beer reviews pubs real ale

Marble Madness

After reading various people raving about Marble for the last couple of years, a visit to their brewpub was always going to be a top priority for our visit to Manchester.

First up were, pints of, er, Pint and Bitter which we found to be very similar. Both were bitter and grapefruity almost to the point of astringency, but not quite. Differences did emerge after a few more comparative slurps — Bitter was marginally darker in colour and balanced a touch more toward malt than hops. We were very impressed by both.

Lagonda IPA looked similarly yellow at first glance but was sweeter, fuller bodied and noticeably stronger at 5%.

Then something that wasn’t yellow: Stouter Stout, which was profound. Thick, roasty, chocolatey and filling — damn near a perfect specimen.  Trying Chocolate next to it was a little surprising, being silkier but actually less chocolate-like.

We’ve had Ginger before and it was just as good as we remembered. We took the advice of the chaps at Blogobeer and also tried it mixed with Chocolate and it was indeed delicious — not unlike Jamaica Ginger cake. Yum.

The enigmatically named Brew #14 was yet another yellow bitter ale, but this time with a more English hop character, very evident dry-hopping and some pear-drop character.

Dobber, despite being 5.9% and a little heavier and fruitier, was, yes, you’ve guessed it, yellow and hoppy.

As for the pub, it’s a great building and has a real buzz. We ate in the back room and service was a little slow but friendly (had someone failed to turn up for their shift?).

In summary, a good pub, with great beer, but (like Hopback) they could do to make the differences between some of their many yellow beers a little less subtle, or simply ‘consolidate the range’ as a management consultant would say.

10 replies on “Marble Madness”

I don’t think you can fairly compare them to Hopback. They have a wide range of beers, but they are spaced out over the spectrum and regulars can tell them apart.

Taking your examples-Manchester (it’s never called Bitter) at 4.2% has more body than the 3.9% Pint and has its own fan base. Personally I prefer Pint which has more bitterness to the fore comapred to the fruitiness of Manchester.

Glad you enjoyed the pub, though.

Ah, that explains why the barman corrected me when I asked for Bitter. Bit daft of me, with hindsight, to assume that was the name because that’s all that was written on the pump clip…

Glad you enjoyed the Marble Arch, folks. Lovely, lovely place (in my humble, etc.)

I’m with Tyson on the Pint vs Manchester question – I reckon the former is an almost perfect summer thirst-quencher (although the latter is a perfectly good session bitter). But for choice I’ll nearly always go for the Dobber or the Chocolate. Gorgeous beers, both.

Been there last November. The Lagonda IPA and the Dobber were great. So was the food though I had the same experience as you with the service. Good atmosphere at the pub area but not as good on the restaurant area.

I imagine if we were to drink them more often, the differences would emerge, as they have done with the various brown Fuller’s beers we tend to drink down here in London.

Beertruck — the pub was so busy, we couldn’t even get standing room in the main bar when we turned up. Brilliant interior, too. Is everything in Manchester tiled and/or adorned with monumental slogans and mottos?

was in there for the first time last week after the city-united game but only got to try pint and ginger, both delicious, the former perfect after the walk from eastlands.

will definitely head back there the next time i’m in manchester, that ginger/chocolate mix sounds right up my street.

That day was the first and last time I was in Manchester. So far, I hope… But as far as I can remember, from the 4 or 5 pubs I visited, it was the only one on that style.

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