Olde Suffolk English Ale
Olde Suffolk English Ale – Aged in Oak Vats for 2 Years
Greene King, Westgate St, – Bury St. Edmunds – Suffolk, ENG
Information: Site – “Strong Suffolk Vintage Ale is unique and unrivalled in this country. It’s a blend of two ales: Old 5X , which is brewed to the maximum strength possible (around 12% abv) and left to mature in 100-barrel oak vats for a minimum of two years, and BPA, a dark, full-bodied freshly brewed beer which is added just before bottling. The result is a unique beer – strong (6% abv), dark, fruity, oaky and very, very special!”
Traveling once again across the big pond to sample some of the less ‘American’ beers, we find ourselves in Jolly Olde England with a bottle of Olde Suffolk English Ale. Now I’m quite familiar with oak-vat aging, so this isn’t too much of a surprise, yet I have never tried a combination of two distinctly different beers as they have done here. Time to quit yakin’ and start pourin’.
The ale itself is a deep brow hue with a rich, bubbly head. The nose is familiarly nutty with a back-up note of something like old wood and dried fruit. The body is deliciously reminiscent of raisins and cranberries, but not in a cloyingly overtly fruity sense, but rather in a nice, fermented-skins kind of way? Wine-like, I suppose, but not wine-y, if you know what I mean. If you’re reading this you probably do. There are a few very minor hoppy bitters hidden beneath, as well as a nice peppery swallow that hangs on for a bit. It’s by no means dry and ends with a little strongish-alcohol finale that’s really kind of nice. I could very much see this paired with English fair like roasted lamb and potatoes. Excellent.
Rating: * * * *
And Olde recipe and an Olde Ale that really shines.