Craft beer advent calendar 19: Fraoch Heather Ale

So I’m a bit annoyed at how this craft beer advent calendar is getting more and more weird as time goes on. I didn’t give Meantime much of a score but looking at the recent offerings such as the Sticky Toffee Pudding ale recently I long for a simpler time.

Or do I?

Tonight’s ale is a Heather Ale. I don’t really know what that means but it’s a 5% amber ale from Scotland. Apparently it’s brewed to a 16th century recipe; it smells a bit sweet, but with a savoury edge. It actually reminds me of baked beans; not sure why¬†– in fact, in Japan, you can get these sweetened beans, which come to mind as I raise this to my nose.

All of that disappears on the first taste. It’s something spicy, very familiar…I can’t quite put my finger on it and now it’s annoying me. I think it’s a sauce that it’s reminding me of, but I’m not sure.

I can’t drink this for very long, though, as the spiciness is just too overwhelming; so, 16th century recipe or not, this is getting just a 5.5.

It’s mustard! The beer tastes of mustard – and yellow mustard at that, not the wholegrain stuff. That’s very weird. It has a very distinct savoury mustard taste, which I am not too keen on.

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