There have been mutterings on various blogs about whether beer is the new wine, can be the new wine, or even if it wants to be the new wine. No-one seems to have asked it yet, but I guess that it’s not too fussed either way. You can read bits of the debate on Woolpack Dave’s blog here and Pete Brown’s blog here.
I have more or less conclusive evidence that beer not only CAN be the new wine, but IS. I give you exhibit A – Chardonnayle.
What’s Chardonnayle? Well, I can’t tell you too much. I ordered a half of it for my girlfriend at Harry’s Bar in Wakefield – an Ossett Brewery (leading the Real Ale Revolution, apparently) pub – and it seems to be one of the brewery’s own beers. However, internet research pulls up a few conflicting bits of information. It was, it seemed, brewed at the Red Lion brewery, Ossett, which later became Bob’s Brewery (FUN BEER FACT: I used to live across the road from the titular Bob).
All this waffling and barely researched bollocks is introducing a truly interesting (although not necessarily truly good) beer – Chardonnayle.
It’s presented with a pump clip that looks like a fancy wine label. This 5.1% beer smells slightly of lavender and elderflower and the taste is really crisp, barely bitter at all and with loads of grape-ish fruity flavours. I didn’t really like it, my girlfriend was quite keen, but the woman next to me was drinking it pint after pint, so she liked it.
While most of my internet research on this subject has been sketchy to say the least, one thing I have found is the notes about this multi-award winning beer. They are from this rather odd Wakefield CAMRA website for Bob’s Brewery and they explain what’s gone into this beer. They say this:
“complex stylish strong pale ale with hints of lemongrass & fruits like Chardonnay wine, with Willamette hops for aroma”
Which explains not very much, really.
I don’t have much to add, apart from noting that Chardonnayle is actually a registered trademark, and is worth trying for interest, if nowt else.