Alcoholic Ginger Beer Update #6 – Wychwood’s GingerBeard & Crabbie’s Black

The recent popularity in Alcoholic shows no signs of abating with two new varieties of ginger beer released for Christmas 2011 and a popular brewery wading into the frey.

Crabbie’s Black Reserve


nose: strong slightly syrupy with a hint of spice and fire at the end
taste: crisp and citrusy to start with then some sweetness and a good kick of ginger fire. Medium to low fizz touch of smokiness to.  This is refreshing, easy to drink and pleasantly quaffable.
with ice: the ice chills the ginger beer down nicely and on a scorch hot day this would be lovely, when it’s not so sweltering I’d go for having Crabbie’s Black chilled from the fridge to stop the drink becoming too watery.


Wychwood’s Ginger Beer

From the Wychwood Brewery in Witney. No doubt in response to the recent popularity of this sort of product. It remind me of their release of the rather tasty Green Goblin during the cider-over-ice craze of a few years back.

Wychwood describe Ginger Beard as:

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“A traditionally crafted beer infused with fiery root ginger to deliver a refreshing spicy finish with a bit of bite.

Best served chilled or over ice to calm the flames!”

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A dark, amber brown in colour.
nose: Initially, there was malt , followed by sweet ginger wine.
taste: Very smooth and quite sweet, with minimal fizz. It seemed like a real, middle ground between soda and ale.

with ice: much better, the flavour is tipped towards the soda side of that balance. Still, it’s a bit sweet and creamy, like ginger soda, but with malt undertones and a real, real fire on the aftertaste.

Alcoholic Ginger Beer Update #2 – Church’s (Aldi) & Leg Warmer

Church's and Leg Warmer Alcoholic Ginger Beer (Note that the lady on the second bottle is wearing both stockings and leg warmers, that's what you call a woman!))

Church’s and Leg Warmer Alcoholic Ginger Beer (Note that the lady on the second bottle is wearing both stockings and leg warmers, that’s what you call a woman!)

It certainly seems like the Alcoholic “Ginger Beer” is growing at a steady rate;  at the beginning of the year, I was aware of just three varieties, but now I’m about to review #9 and #10. You know something is a boom when the low-cost supermarkets want a piece of the action, and that is exactly what has happened with the first of today’s ginger beers.

Church’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer: From Aldi

Church’s (from Aldi)  %ABV

This is available at a very reasonable £1.39 for 500ml, so it’s pretty cheap, but how does it taste?

This is quite fiery and gingery, but probably the least alcoholic-tasting that I have had. It was very similar in many respects, except colour, to Old Jamaican Ginger Beer and had that same heavy warmth of fieriness at the end. The upside of this is that it is not too sweet, which means you could probably drink more of it. There’s also a slight, bitter muskiness at end. The downside is that it is may be a touch too fizzy for my liking.

Still, it represents excellent value for money and is a pretty good product overall.

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Leg Warmer (Piddle Brewery) 4.3%ABV

The second ginger beer comes from the Piddle Brewery in Piddlehinton, Dorset.  Amongst other products, they also make the following beers: Jack’s Riddle, Silent Slasher and the seasonal Santa’s Potty.

Leg Warmer itself is a seasonal beer, for the summer, and it is made with Styrian Golding and Saaz hops and real ginger.

Certainly an ale-led Ginger Beer, it has the appearance of a cloudy pale ale, with no fizz; it is quite hoppy, with ginger at the end, but it is quite subdued. However, it is most pronounced on the aftertaste. It certainly isn’t one that you’d serve on ice and it has a suggested serving temperature of 12-13 oC. Unlike most of the other ale-led Ginger Beers, this is not too rich nor stout-like, which makes it rather more refreshing.

This is available from various Piddle Brewery Outlets; I got mine from the excellent top notch Champagne Charlie’s near Ocean Village in Southampton. Worth checking out if you’re in the area and looking for something a bit special.

For the rest of the Alcoholic Ginger Beer Tasting, click here.

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