Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Worthington White Shield

It's funny. In September 2009, Mark Dredge sent over a box of beers almost like a pre Blogger Beer Swap exchange, if you will, with him receiving a bunch of home brew and some German beers. As well as some lovely Ramsgate, Hopdaemon and Thornbridge beers, Mark had sent a bottle of Worthington White Shield, a beer I'd read much about, but never had the pleasure. Well, I had the pleaseure last May, but only now realised I'd never posted my notes. And what prompted that discovery? Well, thanks to a tweet from Kristy McCready (is there Irish ancestry there) of Molson Coors, a box arrived yesterday morning, containing not just a bottle of Celebration Shield that was offered, but a P2 Imperial Stout, a Red and  a White Shield. My week was made! When I was about to drink the bottle of White Shield that Mark had sent, the Reluctant Scooper had suggested I leave it for another year, but I couldn't. Now, thanks to Molson Coors, I've another, that is going to be left for some time and, along with the Celebration and P2, will take a special place in the cellar.

So what did I think of White Shield last time I tried it? I was really surprised by the intensity of the caramel flavours, like melting demerara sugar followed swiftly by big floral hops, with light juicy-fruit and tannic tones in the mid-ground. A much gentler bitterness than I has expected, but with what I described as a real English feeling, fruity, floral, mild spice, with a brush of tea-like dryness. It leaves a lingering dried apricot, caramel sweetness and those luscious floral hops. I have to admit, I had been expecting something more punchy, but instead was swaddled in a real comfort beer. I'm looking forward to trying it again with a bit of age on it.

8 comments:

Kristy said...

Glad to be of service and glad you enjoyed.

Will look back this time next year to see what you think of the others!!

Barry M said...

Thanks Kristy :) I've read of White Shield being left a lot longer, but not sure if I have the willpower. Wondering how long the P2 should be left in peace, if at all :D

Ed said...

Not having been sent any freebies I'd say it's syrupy and disappointingly lacking in bitterness. Not like it was when I were a lad...

Tandleman said...

The White Shield bottles I had at NWAF were very good indeed!

Barry M said...

You're probably right, Ed, free beer never tastes the same anyway :D

Wish I could find somewhere a little more local to buy this kind of stuff, Tandleman, would be worth stocking up on. I'll have to content myself with Bamberg's and other offerings ;) :)

Ed said...

There's no doubt that free beer tastes better. I'll have to try White Shield again now though to see if it's improved since it moved back to the big brewery.

Mark said...

Sorry I'm just commenting on this one... I read it on my phone when it was posted but then completely forgot, with it getting squashed underneath the next lot of blogs on my reader!

Anyway... glad you liked it and it's definitely better with age. I've got a case which I leave at my parents house and it gets better and better (it's about a year old now).

And P2 is a fantastic stout! I'm looking forward to opening that one again.

Barry M said...

I know how you feel. I'm often faced with mountains of unread posts. The beer-blogosphere is a little too prolific at times :)

And, I can't believe it was so long since I drank the damn thing!