I only found out about Byatt’s Brewery of Coventry a few weeks ago when my local shop said they were getting some beer from them.
Tipping themselves as “Coventry’s only Free Trade Brewery” they have been producing a wide range locally since early 2011.
I got hold of three bottles from their core range, and here they are.
Coventry Bitter (3.9%)
Sliding into the glass with a lovely glint of caramel, this light session ale has all the traditional ingredients and a big, bold and very modern feel.
Byatt’s have created a super little session ale.
You are given a lovely peppery floral aroma and this adds enormously to the first mouthful.
You just know you’re going to enjoy the beer to the bottom of the glass.
The malts are thick and round and wholesome, with a dollop of treacle, the low ABV in no way upsets the balance and there’s enough body to lead you to think this could easily be much stronger than it is.
And the killer blow is the big bag full of hops.
They’re loud and shouty and boisterous, and they linger all dry and sexy for a long while after you’re done.
Urban Red (4.6%)
A best bitter you can get your teeth into.
Bags and bags of digestive biscuits, a slight chocolate coating and a really good spiced buttery caramel.
This beer feels incredibly and deliciously thick in your mouth, like a beery cream, which makes it very satisfying.
Again the hops are big and bold and jump out at you with a smile and a wink and a slap on the cheeks.
The bitterness is immensely satisfying and filled to the brim with flowers and leaves and herbs and black pepper.
What a good pint this is.
Regal Blond (5.3%)
This strong golden ale pours with a lovely foamy head and gives off a lovely fragrant straw and meadow flower odour.
Diving in, the first mouthful is a massive hit of bitter lemon, tempered with a hint of green apple and a luck of green wood.
The malting is very light indeed, but the burned sugar just has enough body to hold its own and stop this beer collapsing in on itself.
All that said, this is a terrific bottle conditioned beer.
Why can’t they all be like this.
Full of life, this beer is zingy and exciting, a good fizz that tingles on your tongue, and a great big crisply fresh citrus dryness that lasts and lasts when you’re done.