beer reviews

A gem in the stash – Butts Barbus Barbus

We’ve got quite a big backlog of beers to get through.  The last time we reorganised the “cellar”, we sorted it by very loosely defined styles and best-before dates (“Belgian keepers”, “weak bitters to drink in the next couple of months”).  Trouble is, you often reach for the ones you know are going to be good, and the poorly-labelled weak bitters from microbreweries can be rather unreliable.  So we’ve got rather a lot of those gathering dust.

(Yes, we do judge beers by their label.)

In amongst the dross, we stumbled across Barbus Barbus, from the Butts Brewery.  To be fair, in this case it wasn’t the label that put us off so much as the dreaded word “organic”.  As we’ve said before, organic beer is not really an attraction for us — it’s often either bland, or if it’s from a small dippy-hippy brewery, verging on the undrinkable.

This was a surprise. It’s actually a really nice pale ale, with a lovely orangey aroma, rounded malt flavours and fruity hops.  It was also in great condition, with a long-lasting rocky head.  A slight grassy note towards the end gave away its microbrewery origins, but this is still a very accomplished brew.  We’ll look out for their stuff in future, weird pump-clips or not.

And here’s the review at The Oxford Bottled Beer Database.