A beauty to behold, Howay in a Manger is a nutty brown colour with a HUGE frothy Mr Whippy style head. It was quite excitable on opening and came whooshing out of the bottle but I was ready for it and didn't spill a drop. As Yoda would say, 'Lively one, this is'.
The aroma is deliciously malty with a hint of sweet caramel, spice, fruity orange and hops. The smell seems to evolve as it smells of sweet malt and caramel at first, followed by a whiff of slight citrus bitterness and then another hit of malt. I couldn't wait to dive in for a sip.
Wow! My eyes closed in ecstasy when I took my first sip and it felt like there was a Christmas party in my mouth as flavours of malt, sweet spice, toffee and dark fruit combine to create a taste explosion. It's quite fizzy with a decent body and has a lovely creamy mouthfeel. This really is an amazing winter ale, and just like Wizzard, I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day so I could have a pint of this delicious ale.
More malty than a bag of Maltesers, this is an outstanding winter ale with a huge malty kick and I hope Santa puts a bottle of Howay in a Manger in my stocking this Christmas. Although, just like a puppy, Howay in a Manger isn't just for Christmas and I could happily drink this all year round. Ale Be Seeing you Again!
Brewed by Mordue Brewery, North Shields
My Untappd score: 4.75/5