Friday, 5 November 2010

Capital Ale

The final Wells & Youngs beer to sample is the flagship of their range, the 6.4% ABV, bottle-conditioned Young’s Special London Ale. It comes in a brown bottle with an attractive, mainly blue label.

It pours clear, leaving all the sediment in the bottle, and exhibits a vigorous natural carbonation, as with the London Gold, which suggests that the brewery have mastered the issue of getting consistent quality and genuine secondary fermentation from bottle-conditioned ales.

The colour is dark amber – not a pale beer, but fairly pale for a British ale of this strength. It has a full, satisfying mouthfeel, as with all the W&Y beers. The aroma is subdued, mixing fruit with CO2.

There’s an initial surprising hoppy attack, which then slowly metamorphoses through spiciness into a lingering aftertaste of sweet, creamy malt. It is fairly light in body for its strength, although you are aware of some alcohol warmth.

A distinctive, complex, multi-faceted beer that makes a good contrast with the richer, heavier Fullers 1845, which is of similar strength. Definitely one to be savoured.

7 comments:

  1. The best Youngs beer by far.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dear Mudgie,all this talk about
    fine ale is really putting a strain
    on my boycott of pubs and booze
    (like most decent people I dont drink at home.
    Fortunately I often visit Belgium and Holland** where ,as you know,
    there is no shortage of real beer,
    in real bars with real men (and women)

    ** Just amended their ban giving
    small bars the choice.

    Hope Springs

    ReplyDelete
  3. I love this beer, so interesting to drink if you want it to be, and a great sipper otherwise, definitely [baron rating 5/5]:

    http://theormskirkbaron.blogspot.com/2010/04/youngs-special-london-ale.html

    ReplyDelete
  4. Agree- tried this and really enjoyed it- sometimes I enjoy a smoke whilst drinking so I was lucky as the garden was mild and with good craic !

    ReplyDelete
  5. Special London Ale is certainly a very fine beer, and I agree with Ed that it is by far the best beer to come out of the Young's stable.

    My only slight gripe is, and here I'm being really nit-picking, shouldn't it now be called Special Bedford Ale??

    ReplyDelete
  6. One of my faves, actually. Wonderful. So bright, so refreshing and zesty.

    ReplyDelete
  7. On the basis of your write up, I must keep an eye out for it.

    ReplyDelete

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