Cheap Greene King & Morland ales in Asda (December)

Spotted on the Asda website tonight that Abbot Ale[5/5] and Morland Old Speckled Hen[4/5] & Hen's Tooth are all £1/bottle at the moment

Morrisons December ale & beer offers (29th Nov - 3rd Jan) (Ormskirk)

It's December's new beer & ale offers time in Morrisons so I popped into the local Ormskirk branch today to check them out.  There is nothing that special reduced this time round which is a shame as a cracking deal at Christmas time could clear their shelves.  They have the same beers on offer as last month with a few more added at about the same price.

Here are the details:
  • Greene King Suffolk Springer
    £1.49 instead of £1.99
  • Marston's Strong Pale Ale
    £1.39 instead of £1.59
  • Morland Old Crafty Hen
    £1.99 instead of £2.49
  • Wells Banana Bread Beer
    £1.39 instead of £1.59
  • Young's Kew Gold
    £1.59 instead of £1.79
They also had a rather interesting 12-bottle 'Classic Ales of England' box which I've not seen before, contain two bottles of the following beers for £14 (£1.17 per bottle):
    All of these offers are valid until 3rd January so I'll check back then to see what's next!

    Morrisons (Titanic) Green Hop Beer

    Morrisons (Titanic) Green Hop Beer [baron rating 2/5] - this 4.5% golden ale has a medical smell & too strong on the bitter hop aftertaste

    Morrisons (Titanic) Green Hop Beer reduced to £1/bottle

    My local Morrisons (Ormskirk) has bottles of Morrisons (Titanic Brewery) Green Hop Beer [baron rating 2/5] reduced by 59p to just £1

    Cheap Christmas ales at Morrisons (Ormskirk)

    Morrisons has Xmas season ales for £1.25/bottle, choose from Batemans Rosey Nosey[3/5] & White Horse Rudolph The Red Nosed White Horse[2/5]

    Batemans Rosey Nosey

    Batemans Rosey Nosey [baron rating 3/5] - this 4.9% chestnut-coloured ale has a sweet malty smell, fruity, sweet spicy taste & bitter finish

    Buy Batemans ales here

    White Horse Rudolph The Red Nosed White Horse

    White Horse Rudolph The Red Nosed White Horse [baron rating 2/5] - this 4.8% ruby ale has a spiced fruit smell & slightly spiced malt taste

    Marble & Southport Brewery ales in Source-Deli (Ormskirk)

    Picked up some Marble Lagonda IPA[5/5] & Southport Brewery Golden Sands & Old Shrimper from Source-Deli (Ormskirk) with help from owner Paul

    A great 'source' of quality ales in Ormskirk

    Discovered this week that Source deli in Ormskirk stocks a great range of quality ales including Marble, Southport & Coopers ales + more!

    Marble Lagonda IPA

    Marble Lagonda IPA [baron rating 5/5] - this 5% organic pale ale has a citrus biscuit smell,crisp hoppy taste & wonderful dry bitter finish

    Hook Norton Hooky Bitter

    Hook Norton Hooky Bitter [baron rating 4/5] - this 3.6% ale has a crisp,hoppy smell, a bitter,refreshing,clean taste & a very bitter finish

    Hook Norton Old Hooky

    Hook Norton Old Hooky [baron rating 4/5] - 4.6% amber ale,sweet fruity smell,balanced malty fruity caramel taste,slightly sweet finish

    Greene King IPA

    Greene King IPA [baron rating 2/5] - this 3.6% amber ale has a light hops/toffee aroma, a crisp gentle taste & finish - a good session beer

    Black Sheep Holy Grail

    Update 18/12/09: I'm upgrading this ale to a [baron rating 5/5] after picking up another bottle recently, it's so crisp & hoppy it goes down a real treat!

    Black Sheep Holy Grail [baron rating 4/5] - this Monty Python themed 4.7% ale has a a citrus,hoppy taste & long lasting bitterness to finish

    Buy Black Sheep ales here

    *extended* Brewdog's 77 Lager (£1) & Punk IPA (99p) in Tesco (til 1st Dec)

    Tesco have extended their recent Brewdog offer with 330ml bottles of 77 Lager & Punk IPA[1/5] for £1 & 99p respectively until 1st December

    Morrisons disappearing ale offers

    As any regular blog reader (or twitter follower) will know I visit Morrisons at the start of each month to see what that month's ale offers are. Since May or June they have had at least one ale available for £1 a bottle.  In the summer months (before I started blogging about ale) there was Hobgoblin[baron rating 4/5], Ruddles County[baron rating 4/5] and Brakspear Bitter[baron rating 5/5] all available for £1/bottle - a great price indeed.

    But recently it hasn't been so clear cut...

    It was with the Brakspear Bitter offer that things began to change. When I first saw it on offer in August, Brakspear Bitter was clearly labelled at £1/bottle with a nice big 'on offer' style shelf label.  I bought a couple (and soon returned to clear the shelf after I'd sampled it).  It was on a subsequent visit a week later that I noticed something strange.  In its second week of the month on offer the discount shelf label was gone and so it was back to the same price as the majority of the ales - £1.67/bottle.  I took some up to the cashier for a price check who confirmed that they were £1/bottle.  It remained without a shelf discount label for the rest of that month and every week I checked and bought some more for £1/bottle - I must have been the only person who knew about the offer!

    The September Morrisons offers were pretty poor (small discounts on overpriced bottles compared to other places) so I waited for October.  These were a little more promising with a great deal on 8-bottle boxes of Hobgoblin[baron rating 4/5] (8 bottles for £8) and a good price for Adnams Lighthouse[baron rating 2/5] pale ale - £1/bottle.  This Adnams ale promptly sold out in the first week of the month never to be replaced for the remaining three weeks - it's shelf spot was filled with Adnams Gunhill[baron rating 3/5] but with the shelf discount of £1/bottle still mis-displayed in front of it.

    In the second week of October's ale month I was informed by @chilliupnorth (via twitter) that his local Morrisons (Redcar) was selling Marston's Victorious Bitter[baron rating 1/5] for £1/bottle. It wasn't until the fourth week of the month that this beer finally showed up on the Ormskirk shelves and was not marked as being £1/bottle but rather placed where Marston's Pedigree[baron rating 3/5] is usually located and so labelled as Pedigree at £1.67/bottle.  A quick price check confirmed that it was discounted at £1/bottle.

    So now we come to this month: Morrison's November ale offers. There are some reasonable discounts of various strong ales but only one '£1/bottle' deal, this time for Brains SA[baron rating 2/5].  However, although I visited on only the second day of the new offers, and despite the large £1 offer sign on the shelf there was no Brains SA in sight.  I checked two days later and was pleased to see some on the shelf, but where had the large '£1/bottle' sign gone?  It was now listed as 'Brains SA Gold' at £1.67 but strangely Brains SA Gold (also priced at £1.67) was also available on a different shelf of the ale section.  I asked for a price check on the bottle and was told that it was £1, so the offer is still on but the shelf shows no sign of this. I've continued to check since the beginning of the month and the sign is still missing...

    I wanted to know about other Morrisons stores so after a quick Twitter request, I received confirmation from @chilliupnorth in Redcar & @realalereviews in Morley, South Leeds that their local Morrisons were correctly displaying the offer:

    So what does this all mean?
    • Are Ormskirk Morrisons staff members keeping all the cheap ale to themselves?
    • Are the shelf stackers clueless about ale, have no idea where this stuff should go?
    • Is it that signs are removed as these ales are not the normal ones that my local Morrison's sells and so there's no shelf space for new ones?
    • Is the local store management not willing to take the hit for the 'loss leading' ale discounts passed down from head office?
    So what do you think? Any Morrisons employees care to comment? Am I being far too pessimistic?

    Greene King LBW for £1.09 in B&M Bargains (Ormskirk)

    B&M Bargains in Ormskirk has 500ml bottles of Greene King LBW [baron rating 3/5] for £1.09 down from £1.29 (best before 06/10)

    M&S (St. Austell) Cornish IPA for 89p is still available in B&M Bargains (Ormskirk)

    B&M Bargains (Ormskirk) seem to have a never ending supply of M&S (St. Austell) Cornish IPA[5/5] for just 89p each (best before 11/09)

    Marston's mix packs on offer at Aldi (from 12th November)

    Aldi has 12-bottle Marston's packs for £12.99 from 12/11, Burton Bitter[2/5], Old Empire[5/5], Oyster Stout[3/5], Pedigree[3/5] - £1.09 each

    Jennings Bitter

    Jennings Bitter [baron rating 2/5] - this 3.5% dark amber ale has a subtle malty smell, fizzy nutty taste & slight bitter finish - not good

    Makro's November ale offers (18th Nov - 1st Dec)

    Saw the new Makro Mail today, they have some interesting ale offers on starting on Wednesday 18th November running until the 1st December. The offers are:

    Buy any two 8-bottles packs for £18.98 working out at £1.19 per bottle. Choose from:
    • Marston's Strong Pale Ale
    • Ringwood Forty Niner
    • Ringwood Old Thumper
    Buy any two 12-bottle boxes for £25.30 working out at £1.06 per bottle. Choose from:
    Or buy a 24-bottle case of Samuel Adams Boston Lager [baron rating 5/5] for £20.69 working out at 86p per bottle.

    The Abbot Ale deal is excellent, the cheapest I've ever seen it, but the Sam Adams has to be the winner, this crisp, tasty imported American ale is just 86p/bottle!

    Jennings Bitter £1/bottle in some Morrisons (November)

    @chilliupnorth has tipped me off that at least his Morrisons (Redcar) has Jennings Bitter[2/5] for £1/bottle in the 'seasonal ale' section

    Brains SA

    Brains SA [baron rating 3/5] - 4.2% amber ale,fruity toffee smell,spicy sweet slightly tart fruit taste,bittersweet toffee finish

    Delicious Jennings World's Biggest Liar in the Dog & Gun pub (Aughton)

    Visited the Dog & Gun (Aughton) last night & had some of the Jennings guest ale: World's Biggest Liar - this 4.3% ale is absolutely lovely!

    St. Austell ales on offer in Ocado (until 1st Dec)

    Ocado have 4 St. Austell ales on a 'buy 5, save 20%' offer: Admirals Ale, Clouded Yellow, HSD & Tribute - not a great price but good choice!

    Hook Norton ales on offer in Ocado (until 1st Dec)

    For any Hook Norton fans - Ocado have six of their ales on a 'buy 5, save 20%' offer - Ocado Hook Norton offer. Not sure if it's a good deal but it's a good selection!

    Promoting M&S (St. Austell) Cornish IPA's baron rating

    I've had to promote M&S (St. Austell) Cornish IPA from a baron rating of 4/5 to the almighty 5/5 - it's simply delicious!

    Black Sheep Ale

    Black Sheep Ale [baron rating 4/5] - this 4.4% amber ale has a sweet malty smell, gentle balanced taste and a dry, bitter finish - lovely!

    Buy Black Sheep ales here

    Morrisons November ale & beer offers (2nd Nov - 28th Nov) (Ormskirk)

    It's new beer & ale offers time in Morrisons so I popped into the local Ormskirk branch yesterday to check them out. Overall the discounts are not great (most can be picked up in other places for similar or cheap prices) & it was funny how they had no stock of the freshly heavily discounted Brains SA...

    Here are the details:
    • Greene King Suffolk Springer
      £1.49 instead of £1.99
    • Marston's Strong Pale Ale
      £1.39 instead of £1.59
    • Morland Old Crafty Hen
      £1.99 instead of £2.49
    • Ringwood Old Thumper
      £1.59 instead of £1.79
    All of these offers are valid until 28th November so I'll check back then to see what's next!

    Black Sheep Yorkshire Square Ale

    Black Sheep Yorkshire Square Ale [baron rating 3/5] - 5% copper ale,caramel slight fruity smell,juicy bitter taste,dry tart bitter finish

    Buy Black Sheep ales here

    A big thank you to Black Sheep Brewery

    A very welcome gift from Black Sheep Brewery came for the baron this morning - 1 of each of their 5 bottled ales - expect baron ratings soon

    Courage Best

    Courage Best [baron rating 1/5] - this 3.8% light amber ale has a gentle hop aroma, but the light malty taste is ruined by a metallic taste