I received these two good-looking, low-alcohol beers from Sarah at Adnams. I think this has come about due to me putting my name on a distribution list while attending the European Beer Bloggers Conference. Here are my thoughts and tasting notes:
Ginger Beer, 2.5%, 330ml, 0.8 UK Units.
Pours a light gold colour, it’s clear and has gentle carbonation but doesn’t form a head. The aroma is pleasant, quite floral, some ginger present but it’s lime that dominates. It reminds me of ‘Top Deck’ lager and lime shandy. First taste is disappointing, none of the ginger heat you would expect from a ginger beer, not to say that this should be throat burning stuff, but ginger should be the star. As it happens, it’s the lime that takes over. It’s not overly sweet and there is some biscuity malt present. The finish is dry with a metallic bitterness. Overall, not a bad drink, but more of a lime infused beer than the ginger beer that I’m used to.
Sole Star, Pale Amber Ale, 2.7%, 500ml, 1.4 UK Units.
Pours a dark amber colour and it’s pin bright. Light carbonation which forms and retains a one-finger-head. The aroma is sweet caramel and lemon peel. I knew from the 2.7% abv not to expect body or any powerful flavours and that’s exactly what I found, fairly thin with gentle caramel and citrus flavours following on from its aroma. I tried my best to give a balanced view on this one, by that I mean that it’s not what I look for in a beer, it’s a nice drink and you could definitely drink a fair bit of it, but if I was looking for a low abv or session strength beer, I would much prefer to spend my government recommended daily units on a 3+% beer, one that has room to maneuver in its makeup. Sole Star is balanced and drinkable and on that basis I think the brewer(s) should be pleased with it. I’d be interested to try this one on cask and would certainly pick a few bottles up if I saw it on the shelf.
Thanks to Sarah and Adnams for sending these beers for me to try.