Shepherd Neame Christmas Ale
Reviewed by Brady White on December 5, 2018 in Holiday Guide
- Brewery: Shepherd Neame
- Origin: Faversham, Kent, England
- Rated On: December 5, 2018
- Best Before: N/A
- ABV: 7.0%
- Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature
- Style: Winter Warmer
- Rating: GOOD !
This 500ml bottle pours a clear, bright medium bronzed amber colour, with a teeming tower of puffy, loosely foamy, and bubbly off-white head, which leaves some stellar blotchy lace around the glass as it slowly seeps away.
It smells of bready and biscuity caramel malt, some muddled pome fruitiness, a hint of earthy spice, and some plain leafy, herbal, and floral noble hop bitters. The taste is grainy and doughy caramel malt, a lesser biscuity toffee sweetness, baked apples, faint generic citrus notes, and more earthy, spicy, and floral hoppiness. The carbonation is average in its palate-satisfying frothiness, the body a so-so middleweight, and generally smooth, with a wee airy creaminess evolving as things warm up a tad around here. It finishes off-dry, the malt keepin’ on keepin’ on.
Overall – this is an approachable enough version of the style, simple in its bearing. Something to sip on while sitting in front of a fireplace, listening to distant relatives’ stories, or the like. And the well-hidden extra 2 points of ABV may surely help one get through the latter.