“Dark, roasty coffee notes mingle with sweeter, well-balanced malt notes to create very easy drinking Dark Ale, even at 6.2%. Throw in some vanilla pods, chilli and cinnamon and you have yourself a stunning little beer.”
Glassware: English pint.
Appearance: Dark brown with a creamy two finger head perched on top. Excellent lace clings to the glass as we imbibe.
Aroma: There’s a wealth of it here but it’s a little shy early on! A vigorous swirl arouses the deep roasty characters, jaffa, coffee, chocolate, spice and rich toffee with more subtle hints of dark fruits and syrupy sweetness also there. It’s good just a little cagey.
Flavour: Pretty much follows on from the nose. Kind of sweet, kind of spicy with chewy notes of chocolate, dark fruit and discernible citrusy hop bitterness midway. As it progresses the coffee and malt roast really open up and land on a dry, bitter but roasty finish with lingering spicy notes on the rear.
Mouthfeel: Slick and rather oily texture. It’s light on yet the rich malts hold the body up. Medium body and Co2.
Overall: It has been close to five years since we’ve reviewed a Grand Ridge beer. Mostly because the beers simply haven’t been up to scratch but this one is a welcome surprise. Good depth, interesting flavours and aromas and most of all…. It’s crafty! Decent drop.