BREWER: Heineken, North Yorkshire
STYLE: Brown Ale
VESSEL: 550ml bottle
I‘m fairly sure it was a Friday during the early Spring of 1996. My Mum announced that she and my younger sister were heading to Cornwall for the weekend. I looked at my Dad and my Dad looked at his 15 year old son… FREE HOUSE!!! (we both said in our heads). So I went about calling my chums Sammy and Oli to hatch a plan. My Dad went about calling his pal Malc to see if he maybe fancied a pint later. He did.
Fast forward a few hours and somehow a plan was set for the five of us to go and watch a band in the pub down the road. Solid. Fast forward a few more hours and it was time to depart for the White Horse in Winkfield Row near Ascot (it’s now an Argentine Restaurant in case you lot thinking about flocking).
Now, as the cab rolled up another glance was exchanged between my Pop and I. This time it was him saying to me in his head, ‘Don’t f*”k this up’. ‘Cool ya jets old man, I got this’ I said back, again with no words actually spoken.
We arrived. The other three were already there at the bar with three lagers in front of them. My Dad ordered up a pint of Best and then attention switched to me. Now the expectation was that I would simply slip into a lager too but no, I thought that I would mix it up a bit. I had seen some pretty slick cats kicking around drinking Newkie B from the bottle and seeing that I was wearing a fake fur coat I thought it was time to join this crew.
I flippin’ loved this ale and it flew down!! Like really FLEW DOWN!! The night pumped along nicely I seem to remember and everyone was on top form. And I was holding it together too which was pretty surprising seeing as I had necked about 200 bottles of Dog in 3 hours. We said our goodbyes and all headed back home. Now, this is where things suddenly took a turn. Once in bed with my eyes shut the room suddenly went into what can only be described as a South Shields spin. I was in trouble, big trouble. After the flying down there was now a large concern that things were going to fly up. Let’s just say that I didn’t quite make it to the toilet in time shall we…
Until now I had not touched NBA since. Not necessarily because of my experience with the Broon that night but more circumstance. I went back to lager for a bit and once the ale stage came along in my life there were about a million to choose from and Newkie just didn’t come into my thinking.
So, how is it then?
We have one of the most iconic beers ever here and she is a winner! There is a fair amount of carbonation but that does not stop this brew being very smooth in the sip. The texture is really thin too which again helps it slip down well. I can now see how I ended up in trouble with this ale all those years ago. It really does FLY DOWN!! Once into the taste a lovely soft caramel develops slowly to accompany the slightly bittersweet and nutty flavour.
Classic and class.
Jymi’s Rating: 77%
In days gone by, it used to be that Newcastle Brown Ale was a staple of a night. And for many I bet it still is. But, sadly, for me, I left it as a regular in my menagerie of tipples when I waved goodbye to those heady university days.
The thing is, now that I’m reacquainted with it, I find myself wondering why I left it behind. With it’s aroma sending me straight back to the student union, I feel young again. But this is not just a young person’s drink. Oh no, it’s so much more than that. This is a big hitter. As in, think of a drive from a young Tiger Woods kind of big hitter.
I like NBA’s mild flavours. It sits well in the range of beers available. And considering that range has increased since I was a uni student, that’s impressive.
Truth be told, I really enjoyed having a trip down memory lane drinking this. And yes, an old flame has been rekindled. It’s back on the (ever growing) list of beers for a night out!
Sammy’s Rating: 83%
MUSE ON BOOZE RATING: 80%
MOB review next weekend: URBAN by JUBEL BEER