Old Dairy Blue Top Indian Pale Ale is another beer from a brewery which I have really come to like, right from my first taste of Old Dairy beer I liked it and have not been disappointed on the few occasions I have managed to find it.
Sadly my bottle stash is running low, but each time I open a beer by the Old Diary brewery I am reminded what I like about these characterful traditional ales. Each beer is not explosive but of very high quality, proving that sometimes just doing things right is enough to make a beer which as a whole is outstanding. Real ales seem to be getting a bashing from craft ales at the moment, but the Old Dairy proves that there is a whole lot which traditional ales can bring to the bar. Many of the beers I choose to drink would not really be classed as “sessionable” but sometimes one needs that beer and at that moment is is good to have something which is not only sessionable but very very tasty and at 4.8%abv this beer ticks all the session boxes.
The nose is caramel maltiness, the initial flavour is a bitter citrus but this is quickly overtaken by a biscuity malt middle full of body and very thirst quenching. The big middle gives way to an almost coppery hop bitterness with citrus lemon, the after-taste is a satisfying biscuity flavour.
The biscuity malt flavours in this beer are what sets it out from other similar beers, that is not to say that it is under hopped as the citrus hop character of Old Dairy Blue Top Indian Pale Ale give it superb balance, but the unique appeal over some similar beers is the malt. I don’t like to compare beers but if you like London Pride then you should try this beer and see what you think, I hope you are pleased.
As Old Dairy Blue Top is hopped using Styrian Goldings rather than some of the more extreme hops it does not taste like what many would consider an IPA but has definite hints of traditional IPAs rather than the new IPAs using much more bitter hops. I would guess that this beer is closer to those produced in the days of the original IPAs, but ultimately it is the taste today that I am interested in and on that front the beer is good.
I will definitely be revisiting this beer when possible and am looking forward to my first chance to try Old Dairy beer in a pub, if at festivals and from the bottle are anything to go by that will be a very happy day.