Wine Rack have a pretty good beer selection at the moment. I popped in to buy something cool and refreshing and came out with these three lovely looking bottles. At first I just picked up the IPA and the guy working there proceeded to tell me that I should be drinking a lager on a day like this and then told me the history of craft beer and how everyone who drinks it is a hipstery wanker. Thanks! Anyway…
I do like the artwork on the front, especially little Ground Pup- how cute is he!
Bumblebee Golden Ale (5.5%)
First up is Bumblebee, described as a Golden Ale and tasting a lot like an English blonde. It poured a golden amber and looked INCREDIBLY fizzy. I tried to capture the bubbles in the photo and I think you can just about see all 2 million of them speeding their way to the top. It had a surprising caramel aroma (I was expecting something a little fruitier) and this also came through in the taste. It was particularly malty, chewy and mouth coating, but overall? Fairly bland and unexciting. Not bad, just…not great.
Gargoyle Hopped Golden Ale (5%)
After the disappointing lack of hops in the last beer, I was hoping this one would be slightly better and as soon as I’d poured it I could smell the difference, the caramel maltiness coming through, but with a darker toastiness there. All this came through in the taste, but unfortunately not the kind of hoppiness I was hoping for. Still, a nice ale, best served slightly warmer.
Ground Pup American Style IPA (5.5%)
I saved Ground Pup until last, knowing (or hoping at least) that an American style IPA couldn’t go far wrong. Citrusy hops and tropical fruits certainly came through on the nose and subtly in the taste. There was a sweet caramel hit mid mouth and little spice hit…maybe pepper? Just a hint though. And the finish was pleasingly bitter without lingering. A nice IPA that I’d drink again, though it definitely tasted more English than American.
Overall it was a bit of a mixed bag. I also don’t understand why these are also released under the same name with the same artwork, but with a completely different style of beer inside (see: Ballistic Brewing Ground Pup Double Bock Ale). I would drink these again, but they’re not ones I’m going to be running back to Wine Rack for (besides, I could do without another lecture on craft beer).