Beer Review: Best – Wylam Brewery

Today’s review is on one of my dwindling supply of lovely Wylam beers I have. However, this time around, it is a beer that I’d consider completely out of left field for these guys. All the beers I’ve had have been gorgeous bold IPAs or big stouts but this is something completely different. It’s an English Best Bitter, simply named ‘Best’. It’s the only traditional ale I’ve seen in their lineup and it comes in at 4.5% ABV.

Visually, a classic clear, amber ale colour with a light, white head on top. A malty sweetness on the nose that reminds me of a really good golden ale. The body of the beer is very clean drinking. There is a nice malty backbone being supported by a little citrus flavour. A touch of hoppy bitterness on the finish but for my taste I think this needs to be a bit more prominent.

A quick note on the can art: Perhaps Wylam’s most simple can design but I think it works for the beer. A classic ale jug design on a can, which is a storage method you don’t typically associate with the style of beer inside.

This is a really lovely traditional ale that was easy drinking and and full of flavour. That said, it didn’t remind me enough of a true English bitter. The main reason is that it simply wasn’t bitter enough for me. The stronger component was certainly the malts which gave a lovely smooth sweetness throughout. However, personally, I would have liked the hops to come forward a bit more. Additionally, while price isn’t a factor in my rating of a beer at £4 a can it’s hard not to consider whether this is any better than many other real ale breweries and their bitters, at a cheaper price point. I’d argue potentially not.

Score: 7/10

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Additional Information:

  • Hops: Challenger, Admiral and Bramling Cross
  • Malt: Barley
  • IBU: Not Available
  • ABV: 4.5%
  • Gluten Free: No
  • Vegan: Yes!

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