Brewed by Charles Wells
Style: English Strong Ale
Bedford, England


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 949   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.52   EST. CALORIES: 192   ABV: 6.4%
Bottle Conditioned. Occasionally available in the cask.
Production moved from Youngs to Wells & Youngs in 2007. Brand acquired solely by Charles Wells in 2011.
Ingredients: Maris Otter and Crystal malt; Fuggle and Goldings hops. Dry hopped with Golding and Target hops. Re-pitched with fresh yeast and wort in the bottle.
Young’s Special London Ale is the UK’s No.1 bottle conditioned ale. It is an unpasteurised, living beer, matured in the bottle for a fuller, more complex, multi-dimensional, fresher taste. Without artificial carbonation, the only fizz is the natural effervescence created by fermentation.
“A wonderfully balanced, deep-golden strong bottled ale, brewed from pure malt and a phenomenal amount of hops. A lively, fruity character with suggestions of banana and orange zest.”
CAMRA Champion Bottled Beer of Britain - 1999.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jamesie1857 (1694) - Sheffield, South Yorkshire, ENGLAND - NOV 6, 2014
500ml bottle from Waitrose - Amber gold body with thick lasting white head. Aroma is malty with notes of citrus and floral. Fruity sweet taste with caramel and underlying slight hop bittreness which becomes more prominent in the finish. Decent ale

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
slowrunner77 (7284) - Reno, Nevada, USA - OCT 17, 2014
"this is a slightly dark, medium bodied, and well balanced ale. it won’t do anything that makes you stand up and take notice, but it’s pretty solid if not extraordinary."

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Simmo (27) - AUSTRALIA - OCT 17, 2014
Strong aroma of hops in the bottle and glass. Pours a wonderful golden colour in the glass with a frothy cream head that lasts reasonable well. Good lacing. Feels lively in the mouth, very easy to drink. Very tasty flavour of hops, fruit and a spicy aftertaste. A great beer that packs a punch with a high alcohol concentration!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
eduardovl (1104) - SWITZERLAND - OCT 14, 2014
UPDATED: DEC 15, 2014 500ml bottle served in an English pint glass. A: Pours a dark orange to amber color. Clear. Forms a medium bubbled and aired white to yellow color. Many lacing are formed and left in the glass S: Sweet grains. Toffee and caramel malts. Flowery citrus hops. Bready and fruity Ale yeasts T: Slightly sweet malts. A bit fruity too. Toffee, caramel malts, grapes, brown bread. A little bit metallic. End is hoppy and bitter. Not extremely, just as a good ESB should be :) M: Light body. Medium carbonation. Grainy and bitter aftertaste. Great balance O: Excellent drinkability. Great British ale. Recommended [ BA Review @ 11/28/2012 ]

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Alengrin (3401) - BELGIUM - SEP 14, 2014
Apparently originally made by the brewer for his wife of Belgian descent... Cloudy ochre blonde colour, soft malty character with delicate fruitiness and sharpish, ’green’ hop bitterness in the finish (dry-hopping), long-lasting and almost IPA-like. Deservedly a prize winner.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
Bulk_Carrier (2788) - Final Resting Place, Vermont, USA - AUG 26, 2014
Thanks for the bottle, Ben. This was poured into a mug. The appearance was a semi-dark brown color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within about a minute. Light lacing came across in a speckled way. The smell was a bit grainy with a light milk chocolate and then a slightly herbal quality coming in. The taste was pretty much the same. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a decent sessionable quality about it. Overall, decent English Strong Ale, I think I could see myself having again, maybe in an English pub.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MichaelAwesome (5852) - Wanne-Eickel, North Rhine-Westphalia, GERMANY - AUG 18, 2014
Had that one lots of years ago when I visited London for the first time. Well, yesterday I had it once again with McTapps and it is and was a classy piwo. Hops and caramel, bit chocolate, some malt and grains. Very living, very drinkable piwo with a slightly sweety finish. Maybe the king of english bottled beers when rate those which are not that citrus hop minded. Thumbs up. High with them.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
McTapps (5853) - Ruhrcity, GERMANY - AUG 18, 2014
Bottle bought at Sainsburys in Folkestone. Pours out in a deep golden colour with low head and medium body. Aroma of fresh hops, barley and cake. Taste of fresh hops, light malt, cake, biscuits, flowers, pine and spruce. Finishes off with herbal-smooth hints. Nice one to enjoy.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Fredxyz (28) - BRAZIL - AUG 14, 2014
Cor forte. Sabor forte, maltado e muito lúpulo. Esqueci de seguir a recomendação da garrafa de servir devagar deixando os sedimentos. Tenho que conseguir outra garrafa!

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
lobs_ols (408) - LATVIA - AUG 11, 2014
Dark gold, strong white head. Hardly any aroma, oddly enough- maybe some sweet notes. Maybe I’m doing it wrong. Taste - balanced bitterness, very refreshing somehow. I like this, though I struggle to describe it.

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