Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Brewers Are Losing Their Bottle and Carrying the Can. ; in His Latest Column, John Clarke Tries Five of the New-Wave Canned Beers and Discovers These Mini Works of Art Taste Impressive Too

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Brewers Are Losing Their Bottle and Carrying the Can. ; in His Latest Column, John Clarke Tries Five of the New-Wave Canned Beers and Discovers These Mini Works of Art Taste Impressive Too

Article excerpt

IS canned beer about to come of age here in the UK? It's certainly taken a while - our first canned beer was introduced by the Felinfoel Brewery of Llanelli back in 1935.

In the intervening 80-odd years, canned beer has become associated with everyday beers for everyday drinking. Nothing wrong with that in itself; these are beers brewed on an industrial scale to very high technical specifications. You can see them in every supermarket and off licence but, while they may be technically precise, they offer little in the way of excitement for today's beer fans.

However, change is in the air. Taking a lead from (almost inevitably) the US, an increasing number of UK craft brewers are putting their beers into cans with impressive results; many bars, pubs and shops with an interest in beer now have an array of shiny cans on the shelves.

The brewers have stood up to the mark with their designs, too, and some of these new-wave cans are miniature works of art.

Aesthetics apart, proponents of these new-wave canned beers make the valid points that they are convenient, lightweight and preserve the beer better.

Let's have a look at some - most are neither filtered nor pasteurised so they will tend to be hazy.

Chorlton Amarillo Sour (5.4%).

Despite its name, Chorlton Brewing Co. is based in a railway arch in Ardwick, in the Piccadilly Mile - home to several of Manchester's craft brewers.

Owner Mike Marcus is on something of a mission to bring sour beers, inspired by old European beer styles, to the drinking public.

Don't let the word sour put you off as these are hugely accomplished and drinkable beers. This one hazy yellow and generously dry-hopped with Amarillo hops from the US so there's a big sherbety citrus hit on the nose while the beer itself has a gentle sharpness with refreshing citrus notes.

The finish is slightly tart and herbal with some hop bitterness.

RedWillow Wreckless (4.8%) Toby and Caroline McKenzie's RedWillow Brewery in Macclesfield goes from strength to strength - they have just expanded into larger premises to meet demand. A wide range of beers has been produced but Wreckless has been around for some time now - and in its cask form it was voted Champion Beer of Cheshire. …

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