Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Master Brew (Shepherd Neame)

Kentish brewers Shepherd Neame proclaim this beer to be their "local hero", widely drunk from Sevenoaks to Margate. It's known as "Master Blaster" by the locals.

The cap lifts off with a pneumatic hiss, and tosses up a wealth of Kentish hop aroma. The colour is a pleasing light amber.

It's idiosyncratic as pretty much all SN beers are, their particular hop/yeast mix proving very recognisable. This 4%abv ale is a commandingly steady drink though, and a good flagship for a brewery that is often associated only with Spitfire and Bishops Finger in the supermarkets.

The opening note is blink of crystal malt sweetness, followed by a grassy and dry main draft. The signature Kentish hops leave a bitter and crisp finish, perfectly session pitched in length. This is the definition of a year-long all rounder for those who can adjust to the slightly "back of the mouth" taste of the local hops.

7/10 - Pleasing and capable everyday ale. Very Shepherd Neame in a good way.

- The Broadside