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Tasting – Kent Goldings Bitter

03/12/2013

KGBitter  kent_gold_bitter2

A second take on Ordinary Bitter, the Kent Goldings version was almost similar to the first with the main difference being the yeast used (Wy1318) and a slightly different hop schedule. The previous bitter was enjoyable but could have used more character and body. It also could have been more clear. This iteration of the recipe fixes some of the issues I had with the last beer and I’ve enjoyed it quite a lot.

Appearance : A crystal clear (the picture doesn’t do justice) copper body with a slight head (I’ve turned down the pressure a bit for this one). The beer leaves a lot of lacing as the surface goes down. It certainly looks the part of an English bitter.

Smell : Toasty malt that somehow smells a bit sweet. There is also a pleasant fruity thing going on. I can’t pick anything particular out but it is very “English”. A far cry from the very neutral smell the Nottingham fermented bitter had.

Taste : The taste has a nice toasty cracker malt character followed by a slight toffee-malt sweetish taste. A firm bitterness keeps it in balance, nothing cloying about this one. This beer is much more nuanced and complex compared to the previous, there is a lot going on but it’s hard to pick anything particular out.

Mouthfeel :  Slight carbonation that fits the beer nicely. The beer has a richer mouth feel because of the lesser attenuation but still nothing you would call thick or cloying.

Notes/thoughts : A much, much better version of an Ordinary Bitter, the difference that the choice of yeast made is huge. This one has that estery quality that gives such a slight beer that much-needed character the malt and hops alone can’t deliver. I’m also starting to like these small beers (this one has an ABV of about 3%) a lot more than something with a huge ABV content. As long as you get a lot of taste and character in to the beer it is much more enjoyable (and healthy) to have a few pints in the evening while staying functional instead of sipping a pint of  DIPA and having a headache in the morning. These session strength beers are certainly something I’ll try to keep on tap in the future.

Edit 10/12/13 Added another picture. Sadly, this beer is running out quickly. A definate rebrew at some point.

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