Double Bitter

Fermenting: 08/11/2004 Bottled: 20/11/2004

Two cans of Wander Bitter and some sticklebract hops did not a good beer make. Massively overbittered and almost undrinkable. It did improve a little with age, but many half-finished bottles of this managed to get poured down the drain. British drinkers describe this as a ‘strong ale’ and tell me it tastes better near room temperature.

2/10

American Pale Ale Wetpak

Fermenting: 23/10/2004 Bottled: 07/11/2004

I started getting adventurous here. A Wetpak (from The Country Brewer) contains malt mixed with hops, some grain to sparge, some finishing hops, and an appropriate yeast. You need to mix it up and simmer for over an hour to bitter the malt, then add the other ingredients. This turned out brilliant. It was my first full malt beer, and was massively hopped, almost over hopped, and was bursting with flavour and aroma. It is made somewhat in the style of little creatures pale ale (from Fremantle’s Little Creatures Brewery). Worth the effort for sure – arguably my best beer yet. Some bottles had a strange aftertaste though.

9/10