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


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 976   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53/5   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 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
BCAR (222) - Naperville, Illinois, USA - NOV 26, 2003
Dominant honey nose. Very sweey, syrupy. Carmely, thin body. Not too impressive. Hint of bitterness on the finish. Mostly imbalanced toward the sweet end of the spectrum, though. I used to love this beer before I knew better.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
veronika (410) - SWEDEN - NOV 22, 2003
Golden color and a very nice head. Aroma is from grass and a little sweet. Some bitterness late in the finish. A little thin but ok...

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
rlgk (16899) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - NOV 21, 2003
Golden with a nice head, quite carbonated. Aroma is sweet but also from grass.Flavor is sour like a typical ale.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
I.C.suds (189) - Da U.P. eh?, Michigan, USA - NOV 18, 2003
Light amber with white head. Beautiful presentation of english hop balances the smooth sweet malt. Easy finish. Yet another perfectly balanced beer from England. PNW- PAY ATTENTION!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
papajohn (1249) - San Diego (Mira Mesa), California, USA - NOV 13, 2003
Clear amber in color with an initial generous white head. Nose is sweet. Flavor is rich caramel with just enough bitterness to balance it out. Aftertaste is bitter sweet.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Gusler (2653) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - NOV 12, 2003
Young’s Special London Ale (ME) The beer pours a crystalline burnished copper color; the head Antaean in size, creamy in texture and the color a beauteous light tan as it disappears the lace forms a thick and glutinous veil to obscure the glass. Nose is rich in the aroma of sweet malt, caramel, a bit brandy like, crisp and fresh, with a slight undertone of ripe banana, start is ambrosial, excellent malt profile with the top rich and full in its feel to the palate. Finish is austere in its acidity and the hops sententious in their spiciness, very long lasting and semi-sweet aftertaste that has just a hint of alcohol bitterness, a real fine beer from one of my all time favorite breweries.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
bu11zeye (12576) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - NOV 9, 2003
(Bottle) Pours a golden brown with a medium beige creamy head. Great flavor with a nice cramy finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
jutuahol (189) - Jyväskylä, FINLAND - OCT 30, 2003
Copper red, sparkling, thick beige creamy head. Malty, fresh, flowery nose. Medium body, bit dry, creamy. Bitter, caramel-like malty, sweet. Sweet, bitter, dry and prettty long finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ClarkVV (5216) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - OCT 18, 2003
UPDATED: APR 11, 2007 Very big hoppy aroma, lots of goldings. Some alcohol and some sweeter light melon notes and maybe a little soft peach/nectarine? For bottle conditioned this is extremely clear. . .Still, a nice orange-amber color but only a tiny tiny bit of hay colored creamy head. Quite bubbly. Begins very hoppy and clean. Instead of getting crisper and drier, there is a good warm alcohol presences followed by some thick chewy malt: little bit of caramel but mostly fruit flavors, quite exotic and complex. Finishes quite crisp again, moderate bitterness and with a full and quite bubbly mouthfeel. Good balance and gets even better as it approaches room temp. A toned down version of Fullers Vintages, not quite as complex or near as adventurous, but what it lacks in these categories, it almost makes up in its clean, balanced, conservative flavor. Needs more bottle conditioning, the little bit of yeast I saw seemed like a joke.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
igneous1 (1529) - Davenport, Iowa, USA - OCT 14, 2003
very clear, looks just like apple juice (ok, maybe a little darker than that). slight head at best, but a nice ring of big bubbles. aroma is some toffee, and toast (as in toasted bread) and a hint of sour apples. a little apple in the flavor, and slight alcohol in the finish. thicker mouthfeel than most british ales. just saw this bastard is brewed with Fuggles...now wonder the big notes of apple.

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