Looking forward to baron rating Tiny Rebel ales

We've not had any Tiny Rebel at Baron Towers for quite some time, you don't really see it around in the North West that much and I'd not been ordering that much beer online either recently. Ales By Mail sent through a few beers last week as an early Christmas present and inside was quite a nice selection of Tiny Rebel Brewery ales:

Tiny Rebel Brewery
  • Beat Box - 4.5% American Pale Ale
  • Bo'Ho -  5% Bohemian Lager
  • Hadouken -7.4% Amplified IPA
  • Cali - 5.6% American Pale Ale
  • Captain Insano - 10% Triple IPA
  • Clwb Tropicana - 5.5% Tropical IPA
  • Cwtch - 4.6% Welsh Red Ale
Look out for 'baron ratings' of these beers soon, and a big thank you to Paul from Ales By Mail for sending these through to me!

Buy Tiny Rebel beers from Ales By Mail

Oakham American Pale

Not bottle conditioned
Oakham American Pale [baron rating 4/5] - 4.2% gold ale,floral tropical smell,resinous citrus bittersweet taste,long dusty pithy finish

Oakham Kiwi Gold

Not bottle conditioned
Oakham Kiwi Gold [baron rating 4/5] - 4.2% pale gold ale,zesty tropical herbal savoury smell,citrus very bitter taste,fruity bitter finish

Badger Union Joker

Not bottle conditioned
Badger Union Joker [baron rating 3/5] - 4.4% copper ale,herby berries gentle lemon smell,savoury citrus taste,dry earthy spicy bitter finish

Looking forward to baron rating Wychwood Hobgoblin IPA



I've been extremely fortunate to have been sent a lot of beer over the past eight years of blogging and every now and then a brewery includes a few extras like glassware, bar runners, stickers, etc.

On Friday I received what I consider to be the best and craziest thing ever to have been sent to Baron Towers.

A wooden chest, with clasp and handle looking like something straight out of a Harry Potter movie. On opening the chest I was presented with two bottles of Wychwood's brand new Hobgoblin IPA as well as a very nice looking Spiegelau IPA tasting glass.

A brand new IPA with the perfect glass to taste it with!

Wychwood Brewery
  • Hobgoblin IPA -  5.3% India Pale Ale,heftily hopped & aroma packed. Brewed with Fuggles, Goldings & Styrian hops & then amped up by the addition of some mighty American hops (Mosaic, Chinook, Centennial & Citra).
Thank you to Emanuele from R&R Teamwork for sending this through for a baron rating!

Buy Wychwood ales everywhere!

Boss Brave

Not can conditioned
Boss Brave [baron rating 2/5] - 5.5% amber ale,candied toffee fruity smell,candied sweet stewed fruits taste,sweet fruity finish

Looking forward to baron rating Clay Brow Nano ales

I've been tweeting with "big niz"over the past few months knowing only that he's local and does what appeared to be some home brewing.

After further conversations and investigation I found out that he's been home brewing for over a decade and was approved to be able to supply his Clay Brow Nano Brewery beers for wholesale back in May this year, he's currently brewing with a half barrel setup.

So far his outlet is the wonderful CatHop Beers in Rainford but he's looking for more chances to get his bottles into the hands of beers lovers. He offered to drop some samples off at my house, which was extremely kind of him, here is what was left for Chris & I to baron rate:

Consistent branding and all bottle conditioned
Clay Brow Nano Brewery
  • Eclipse - 5.4% oatmeal stout, a smooth velvety texture with hints of toasted oats & chocolate
  • Mr P's - 5.7% coffee & milk stout, blended with seven different malts and infused with cold-brewed Guatemalan coffee beans
  • Mrs P's - 6% black IPA, a dark, hoppy IPA hopped with Centennial, Mosaic & Vic Secret
  • Parkin's - 4.5% pale ale, a copper-coloured pale ale hopped with Challenger & East Kent Goldings British hops
Thank you to Neil from Clay Brow Nano Brewery for handing these over for a baron rating!

Buy Clay Brow ales from CatHop Beers

Wychwood Ripsaw

Not bottle conditioned
Wychwood Ripsaw [baron rating 3/5] - 4.2% dark amber ale,maple syrup smell,earthy roast burnt bittersweet taste,long malty sweetish finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes

Wychwood Dunkel Fester

Not bottle conditioned
Wychwood Dunkel Fester [baron rating 1/5] - 4.4% black ale,coffee smell,smooth dark chocolate coffee taste,metallic nasty acidic finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes

Williams Bros Stravaigin

Not bottle conditioned
Williams Bros Stravaigin [baron rating 4/5] - 6.4% cloudy gold ale,honey tart smell,oily honey orange mild tart taste,long citrus finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes
Thank you to @WilliamsBrewery from Williams Bros. for sending this through for a 'baron rating'!

Buy Williams Bros ales direct

Baron on Tour: CatHop Beers

It was a lovely crisp sunny day today so what better to do than visit a fairly new local beer shop over in nearby Rainford. CatHop Beers are based in the Inglenook Farm complex, off the Rainford Bypass.

Run by newly-weds Neil & Sam, they opened the shop in August 2017 and have been enjoying a growing customer base. Mainly concentrating on local and north west beers they venture up to Cumbria, down to Macclesfield and across to North Wales, Manchester & Derbyshire to collect their stock.

Their selection is excellent, including breweries such as Marble, Cloudwater, Tiny Rebel, Red Willow,  and many others. There were loads of beers there that I've not 'baron rated' yet so I expect I'll be visiting from time to time. They are the only stockists of Clay Brow ales, and are always looking out for new and exciting beers to stock.

So why the name CatHop? Well, they are definitely cat lovers, with photos of their cats stuck to the side of the till and various other cat references dotted around the shop. Originally planned to be called HopCat until they found that name was already claimed by a US company so a quick swap of the words and they were sorted.

They are currently open Thursday to Sunday (11am-6pm Thursday/Friday, 11am-5pm Saturday/Sunday), with the rest of the week reserved for driving around collecting beers, and hopefully some well earned time off too. I'm really looking forward to seeing how this beer shop develops, their current range is excellent and they are two of the nicest people you could meet!

Find them on Facebook (cathopbeers), or follow them on Twitter (@cathopbeers) & Instagram (cathopbeers)

Lost Industry Black Licorice Gose

Bottle conditioned with perfect carbonation
Lost Industry Black Licorice Gose [baron rating 4/5] - 3.9% black ale,tart licorice smell,bright tart taste,fast fading finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes

Tarn Hows Blueberry & Vanilla Stout

Not bottle conditioned
Tarn Hows Blueberry & Vanilla Stout [baron rating 5/5] - 5% black ale,fruity vanilla smell,slick fruity choc taste,velvety vanilla finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes
Thank you to Chris for bringing this round for a baron rating!

Buy Tarn Hows ales from Beer Ambleside

Shepherd Neame Barley Wine 2014 (aged)

Bottle conditioned with perfect carbonation
Shepherd Neame Barley Wine 2014 (aged) [baron rating 4/5] - 10% dark amber ale,strawberry smell,burnt sour fruit taste,long caramel finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes

Fuller's Vintage Ale 2013 (aged)

Bottle conditioned with perfect carbonation
Fuller's Vintage Ale 2013 (aged) [baron rating 5/5] - 8.5% amber ale,earthy stewed fruit smell,rich sherry trifle taste,long fruity finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes
Buy Fuller's ales direct

Harviestoun Ola Dubh 30 (aged)

Bottle conditioned with dull carbonation
Harviestoun Ola Dubh 30 (aged) [baron rating 5/5] - 11.3% black ale,vineous dark choc smell,oily bitter choc taste,fruity warm boozy finish
Listen to what Chris and the Baron have to say about it

Subscribe in iTunes
Thank you to @HarviestounBrew from Harviestoun for handing this over for a baron rating!

Buy Harviestoun ales direct