Whitewater Clotworthy Dobbin 5%

Here is a beer from Whitewater Brewery, based in Kirkeel in County Down, which was voted as one the ‘Top 50 Beers in the World’ at the International Beer Challenge in 2007. The brewery has been going since 1996 and claims to be the largest micro-brewery in Northern Ireland. I purchased this bottle in Tesco, so let’s see what it’s like…

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The beer was a vibrant ruby brown colour, very clear with a big, quite fizzy, frothy head that dissipated fairly quickly away leaving a thin layer. The aroma was rather light overall, caramel malts, quite sweet dark fruits such as raisin and some tangy red berries with a dose of toasted malts. The taste delivered as was expected from the aroma. I got some more toasted malts, touch more tangy dark fruit, raisin and soft toffee caramel malts. It had a light bitter palate.

I found it a little fizzy in the mouth which gave a slight thin mouthfeel. The finish delivered more toasted malts, a touch of coffee and a few more light bitter hops. What I couldn’t understand is that it’s sold a ‘ruby porter style beer’. The overall aroma and flavour profile is difficult to pigeonhole – I certainly wouldn’t consider it a porter – more a ‘Irish red ale – Brown bitter’ hybrid. Again, I’d like to try this cask-conditioned where I hope it will have a bit more richness, but as it bottled beer it’s no way world-class, but worth checking out as it does have its own unusual edge a little way from the norm.

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