Wednesday, 29 June 2011

From Blackburn to India

While there’s a wide variety of premium bottled ales available in the major supermarkets, few of them can be described as particularly hoppy. One exception was Hawkshead Lakeland Gold, a genuinely bitter beer which was a good cross between traditional English flinty bitterness and New World hops, but unfortunately after selling it for a few months Tesco seem to have dropped it earlier this year.

However, some compensation is at hand in the form of the recently-launched Thwaites Indus IPA, a 4.6% ABV brew now available in bottle at Morrisons. Thwaites house style has generally been on the malty side, but this offers a distinct contrast. The bottle describes it as having a “thoroughly hoppy flavour” and says it is a “refreshing amber ale, brewed with four hop varieties for superb taste and aroma.” It isn’t yet on the Cyclops tasting notes website.

There was little noticeable aroma, although this was a fridge-chilled sample that might have dampened it down. Colour is an appealing dark amber, with noticeable carbonation and a thin but lasting head. The flavour is very dry, with the hops coming through strongly in a surprisingly long, complex aftertaste. There are hints of fruit and a good solid malty base – it’s certainly not one of those wishy-washy lemony beers. Definitely one for a repeat purchase.

It’s also available in cask form, but it is yet another beer where the bottled version is considerably stronger than the cask, which is only 3.9%.


  1. I really enjoyed this bottle when I tried it a week ago, got another one tonight which I'm going to baron rate later.

    It's a good solid hoppy ale, very tasty - I'm just not sure it's really an IPA.

    The cask version is ok but loses some of that spicy marmalade flavour, it ends up being more Boondoggle than Boombastic ;)

  2. "It's not really an IPA" is one of those classic examples of beer pedantry, really. It's as much of a IPA as Fuller's Bengal Lancer (and in my view a nicer beer) and far more so than Greene King IPA, even the "Export" version.

  3. Curmudgeon: "It's not really an IPA" is one of those classic examples of beer pedantry, really.

    You must shake your head at then. A lot of the time the people on there can't tell whether a beer is a schwarz or a dunkel but feel duty-bound to stick it in categories.

  4. I agree, really quite enjoyable when i had it last week.

  5. Personally, I don't mind the odd drop of 'Greene King Isn't Particularly Anything'

    But it does drink a little like its name.


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