Monday, 4 March 2013

Review #128: William Mucklow's Dark Mild (Bewdley Brewery)

Style: Strong dark mild.
Appearance:  Distinctive dark ruby/garnet colour and off-white head. 
Nose: Subtle cream and berry aroma. 
Taste:  Light red grape, redcurrant and blackcurrant fruit notes make themselves felt at first. Backing these up is a strong vanilla and soft caramel sweetness from the malt. There's also a 'stale' flavour to the malt, a little like stale bread, a characteristic I often come across in milds. Hops are detectable but stay out of the way, giving a little bitterness to a herby finish. Little alcohol to detect despite being 6%.
Mouthfeel: Full and rounded. 
Carbonation: Mid to low.
ABV: 6%
What's in it?: Maris Otter, Crystal and Chocolate malts. Fuggles and Goldings hops.

This is the first beer I've tried from Worcestershire's Bewdley Brewery. When they started up in 2008 they were the first brewery in Bewdley for 96 years. This dark mild is named after the last head brewer, William Mucklow, who created the original strong Dark Mild on which this beer is loosely based. Milds in general, let alone strong versions such as this, are few and far between these days. Although saying that, many a British microbrewery has one in its repertoire, albeit often as a seasonal special. Sarah Hughes Brewery does about the most famous strong mild in the UK, its Dark Ruby Mild, being at the same strength as William Mucklow. Today its brewed at the Beacon Hotel in Wolverhampton. Also, Dark Star Brewing Co. (Sussex) do Victorian Mild, reportedly another good example of a strong mild, available in May.

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