As the nights get darker, so does my beer and I love to see all of the spiced ales hitting supermarket shelves in time for the festive season. Although I find Hatherwood beers a bit hit and miss, it doesn't stop me from trying them! I guess you get what you pay for and sometimes you get a nice surprise, which is the case with Winter Warmer, brewed for Lidl by Surrey brewers Hogs Back.
This is a lovely dark ale with a red hue and resembles a glass of coke when the head disappears. It initially has a large frothy beige coloured head which disappears to a thin foam.
The aroma is absolutely superb. Sweet treacle and spicy cinnamon combine to produce a mouthwatering aroma that again reminds me of coke because of the cinnamon. I started to wonder if Lidl had ripped me off and sold me a coke in a beer bottle.
Phew! It's not fizzy enough to be coke; it's very softly carbonated and actually feels a bit flat but the flavour is lovely. It's not strongly flavoured but it has a lovely sweet/bitter balance with added spice. The taste of sweet malt with the cinnamon spice is amazing and it's followed by a slightly bitter coffee and chocolate aftertaste.
It's very easy to drink and is spot on for a winter ale. That's one Hatherwood beer to which I can say 'Ale Be Seeing You again'.
Brewed for Lidl by Hogs Back Brewery, Surrey
My Untappd score: 3.75/5