A recent browse through my local 1st Choice Liquor uncovered a few ales from the UK that are on the epic list. So, kicking off my next century of beers is number 101, the Greene King Abbot Ale.
The bottle says:
The label is uninspiring, featuring the words ‘Abbot Ale’ and a picture of what I can only assume to be an Abbot. But what really catches my attention is the bottle…it’s a clear glass bottle. Clear glass is a concern since it doesn’t filter out the sunlight like amber glass does, which can affect the beer inside. The words “brewing perfection” are engraved into the glass around the bottom of the bottle…the clear glass bottle. Hmmm
The body is clear amber with a small light tan head. It smells dangerously like a stale lager (which I’ve had a few of in my time), and the first taste doesn’t thrill me. There’s some nuttiness in there, a little tangy citrus and a hint of sweet malt, but it’s all hidden behind a veil of stale awfulness. The finish is dry to the point of being chalky, and I think it’s giving me chest pains…
No, there is no second half…it’s gone down the sink instead.
The bottle claims brewing perfection, but it’s an epic failure as far as packaging goes. Why would someone decide to transport this beer across the planet in a clear glass bottle? So it may then travel in a hot truck to an Aussie bottle shop, where it can sit on a shelf for months IN A CLEAR GLASS BOTTLE?? Who thought this would be a successful endeavour???
It really is a shame. I can taste the remnants of what was possibly a great beer in there, and judging by the Untappd comments it probably deserves its place on the epic list. But this bottle was completely ruined. I probably shouldn’t count it towards my total…but it’s not my fault that it was packaged in a way that no good beer should be. I don’t know if I should blame the brewery for using these bottles (I’m sure it reaches their local consumers in a fresh state), or the importers for shipping it such a distance (surely they knew it wouldn’t stay fresh!) All I know is that this is the first beer off my epic list that I didn’t actually finish.