Beer Review: John Hampden’s Golden Harvest Ale – The Chiltern Brewery

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My wonderful friend Carl got me a personalised pint glass for my birthday! I thought a nice, classic ale would do it the best justice so my Dad let me pinch one of his Chiltern Brewery beers. He recently bought himself a big mix pack of their gluten free ales and has been telling me how much he enjoys them. I’m fan of the classic golden ale so I thought it would be appropriate to go for that. It was brewed to celebrate the brewery’s 15th anniversary and launched by the Earl of Buckinghamshire, who is a direct descendant of John Hampden himself.

Visually, the beer pours a clear amber-gold colour with a tight white head. The aroma of a classic golden ale comes through with that malty sweetness and a touch of citrus. The backbone of the flavour is of course the malts with that smooth sweetness then leading into that English hop bitterness. That citrus from the nose is just present enough in the beer to act as a little balance to the malts. Light and smooth drinking.

A quick note on the bottle art: Nothing particularly exciting about the bottle. Simple and straight to the point.

It’s a pretty good ale. I think it’s hard for classic styles like this to really be a standout showstopper. However, I’m not always craving a beer like that. Sometimes I just want a simple ale done well and that’s what this golden beer from Chiltern is. The levels of sweetness from the Maris Otter malt and bitterness from the Fuggles hops are balanced well to create a smooth drinkable pint. Today is also CAMRA’s (Campaign for Real Ale) 50th anniversary and I think this is a good a beer as any to toast the occasion with.

Score: 7/10

Thanks for reading! Cheers!

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Additional Information:

  • Hops: Fuggles
  • Malt: Maris Otter
  • IBU: 21
  • ABV: 4.8%
  • Gluten Free: Yes!
  • Vegan: No
  • Purchase Location: Chiltern Brewery Web-Shop


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