Friday, 11 November 2011

Goose Island 'Honker's Ale'

Been off radar for a while since I've been busy doing the uninteresting things that I am hoping will earn me the money to continue my exploration of all things beer-related. It's also been a rather indifferent week on the beer front after the excitement of Stout Day and The Session.

So this post is due to, but not really inspired by, Goose Island 'Honker's Ale' which is apparently inspired by visiting English country pubs. All well and good making beer in an English style, but there are plenty of English beers out there that, although they are faultlessly made, are in the end just not that interesting!

Lovely brown colour with a hint of orange. It has a vague roasted malty nose, and there's a sweetness to start, which doesn't linger into the finish since it's taken away by a kiss of hops.

Not the sort of beer that inspires, although it was more interesting than the Lone Star by Pabst, and Samuel Adams Boston Lager, both which almost made my hop-thirsty palate feel like I hadn't drank a beer. Again, not unpleasant, but indistinguishable from many of its contemporaries. In its defence the Sam Adams had some richness that reminded me of some German Oktoberfest beers, but lacked the punch that the real thing has.


Apologies if this all comes across as a bit negative, since I don't like posting negative reviews, but it strikes me that with the Craft beer scene in the USA thriving, and feeding a similar resurrection of interest in different beers over here, it would be a shame if these sort of beers are held up as examples of a new beer scene in the US. And perhaps more worryingly it did make me wonder what sort of beers are ending up state-side and our friends in the US are thinking 'this is OK, not exciting, but OK... I hope my Sierra Nevada's cooled down so I can have that next.'

Goose Island Honker's Ale, 4.3%, £1.59 (355ml) Beers of Europe
Lone Star (Pabst), 4.7%, £1.59 (355ml) Beers of Europe
Samuel Adams Boston Lager, 4.8%, £1.59 (255ml), Waitrose. Also £30 a 24 bottle case at Majestic.

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