This is a truly black ale with a creamy brown head and an mm aroma of dark roasted malts and freshly picked hops.
It’s taste is an initial sweetness moving very swiftly into a strong hop bitterness of an IPA type.
As the brewery taste notes say “A black IPA sounds wrong but tastes so right!”
It does in fact have a bitterness from the hops, which is not the same as a dry black stout which would have bitterness from the roasted black malts. Both the initial aroma notes and the initial sweetness are expected from a traditional dark ale, then both the aroma and the taste move swiftly to that expected from a good India Pale Ale.
This is a slightly dark golden ale with peach and fruity aromas. The taste starts with good malt notes going into refreshing citrus bitterness without the ubiquitous grapefruit taste; which runs on into the finish and lasting aftertaste. This is a pleasant refreshing light ale suited to a summer ale and a ‘small beer’ being only 2.8% ABV, but has lots of summer pale ale flavour and body. It is an unfiltered live ale.
Brewed by Wiper and True, a Bristol based craft micro-brewery in St Werburghs, north of the city centre. Their bottles are labelled with simple stylised labels with black ‘type’ print and a gold metallic picture.
A ‘small beer’ is traditionally brewed from the sparged mash after the initial strong wort is removed for brewing stronger ales. It is also the ale given to the workers, being low strength.
Half Moon Bay Brewery- Mavericks’ Beers and Ales – Pumpkin Harvest Ale 5.5%
This is an amber ale, with a cream head, with a malty aroma of spice ginger, pepper and cinnamon notes. It is a slightly sweet, strong barley wine type, warming tangy taste with a hop bitter follow-on and pumpkin notes. This would be a great autumn- winter warming ale. 5*
This ale is made with local Sugar Pie pumpkins, roasted with a secret blend of spices, then added to the brew kettle. The brewers taste notes say it has pumpkin pie spice flavour with biscuity malt notes.
The American Mavericks craft brewery, founded in 2000, is based in the surfing location of Half Moon Bay on the coast south of San Fransisco, famous for its Mavericks surfing location. It’s sister Half Moon Brewery is based in their brewery tap and restaurant.
I would be wary of going out on a surf board after a pint of this very pleasant ale, especially if the waves top out at 24 metres (80 feet) high.