Ever since I heard that Adnams were starting to work up the “Jack Brand”, I was anxious to try the new range of beers. Fortunately my father-in-law managed to secure a six-bottle selection box for me.
…And as the Dry-Hopped Lager had been so successful at the International Beer Challenge (a gold award, no less) I thought it’d be appropriate to start with this one. (You’ll notice that I’ve been to Suffolk for the weekend, as there’ll be a minor spate of Adnams reviews on the YIMB site…)
Arriving in one of my nice new fancy glasses from Ocado (which I had to buy, *sniff*) this lager is a beautiful “lagery” colour, a really splendid running bead assured me that it would be lively in the mouth – which it most certainly was. The head was lacey, frilly and whiter-than-white.
The bottle notes say that this lager is dry-hopped with Galaxy – which I was surprised at, as I remember Galaxy from things like Old Golden Hen and I thought I’d get a ton of citrus/pineapple; but, this is a dry-hopped lager – and not a heavily hopped pale ale or IPA, and I was pleasantly surprised at the restraint of the hopping.
The aroma that I did get was lovely: fresh, clean, ever-so-slightly mineral and lightly ozoney – just like the Southwold sea air…
The taste of Jack Brand Dry-Hopped Lager is refreshing, clean and has a very very slight irony note. There’s also a tad of minerality at the edges – which is also very nice indeed. A good touch of bitterness and a gentle dryness on the finish makes you keep drinking until there’s none left in the glass.
That’s the thing with lager, you see: It’s not what’s in the taste that counts, so much as what’s NOT in the taste. When brewing a lager it’s so tempting to hop it hell and back – thus ensuring any imperfections or off flavours were covered up.
Jack Brand Dry-Hopped Lager is testament to the skill of Adnams as a brewer, as it’s presented naked, pure and unsullied; meaning that the resulting beer is pretty much perfect…