Duke of Bronte, Capstan F.S.
From: Old Bear Brewery, Keighley 01535 601222
Tested: Mmm, yes.
Reviewed: Singletrack Magazine – Issue 39
It’s been a while since we’ve had an alcohol review but I figured that it was time. Besides, the nice people from the Old Bear Brewery actually asked if we’d like to taste test their new brew.
This is beer to be respected – because at 12.5% it’s claimed to be the strongest beer regularly brewed in the UK. Using only Yorkshire hops and malt, it’s brewed in Keighley, just over the hill from us. Just like a good wine, bottles of Duke of Bronte can be kept to improve with age and when drunk, it’s best appreciated in a large wine glass to let the beer breathe. Moving on to the appreciation of it then, it needs to be stored upright and poured carefully, due to some natural sediment.
First impressions are of a slightly odd, but very organic, ‘farmyard’ aroma, which was soon replaced with a good, honest beery/hoppy smell. The taste isn’t as sweet and cloying as other ultra-strong beers, with pear drops and a delicious cinder toffee taste and a hugely long, chewy finish. There’s very little to indicate that it’s a strong beer (4.2 units per 330ml bottle!) and it’s very drinkable. Worryingly you can even buy it in casks from the brewery…
Overall: A great beer that really can be sipped, and appreciated, like wine around the dinner table. Now, how much for a case?