RateBeer
overall
90
97
style
Brewed by Charles Wells
Style: English Strong Ale
Bedford, England

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

Add Distribution Data
RATINGS: 988   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.53/5   EST. CALORIES: 192   ABV: 6.4%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
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.


3.1
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
webjedi (250) - Silver Spring, Maryland, USA - JUN 19, 2006
UPDATED: APR 2, 2007 Light amber, frothy stiff head, with slow disappaition. Slight sweet hop aroma. Sweet and creamy on the tongue. Light bitters, but namely a smooth malt. A light bit of yeast can be ascertained, chewy with a slight woody aftertaste. Slight bland light fruit (apple) taste. (Botte Pour 6/19/2006) UPDATE: The green bottle version, has a bit stronger malt character, almost sour, but not quite. Still, a very passable and pleasant ale, I just wished I could get it on tap. (Bottle Pour 4/2/2007)

2.7
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
theSlipperyPen (248) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - AUG 10, 2010
Pours with the traditional darkened amber of an English bitter - though a haze gives sign of the bottle conditioning. It wears one finger of soapy white head which leaves a foam of lacing. First to the nose is blue cheese and cellar damp. With time given to breathe this subsides but is picked up again in the mouth. Toffee and marmalade aromas rise up with a buttery smell of toast and ginger snaps. Bitter sweet taste with more of the marmalade and the first signs of earthen hops. Mouth feel is slick with a medium to thin body and fine carbonation. Finish is a tapering of the malts with a hint of warm lemon grass. It’s a standard London bitter; no frills but an enjoyable drink down the pub.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
nephirem (246) - CROATIA - FEB 3, 2016
Pours a beautiful copper color with big, creamy looking white head. Smell of malts, hops and fruits. Caramel as it warms up a bit. Full body with low carbonation. Thick, oily texture. Lovely bitterness. Taste is malts, caramel, fruits. Finish is a bit dry and dominated by hops, spices and notes of alcohol, leaving a slightly hoppy aftertaste which is really nice. Overall, very smooth.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
adwoan99 (244) - Ft. Worth, Texas, USA - JUN 23, 2003
Held up to the light, appears a nice clear amber. Small head fully diminishes leaving no notable lacings. Nice maltiness, and I smell a bit of coffee, too. Mildly bitter start, finishes a bit dry. Nice brew overall.

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
BeerRules (243) - Houston, Texas, USA - MAY 28, 2005
Nice golden color with a weak white head that dissipated quickly. aroma of orange, toffee, caramel, some muskiness, and a faint bit of malt. Beautiful floral taste, with hints of strawberry, nectarine, and a slight bit of lime and some bitterness. Delicious. Nice carbonation and moutheel. Very balanced and a joy to drink.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
beervis (243) - Taylor’s Country, West Yorkshire, ENGLAND - MAR 31, 2007
Bottle conditioned. Spicy, fresh hop aroma. Pours clear copper, medium foamy white head. Delicious - caramel malts, zingy, spicy hops, citrus flavours, long smooth finish. Superb.

3.5
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BeerNinjaUK (243) - Wiltshire, ENGLAND - JUL 27, 2016
500ml bottle from Asda. Pours slightly cloudy amber with deep frothy head. Aroma mostly malty with some fruitiness.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Alexus (242) - Stavanger, NORWAY - DEC 3, 2011
0,5l bottle. Pours a nice medium head, dark copper in color. Aromas of fruits hops, grass/straws. Balanced. Medium body. A good british ale.

2.4
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 9/20
Kathy (241) - Washington DC, USA - SEP 1, 2002
Malty sweet, very slightly caramel aroma with some hoppiness. Deep golden brown color. Sweet flavor without much complexity, though there is some fruity sweetness in the beginning and some slightly bitter hoppiness in the end.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
karsten (240) - odense, DENMARK - APR 19, 2002
Nice bitter taste, marked hoppiness.


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