I’d not seen Barnsley beers until i went in my local cheap shop (B&M) so i decided to give them a whirl as they were around £1 each.
I picked up the following:
- Bee by Gum 4.3%
- Nutty Stack 4.4%
- Barnsley Better 3.8%
- Black Brite 4.5%
- Ronnies Owd Cock 4.0%
- Owd Tyke 4.6%
- Coil Oil 3.9%
- Barnsley Blonde 5.0%
The first thing that struck me were the names and the patter on the bottles, each gives you a little description of the beer then a bit called “Great Wi Snap” which suggests a food to match the beer with, although I’m not convinced a black pudding bhuna would work, with or with out beer…still they gave me a laugh and were certainly a bit different to the usual pairings and text found on a bottle of ale.
Apart from the Bee By Gum, which i drank at the top of a mountain while sat out side of my tent, the rest were drank over a weekend (mainly one one night) so i could directly compare them.
I won’t go into lots of detail about each beer just a brief summary, to be honest, they weren’t great.
Bee by Gum – I was looking forward to this beer more than the others as it was at the bottom of my rucksack after a long walk up into the mountains for a night’s wildcamp, it didn’t have a great head,was quite cloudy but was pretty tasty (although not as tasty as the Cornish IPA i also took), quite bitter and hoppy with a hint of honey.
Nutty Stack – Described on the bottle as a robust, malty red ale with a delicious caramel and toffee finish, i think i must have got the wrong beer, it was quite bland. quite flat, although it was red.
Barnsley Better – Again this wasn’t anything like the description on the bottle, instead of a traditional bitter with satisfying toffee overtones i got a weak, fizzy almost winey beer with a head that looked like the scum that you get on rivers, although there was a hint of toffee, you had to look hard to find it.
Black Brite – Things started to improve here, it was a lovely chocolaty malty stout, that wasn’t too fizzy, had a decent cream coloured head and wen’t down a treat, i think it would also go well with the food suggested on the bottle – pie and pea supper.
Ronnies Owd Cock – This one was brewed for a guy in Barnsley who passed on and 10p from each bottle goes to charity, it was also pretty tasty, light and hoppy with a tiny bit of citrus in there. The main downside was that the head was the same “scummy” foam as the Barnsley Better
Owd Tyke -Not a great one this one, it was very bitter,not in a good way, not from hops from something else, it had a hint of chocolate and coffee, the head was poor and it was quite fizzy.
Coil Oil – This was supposed to be a spiced porter but i got more of a winey beer with a hint of cloves and not much else, it seemed very watery and almost had no body.
Barnsley Blonde – Similar to Bee by Gum, there was a hint of honey and citrus, but not as hoppy.
I tried to visit the Barnsley brewery website but i doesn’t seem to exist, it would also seem the beers are brewed and bottled by Wentworth Brewery so maybe that’s why they were on sale in the cheapo shop in town.
I don’t think i will be rushing out to buy them again although, if i see Black Brite again and its cheap i may get a bottle.