Jubilee Beers: Marston’s Single Hop Sovereign

This week I will be trying some of the beers released for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, first up is Marston’s Single Hop Sovereign.

This beer as the name suggests is brewed using only the sovereign variety of hops. I rather like single hop beers as they let you taste what each hop brings to the beer, however sometimes you wish the particular variety was being masked by others as certain hops can have very odd flavours. Furthermore celebratory beers do have a way of being badly made, but I will remain objective with respect to the beers this week.

So how is beer looking as a Jubilee beer, the bottle is purple (royal associated colour) with gold writing, it has a crown on it and they have selected a hop which has a royal name. However I do feel that this beer would have been brewed anyway and is lacking in any of the over the top patriotism, flags, corgis and pictures of the Queen which I am expecting of Jubilee celebrations and  especially the beer. This is appealing to the more refined drinker I feel, so scores low on the Jubilee-ness. (this is not a bad thing in any other context I must add)

The beer pours a golden pale ale colour with a good amount of carbonation. Lovely malty and floral nose on this one, slight citrus hints. The initial taste is a crisp bitterness leading into a nutty middle, this soon fades leaving an orange peel bitterness and slightly astringent tang to the end. Quite a refreshing flavour, leaves a tingle on the tongue.

I really rather like this, I have not had a single hopped beer based on sovereign before, but is this beer is representative I think I would rather like to try more. It has quite a complex multi-level texture, but it is somehow all different levels of bitter.If you like the classic bitter but would like something with a bit of bite to it then this might be your kind of beer, and at 4%ABV I would really enjoy a session on this. Now if this is the way the Jubilee Beers are going to go then I am looking forward to the rest of the beer this week.

Bottle/name/Jubilee-ness: 4/10
Appearance: 7/10
Smell: 8/10
Taste: 8/10
Overall: 27/40

Check back tomorrow for the next Jubilee Beer.

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