Looking forward to baron rating Coniston ales

The Lake District is not that far from Ormskirk and I scuba-dived in Lake Coniston a while back (don't waste your time, it's dark and silty and you see nothing) so when Coniston Brewery offered some samples I though it would be rude not to accept them ;) I wasn't quite expecting the parcel that arrived though as I'd only ever seen 2-3 of the bottled beers that they produced:

Coniston Brewing Company

  • Bluebird Bitter - 4.2% fine session ale with a light golden colour. The intense resinous and spicy hop character is derived from English Challenger hops. The malt is Maris Otter fermented slightly warm to give a soft fruitiness with a faint hint of scented geranium
  • Infinity IPA - 6% highly hopped pale ale, refreshing, crisp & sharp with a lingering bitter finish. Brewed with pale Maris Otter malts and Mount Hood, Challenger, Golding & Amarillo hops
  • No.9 Barley Wine - 8.5% GBBF winner, brewed once a year this classic strong golden beer has a long maturation period to give a smooth and warming character. A delightful sipping beer. Rich fruit flavours with marzipan, herbal hoppiness and Cognac overtones finishing with a warming alcohol essence. The residual sweetness is balanced by a large amount of best English Golding hops
  • Oliver's Light Ale -3.4% light straw coloured, easy drinking mild, subtly hopped with Whitbread's Golding variety hop and brewed using only the finest malt and a generous amount of demerara sugar
  • Original India Pale Ale - 6% rich amber coloured beer with a rich taste to match a superb balance of malts and hops making a classic style IPA. Brewed with Challenger & Goldings hops
  • Special Oatmeal Stout - 4.5% Oats are used in the grist to give body and smoothness, enhancing the roasted barley, giving it complex flavours reminiscent of dark chocolate and coffee. This is balanced by a fresh hop bitterness and dry silky finish
  • Thurstein Pilsner - 4.8% Pilsner style lager using 100% German Hallertau hops and best quality pale malt and wheat to give an authentic crisp clean continental style beer
  • XB Bluebird Bitter - 4.4% fine English pale ale with American Mount Hood thrown in for some robust citrus aromas
Ian also threw in a No.9 t-shirt and a Coniston mug - why don't more breweries do this? I've a ton of brewery-branded glasses but this is my first mug...

Look out for 'baron ratings' of these beers soon, and a big thank you to Ian Bradley (@ConistonBrewCo) from Coniston Brewery for sending these through to me!

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