Brews in brief

Hook Norton seasonal Flagship (5.3% ABV), originaly brewed in 2005 to mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar, is back. Strong, zesty and full flavoured, Flagship is an India pale ale, very full bodied, with Admiral hops giving a fruity mouth feel with marmalade richness and a citrus explosion on the tongue.

Watermelon Wheat (4.9% ABV) from experimental, small-batch craft brewery Tailgate, in Nashville, Tennessee, has been added to specialist importer Heathwick’s portfolio. It is a crisp and refreshing American pale wheat ale with a golden appearance and an aroma of melon. Big fruit flavours burst onto the palate and finish with a spicy, dry aftertaste.

bathforest0914Bath Ales‘ seasonal ale, Forest Hare, is back in pubs across the South West until the end of October. Brewed with the best imported hops from New Zealand, Forest Hare (3.9% ABV) is a distinctive, autumnal ale. Copper red in colour, it has heavy hints of autumn fruits, a fresh, heady aroma and a crisp, dry taste. It marries well with game and meat pies, casseroles and strong or mature cheese.

Durham Brewery has created Green Goldings (4.5% ABV), an English pale ale, using Goldings picked fresh from Pridewood Farm, near Ledbury. The Goldings hops were used late in the boil for massive aroma. The finished beer is very pale with a sharp, spicy bitterness and a hint of orange peel. Also available fro the brewery is Elder Blow (4.2%), an edlerflower pale ale with American Amarillo hops.

BrewDog Abstrakt AB:21BrewDog has released Abstrakt AB:21, an imperial stout brewed with liquorice and blackcurrants. “Layers of flavour move beyond red fruit and aniseed to include a deep bassline of espresso and bitter chocolate that act to hold the sharper, more emphasised flavours in place”, says the brewer. “Of the two featured ingredients, the blackcurrant arrives first, followed up on the finish by a rising liquorice heat alongside the warmth of alcohol.”

Australian invention BottleMate — a new type of beer bottle opener — is now available in the UK. A push down and the bottle top is off and captured by the device’s magnetic hold. Custom logo printing is available, too. More details at

Cullercoats Brewery has revealed its latest special named after shipping forecast areas. This time it’s Cromarty (4.1% ABV), a pale ale, with Scottish oats for extra creaminess and whisky oak chips for an okay aroma.

Left Coast Distribution is importing four bottled beers from Scuttlebutt Brewing Co in Seattle. The beers are Porter (5.2% ABV), Golden Mariner Pale Ale (7.1%), Gale Force IPA (5.6%) and Amber (5.1%). Left Coast’s catalogue is available at

Old Dairy Brewery has announced it is to release Battle of Hastings 950th Anniversary Ale on September 26. The beer will be a 4.6% ABV pale.

Siren Barrel Aged Caribbean ChocolateSiren Craft Brew’s Barrel-Aged Caribbean Chocolate Cake has arrived. The tropical stout is brewed with cacao nibs, lactose and Cypress wood, and is aged in Jim Beam, Clermont Springs and Makers Mark bourbon barrels for 12 months before being blended back together, with some extra cacao for good measure. “Expect all of the glorious deep chocolate and rich roast notes of the original, with an added complexity of whiskey, vanilla and enhanced wood characteristics,” says the brewer.

Box Steam Brewery has Leaf Kicker (4.7%) available as a seasonal this month. A red beer, it has a sweet but fulsome tropical fruit flavour.

Copper Beech Autumn Ale is back as the latest Chiltern Brewery seasonal. Red in colour, it is spicy and slightly sweet, says the brewer, with rounded and hoppy aromas.

Caledonian Brewery has unveiled the latest addition to its seasonal guest ales — Autumn Red. The 4.4% red ale has a gentle aroma of Hersbrucker hops which combines with sweet caramel notes from the rye crystal malt to deliver a mellow and fruitful finish. Caledonian Autumn Red

Viking Ventures is now shipping its 4.8% ABV gluten-free Goa Premium Beer for the off trade, in 500ml cans.

XT Brewing’s latest Animal range creation is The Chimp rauchbier, brewed with smoked German malts — a Bamberg classic. Its smokey flavour is achieved by exposing the malt to the intense, aromatic smoke of burning beech-wood logs.

To mark the annual running of the Kop Hill Climb at Princes Risborough (on September 17 and 18), Chiltern Brewery has released its seasonal Kop Hill Ale (3.7%). The pale amber, smooth and hoppy beer has honey and fruit aromas and has been brewed in association with the Red Lion, Whiteleaf.

The Craft Beer Co is to open another new London venue, this time in Limehouse. The premises was formerly the Railway Tavern. It will re-open in October after refurbishment.

Specialist American beer importer Left Coast Distribution has added three new canned beers from Silver City to its portfolio. The beers are: Ziggy Zoggy (5% ABV), an unfiltered lager; Ridgetop Red (6%); and Nice Day IPA (5%).

North Brewing VespertineNew from North Brewing are Vespertine (3.2% ABV), a hibiscus and red berry sour, and Piñata (4.5%), a tropical pale. Both are available via online beer retailer EeBria, which has this week welcomed Swannay Brewery, Orkney, and Wild Horse, Llandudno, to its range.

Magic Rock, Siren and Beavertown have collaborated to create Rule of Thirds, comprised in equal parts of the respective breweries’ Cannonball, Sound Wave and Gamma Ray brews. The IPA is available in cans via Ales by Mail.

Lawman Brewing Company’s Obsidian Imperial Stout has won the craft beer class of the Great British Food Awards. Highly commended in the class, judged by beer sommelier and writer Sophie Atherton, were Magic Rock’s Highwire Grapefruit IPA and Wold Top’s Scarborough Fair IPA.

Thornbridge Brewery’s chocolate porter, Cocoa Wonderland, and Imperial Raspberry Stout have each won three stars at the Great Taste Awards — two of only six three-star awards made for beer.