Rügen Island Brewery is a Craft Beer Brewery in Rambin on the island of Ruegen, the biggest island of Germany (in itself not that big, only 926.4 km² big).  Surrounded on most sides by the Baltic sea, the area is characterized by diverse shore line landscapes with many lagoons, beaches and and white chalk cliffs. The brewery is unique in that it is smack bang in the middle of nowhere, at one with nature right in the heart of the island. But it is a new tourist attraction to this wild area, as it offers visitors a guided tour of its magnificent modern brewery, has a beer garden for beer tasting, and store to buy their extensive collection. 

Founded in 2014 by Markus Berberich, who formerly worked as Managing Director at the Störtebeker Braumanufaktur in Stralsund.  These contacts and his twenty year experience in the beer industry helped him no end in setting up his own brewery in the picturesque island. 

The brewery produces a variety of different beers which, unlike most breweries, are brewed not in steel tanks, but in open fermentations, and always using natural hops. In addition, the company relies on bottle fermentation. The bottles are wrapped in paper to protect the beer from lightning, and cause it also looks cool (or at least that’s what I think!). Its most popular beers are the Island chalk (champagne ale), its Sea Maiden (Sauerbier) and the one I reviewed, the Baltic Ale. In 2016 the brewery won in the World Beer Awards for its IPA, voted the best in the world, which goes to show how good these beers really are!

Review: 0,33l Bottle of Insel-Brauerei Baltic Ale: ABV: 7.5%

Insel-Brauerei Baltic AleBottle comes in a very nice well wrapped light brown paper with a nice picture of an eagle on it. caught the eye and that’s why I bought it as it looks well cool. Also explains on the package how the beer won gold in the London 2016 World Beer Award for the category of “beste deutsche brauereri” (Best German Brewery)

As for “Baltic Ale”, I could be wrong but I am assuming it is regular ale that is developed with a Russian/Baltic tinge? Stronger than normal. But it could also be because the brewery is near the Baltic sea! 

On pour, fuck me a shit lot of carbonation, well carbonated. Calm down big boy!

But thankfully its all ok as it leaves a nice golden coloured beer that has a nice sized frothy head, and lots of good lacing.

Colour does get a bit cloudy and hazy after a while, but overall it is a decent looker.

Insel-Brauerei Baltic AleDidn’t get much of a smell, pretty faint but was yeast, fruits and coriander.

Lovely initial taste. GORGEOUS in fact!

A light wheat beer taste for me. Smooth enough. Nice relaxing beer, got the yeast, the hops, the citrus.

Lovely smooth beer. Nice beer to relax on a Friday after a hard long week.

Really good. Aftertaste is sweetish. Excellent! Lots of well balanced flavours

Hops not too discerning and manageable, low bitterness. Alcohol well hidden, pleasant to drink.

Liked it, and am very interested in trying out some of their other brews………Recommended. 

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Sagres Cerveja 

Sagres Cerveja

Sagres Cerveja 

http://www.sagres.pt/

Brewed by Sociedade Central de Cervejas e Bebidas, S.A (Heineken Group)
Style: Pale Lager
Vialonga, Portugal

In 1855 a brewer called Jansen Ceverjas started making beer in Lisbon. In the decades that followed, brewers cooperated together and by 1934, the biggest four brewers merged into a collective called Central de Cervejas. In 2008, Central de Cervejas was purchased by the Heineken Group.

The Sagres brewery is located in Vialonga, near Lisbon.

Sagres Cerveja The SCC (Sociedade Central de Cervejas) produce a wide range of beers, mainly pale lagers, but they also produce a dark Munich called Sagres Preta, which has won many international awards, a Sagres Bohemia an auburn beer with an abv of 6.2%, and a Sagres Radler. Its not only beer too, they also produce soft drinks and bottled water. 

Sagres Beer is one of the most popular beers in Portugal and is produced and shipped to countries all around the world, and particularly wherever there is a large Portuguese community. The beer has won many international awards, including the World Beer Competition (in Belgium way back in 1958!) and one that caught my eye on their webpage……”Reader’s Digest Trusted Brand award in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015″. Well that’s some achievement, wow well done Sagres!

The beer has a long-term sponsorship deal with the Liga Portuguesa Futebol, the highest level of professional football in Portugal. As a result, the league is officially called Liga ZON Sagres. Sagres are also official sponsor of the Portugal national team since 1993.

Review: 25cl Can of Sagres Cerveja: ABV: 5%

I do really like the brown bottle and the Sagres logo, its nice and colourful and stands out. 

Sagres Cerveja On appearance it had a dark golden colour, with a nice big sized white head that maintained very well. Some lacing. Some carbonation, fizzing away 

Faint smell but nice, malty, grainy, slightly metallic, but its ok, albeit very faint.

Light to drink, very smooth, not a whole lot of tastes or flavours, but does the business.

Light malts.Light lager. Bit corny.

Drinkable, good considering it is cheap pish from Aldi. Not bad to pass the time, though can’t feel the alcohol or any real taste, but overall it wasn’t bad. I did enjoy them, and look forward to the day when I can try them out on draught on a beach in sunny Portugal. Some day, not in the far off distant future,hopefully….

Anyway cheap lager from Aldi. Nothing to blow your mind, but nice on a hot day to enjoy with some cheap beer

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BrewDog 5 A.M. Saint

BrewDog 5 A.M. Saint

BrewDog 5 A.M. Saint

https://www.brewdog.com/item/6/BrewDog/5AM-Saint.html

Brewed by BrewDog
Style: American red ale/Amber Ale
Ellon, Aberdeenshire, Scotland

Brewdog. The whipper snappers from Scotland that have set the craft beer world alight. Started in April 2007 by two good friends James Watt and Martin Dickie, BrewDog is a British multinational brewery and pub chain based in Ellon, Scotland.

Bored with the usual industrial brewed lagers and stuffy ales all around them, they decided to start brewing their own beers catering to their own tastes. Sure why not. Both only 24 at the time, they leased a building in Fraserburgh, got a bank loan and started producing some pretty strong but exciting brews. 

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintStarting small, they brewed very tiny batches, filled bottles by hand and sold their beers at local markets and out of the back of their beat up old Skoda pickup.

By 2008 they got more money from the bank which was used to further invest in the beers with a bottling machine and more tanks purchased. They then went straight for the kill by producing a particularly strong beer, “Tokyo”, with 18.2% alcohol, which unsurprisingly created a shit storm in the media and in the drinks industry. The Portman Group, the trade group body responsible for drinks producers in the UK and for regulating the industry, banned a lot of their initial beers, but they could still export to Sweden, Japan and America.  As you can imagine all this hoo-ha resulted in increased sales and massive public exposure for the new Brewery.

In 2009 their Punk Indian Pale Ale was popular on the craft beer scene not just in the UK but also in Scandinavia, and getting major supermarket chain Tesco to stock it was a great coup for the young company at the time. They also created the Tactical Nuclear Penguin with a 32% alcohol content which at that time was the strongest beer in the world but it was their share issue that really caught the headlines. Offering people an opportunity to buy into the company via online, with 1300 initially investing in their share venture, later to become over 10,000! This and their various other crowd funding platforms have made the company very wealthy indeed. 

In 2010, BrewDog opened their first bar, in nearby Aberdeen. More bars followed in Scotland and in England and eventually to include establishments in Stockholm, São Paulo, Florence, Gothenburg, Helsinki, Tokyo . It was also in 2010 that their signature beer Hardcore IPA got the gold medal at the World Beer Cup in the Imperial IPA category which was some achievement for a very young brewery not long in operation.

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintIt was also along this time that they had a running battle with a German brewery, Schorschbräu, to see who could come up with the strongest beer in the world. Brewdog produced Sink the Bismark ,a beer with 41%  alcohol to take the crown of the worlds strongest beer, from Schorschbräu, who had produced a 40% ABV version of their Schorschbock.

Not long after they produced arguably their most controversial brew The End of History, a 55% abv Belgian ale, which was to be stronger than most whiskies, vodkas and gins. The name was a reference to Francis Fukuyama and his long since discredited book “The End of History. Was this to be the end of beer as we know it? Only 11 of the beers were for sale, and the beer came packaged inside a small stuffed animal, seven stoats, four grey squirrels, and costing between £500 and £700 each, not a beer then for the ordinary skin down the pub. Naturally animal rights groups were up in arms, but the stunt did the intended trick, getting the brewery unlimited coverage in the national press. To be fair to the boys, the animals were roadkill so I dont necessarily feel the outrage there, but I do think it was well naff and corny as a publicity stunt, a really cheap gimmick.   

Here was their promotional gibberish highlighting the beer as a “an audacious blend of eccentricity, artistry and rebellion”, and that the distinctive bottles were “disrupting conventions and breaking taboos – just like the beer they hold within them”. Really, what cunts talk like that, eh? LOL

But this is their style. Among other stunts they have pulled include driving a tank down Camden High Street, brewing beer at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean as you do, projecting the naked images of its two founders onto the Houses of Parliament; dropping stuffed cats from a helicopter onto the City of London;  and especially for the royal wedding of 2011 of William and kate they produced a beer called “Royal Virility Performance” ,a beer containing natural aphrodisiacs such as “herbal Viagra”, chocolate and horny goat weed, or so they said!

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintToday Brewdog is an internationally recognized beer brand, while also winning a tonne of awards and prizes for their beers. They produce roughly over 65 different beers shipping to over 55 countries worldwide,producing bottled and canned beers in a variety of styles such as ale, stout, India pale ale (IPA) and lager, some of which are also available in keg containers.
The bottled beers are distributed to British supermarkets and exported worldwide.

Its really hard to know what to think of Brewdog. They call themselves and their operation postpunk and that they are redefining what it means to drink beer, “to revolutionize the British beer industry, and redefine British beer-drinking culture”, etc etc, but they dont half talk a lot of pretentious hipster wank. Easy known that one of the guys father was in the oil industry. Common working class fellas they are not. But I guess Punk itself, apart from the Sex Pistols, was also a bit too middle class to be really as edgy as they’d like to portray. Give me heavy metal any day of the week!

Also a lot of their stunts are very silly and juvenile, and might appeal to people who live sheltered lives but its not classic or cool. A bit like Ryanair or Paddypower in their advertising, trying too hard to be cool, yet their product is still shite! For example this is from one of their advertising slogans on a beer “let the sharp bitter finish rip you straight to the tits” That’s childish stuff. I mean Scotland produced Robbie Louis Stevenson, Arthur Conan Doyle, and Robbie burns for fucks sake, so try better than that. 

This is how they describe themselves so you be the judge. They call themselves a “post-punk, apocalyptic, motherfucker of a craft brewery” and rallying it s supporters, “This is the revolution – so help me Dog,” and “Changing the world, one glass at a time.”  “We bleed craft beer,” “We blow shit up, and “Without us, we are nothing. We are BrewDog.” Yeah, that’s great, now can you give me a fucking pint please love!

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintWas in there BrewDog bar in Manchester, and although the draught beer was good, the place was a kip. Fuck me, it was all over the place, was like an office, people talking and acting like dickheads, with angry staff and modern decor that didn’t really work. You know its a shit bar when you see people playing fucking snakes and ladders, that’s giving up for fucks sake! But let me put my disclaimer out there, I’m not hip enough for these kind of places.

But hell they are popular, they have their own TV show called Brew Dogs in the States, and they are opening bars all over the place and producing new beers all the time, exporting to 50 countries or more, so what do i know then, eh?

I have to be fair to them though, there beers certainly seem exciting using a wide array of mad and exotic ingredients from chilli, honey, chocolate, hemp, and mustard to name but a few. They also do know their stuff, winning many numerous beer awards for their produce. If they just kept to the beers and enough with the other shite, please! 

Review: 330ml Bottle of BrewDog 5 A.M. Saint: ABV: 5%

This is what is said in their description of this beer

“5am Saint is The Holy Grail of red ales. At BrewDog we are on a mission to open as many people’s eyes as possible. Cast away any aspersions and let the crook of BrewDog be your guide in a whirlwind of conformity and mediocrity. Once this ruby liquid forms a foamy halo around your glass, you’ll never want to look back”

That’s a load of bollix, isn’t it!! 

Anyway 5AM Saint is the five malts and hops used to produce a beer at 5% ABV, and can be drank at 5.am to start the day off.  In the hops Nelson Sauvin, Simcoe, Cascade, Centennial and Ahtanum were used. The malt, Maris otter, Caramalt, Munich malt, Crystal and Dark Crystal Malt.

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintComes in a typical BrewDog design. The label decked out in a strong red, with usual style of distinctive lettering and logo. I do like their labels and bottle layout, its eye catching and colourful. 

On pour got a nice big decent sized frothy head, pouring a deep ruby reddish coloured beer, dark red/purple, Not much carbonation, very slight amount. Head dies a little but maintains throughout which is good. Some good lacing present.  Looks ok, nothing special.

Loved the smell, a really nice aroma. Got a hint of fruit…..grapefruits and blackberries. Lovely,, lovely smell. Malty and fruity aromas but not overpowering, just right.

So what about the taste, any good?

Well certainly very hoppy and strong in taste, a lot of flavours on the old taste buds, but nothing that would be extraordinary 

BrewDog 5 A.M. SaintVery typical of the craft beer style beers, overloaded with hops. Also got a lot of the sweet malts. 

Can taste the fruits, grapefruits and berries 

Is a slow burner and was slowly getting to appreciate it in the end. It certainly is a very tasty beer and its ok if this is your kind of thing, but I like my traditional red ales, and I do drink them a lot when I’m home in the old country, but this is no where that level. Also nothing to compete with Sierra Nevada efforts. A tad bit disappointing truth be told considering how much hype surrounds their beers. 

A bit of a dry bitter finish to the beer. Definitely wasn’t sessionable for me. Ok, if you like this sort of shite, I don’t!! Truth be told it is very bland and nothing new or exciting.

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St. George Beer from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

St. George Beer from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

St. George Beer 

http://www.addismap.com/bgi-ethiopia

Brewed by BGI Ethiopia PLC (Industry) 
Style: Pale Lager
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

St. George Beer from Addis Ababa, EthiopiaA beer from Ethiopia??? Yeah you bet ya I’d like to try that. Apparently Ethiopia has a thriving beer industry. Well you learn something new everyday, eh!?

St. George Beer is the most popular and oldest beer in Ethiopia. Founded in 1922, it is brewed by BGI Ethiopia in Addis Ababa, St. George is named after the patron saint of Ethiopia, a patron saint it so happens to share with England and which underlies the country’s deep Christian past.

The founder of St. George Brewery was a Belgian called Mussie Dawit, who later sold it to a German company. At the beginning, the factory used basic raw materials like barley and hops all imported from Europe, and the management staff of the factory and the leading technicians who controlled the brewery’s activities were all foreigners. Eventually, however, an Ethiopian company took over the brewery in 1952. This company was said to have been organized as a share holding entity, the larger share of which was owned by Emperor Haile Selassie, the Rastafari messiah and big time leader of Ethiopia. 

Over time the brewery grew and grew and became increasingly popular in the country, with the locals proud to drink an Ethiopian beer and not some import from afar. The factory is now owned by BGI, an internationally acclaimed Brewing Company that exports to Europe and to North America. 

Review: 33cl bottle of St. George Beer: ABV: 4.7%

St. George Beer from Addis Ababa, EthiopiaThe beer has an interesting cover on its bottle. We get to see a medieval type knight slaying a dragon. Well of course that knight is St George, the geezer that slayed that big old dragon back in the day and I think might also have something to do with the Knights Templar (See my article on St Georges day). Plus there is funny looking writing on the label which I’m led to believe is the Amharic language, the ancient language of Ethiopia. Overall it is a nice stand out distinct design and in a lovely looking brown bottle. 

On appearance we get a nice golden colour and a nice big head on the pour. A lot of nice carbonation going on. Overall it looks a good beer, very clear and a decent head but colour and head both fade a little and there is no lacing. 

St. George Beer from Addis Ababa, EthiopiaAroma is faint but I got a sweet malty smell and some barely, bit tinty and lagery as well. 

Taste: Has an off taste, initial taste of cardboard? Not nice at all, like unprocessed straw. Not nice at all.  Very sweet grain flavours and sweet malted barely tastes. 

Second pint, slightly better but still not great to be honest, very sweet, too much so, and very corny.  Not a session beer for sure, or for anything to be fair. 

I so wanted this to be a good beer. but I guess its a long way to Ethiopia, and I’m sure it tastes better under an African sun…………… 

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an excellent Eco-friendly beer

Höss Allgauer Ökobier, an excellent Eco-friendly beer.

Höss Allgauer Ökobier Helles Export

https://www.hirschbraeu.de/allgaeuer-oekobier/

Brewed by Privatbrauerei Höss der Hirschbräu
Style: Helles
Sonthofen, Bavaria, Germany

Allgäuer Ökobier  which translates as Alpine Environmental Beer, is a German beer brewed by the privately owned brewery of Hirschbräu, Bavaria, situated in the Alps and belonging to the Höss family.

an excellent Eco-friendly beerThe brewery was founded way back in 1657 when Hans Pope was awarded a “Bräustätt” (“brewing law”) for 30 guilders and set about to brew his beer. In 1859 Josef Anton Höss buys the brewery and since then, the Hirschbrauerei in Sonthofen has been owned by the Höss family.

The brewery has won in the World Beer Cup, in 2012 for its “Double Deer”, and in 2014 for its “Hirsch Gold”, so clearly the brewery knows what it is doing. It also exports to over 20 countries all around the world.  

Of course, this beer is brewed in accordance with the “Bavarian Reinheitsgebot” of 1516, which states that beer can be brewed only from water, malt and hops. But on this occasion as a special Eco friendly beer, it is with the purest Allgaeuer water, the best hops from organic farming and, of course, organic malts from ecologically controlled cultivation!

Review: 0.5l Bottle of Höss Allgauer Ökobier Helles Export: ABV: 5.2%

Comes in a lovely looking brown bottle with a fliptop and a nice looking picture of a barley farmer at the harvest in front of some Bavarian scenery. It has the certified BIO sign signifying its eco friendliness and shows that all its products are produced and grown without any chemical fertilizers. Ökobier standing for Eco Beer!

an excellent Eco-friendly beerHad a nice frothy head and a golden yellow colour. Very clean and clear, looks great.

Has a nice lagery smell, faint on the nose but got malts, grains and fruit

Nice taste, was very smooth. Liked it a lot. Got a nice wheaty malt taste.

Not much aftertaste, goes down pretty smooth. Light malts, and the barely all noticed, and all well balanced. 

Also nice from the few swigs I took from the bottle, very pleasant. 

Thinned taste of barely perfect, just in the background.

Perfect for a session, a good light drinkable beer, nothing amazing but does the job on a hot day.

A really excellent light tasting beer and I strongly recommended anyone to check it out. 

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Coop Prix Garantie Lager Bier

Coop Prix Garantie Lager Bier

Coop Prix Garantie Lager Bier

http://www.coop.ch/de/labels/prix-garantie.htm

Brewed by Heineken Switzerland
Style: Pale Lager
Chur, Switzerland

Coop Cooperative is one of Switzerland’s largest retail and wholesale companies. Headquartered in Basel, it is structured in the form of a cooperative society with around 2.5 million members.

Coop Prix Garantie Lager BierPretty much everywhere in Switzerland you will find a Coop (or its rival Migros), albeit at least in North Switzerland. 

Coop has a low-cost product line, “Prix garantie”which has a “guaranteed” low price for certain foods, drinks and products . Actually I say “low price”, silly me as this is Switzerland, I actually mean the least expensive products on offer!! This isn’t Iceland or Morrison’s in the evening, no last minute bargain basin shopping here!! So they have decided to extend this scheme to cheap discounted beer, Coop Lager.

But before you get too excited, apparently in a recent study, Coop tops the list of Swiss beers with glyphosate, a pesticide considered by the World Health Organization to be “probably” carcinogenic. But dont panic, for it to be anyway toxic you would have to drink about 1000 litres of Coop beer per day. In fact if you drink that much the last thing I’d be worried about is glyphosate!! 

Review: 50cl Can of Coop Prix Garantie Lager Bier: ABV: 4.8%

Can also be known as The Coop Lager! 

On pour I get a pretty nice clear golden yellow colour and nice frothy head. It settles well and looks pretty fantastic truth be told. Is this really a cheap supermarket brand, what the hell!!!

Coop Prix Garantie Lager BierBit of carbonation, bubbling away nicely
A lovely head that maintains, has good lacing, nice lively carbo, fizzing away, heh this looks good!!

Has a nice lagery smell, very nice on the nose.  Detected corn and some malts.

The taste is surprisingly not bad at all, all things considering, albeit  it has a slight sour taste
Very strong flavour and sweet to drink with a bitter aftertaste, but for the price it is ok, Can taste corn and starchy pale malts. 

When you factor in the cost, Coop lager is not bad. Coming at you for about 50 Swiss cents a can, I will drink to that, cheers.  Could argue that its better value than its parent company’s main brew (Heineken), which from what I can remember of the top of my head is roughly 2 Francs per can.

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Anker Lager Beer

Anker Lager Beer 

https://www.coopathome.ch/en/Anker/Anker-Lager-Beer-24x50cl/p/3458809

Brewed by Feldschlösschen
Style: Pale Lager
Rheinfelden, Switzerland

Anker, a Swiss beer, another cheap beer that the Migros Supermarket sells. Brewed by Swiss beer giants Feldschlösschenin in their brewery in Rheinfelden, not far from Basel. 

Review: 50cl Can of Anker Lager Beer: ABV: 4.8%

As there are a few discount supermarket beers in Switzerland…….Coop Lager, and Tell to name just two, Feldschlösschen have decided to get a leg in on this market with their own offering, Anker, available in Coop at a cheap price.  

Colour is very light yellow, very bubbly with a good bit of carbo resulting in a decent sized frothy white head. Perfect lacing, and a lot of it to boot. Looks good, this looks promising!

Smell, none! Or very light, of a lagery aroma, disappointing. 

It is tasteless really.

Had it cold. Yes it is easy to quench and very smooth but I couldn’t for the life of me find any taste from it at all. Basically it was just cold water. Very light body and no flavours, weak malts, 

Smooth but ok. Much better cheap beers out there………this is dull and boring.  Ah well, least I didn’t spend much on it!

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La Blonde de Ch’Nord

La Blonde de Ch’Nord

http://brasseurs-gayant.com/

Brewed by Les Brasseurs De Gayant 
Style: Bière de Garde/strong pale ale 
Douai, France

La Blonde de Ch’NordLa Blonde de Ch’Nord is brewed in Douai, a small city in the north of France by the Gayant Brewers.

Not my first time reviewing a brew from Les Brasseurs De Gayant boys. Reviewed their La Goudale Biere an ale which I did find ok, albeit it was the second can that swung it!

The brewery have many other brands such as Amadeus, Tequieros, La bière du Démon, St Landelin but their main product is La Goudale, its blonde beer

Review: large 75cl bottle of La Blonde de Ch’Nord: ABV: 7.2% 

La Blonde de Ch’NordA Bière de Garde (“beer for keeping”) is a strong pale ale traditionally brewed in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region in the North east of France.  Originally brewed in farmhouses during the winter and spring, to avoid unpredictable problems, these beers are of a golden colour, and as the name suggests the beer is to be kept over a period of time once bottled (and most sealed with a cork), to be consumed later in the year. 

Came in a nice big corked and caged bottle, which was funny as it was lumped in with the wine section in the Lidl I bought it in, which would explain why there were so many bottles unsold. By pure chance as passing I noted it was actually a beer! I rarely buy wine, only for special occasions! Anyway for a large bottle, this was cheap, about 1.50 Euros or less…….or something ridiculous like that. 

Nice head on pour, big white creamy head, beer was dark golden, looks ok.

La Blonde de Ch’NordVery yeasty smell, a bit metallic, quite strong but nice all the same.

On taste was strong, bit chemical and not just yeasty but something else.  
Very strong, and very bitter. Jesus those hops!

Bit too fruity with bananas and a very strong bitter aftertaste.

Too strong, not nice, and not smooth

Got a taste of cream as well, urgh. Tinty metallic taste and overall not great at all. Disappointing. 

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Ardwen Blonde

Ardwen Blonde

Ardwen Blonde

http://www.ardwen.fr/en/

Brewed by Brasserie Ardwen
Style: Blonde Ale
Launois-sur-Vence, France

Ardwen BlondeThe Ardennes in northeastern France, close to the Belgian and Luxembourg border, is a sparsely populated region mostly covered with dense forest, small mountains and not much else. 

But mad as it is, this area at the beginning of the 20th Century, was France’s leading region for brewing beers with no fewer than 230 breweries, mostly small enterprises. It might be due to the lovely fresh waters and rivers emanating down from the hills and valleys in the area. 

But the two World War’s put a sharp stop to a lot of this and brewing was beginning to look a thing of the past here. That was until, in 2003 some locals came together to start up some brewing in the area after all those barren years. That brewery was called Ardwen, using the local knowledge of the past in their pursuit of rekindling the traditions of yesteryear. Production followed shortly after, and with it some immediate success winning prestigious beer awards in France (Golden medalist at 2007 Concours Général Agricole)

Review: 33cl bottle of Ardwen Blonde: ABV: 5.6%

Ardwen BlondeHigh fermentation and also re-fermented in the bottle, using local spring waters this beer won a gold medal at the Concours Général Agricole de Paris in 2007, just so you know, ok. 

On pour looks fine, has a nice frothy white head, colour is of a deep cloudy golden beer

Head maintains well.

Some small carbonation going on. 

Ardwen BlondeA good bit of lacing present.

Lovely beer smell, can get the typical blonde smell of the malts, the fruits, and the hops, and caramel, over all a nice start.

Taste, not bad, a beer to saviour, a nice feel to it.
Typical blonde taste, but not too strong, or overbearing. Very easy to drink.
Nice beer overall, smooth, goes down well, got the malts, some fruits and the caramel 
A light beer and refreshing enough to drink, Not bad.

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