A Week With Honest Brew

With the vast array of beer subscription services online, it’s great to know that there’s one that offer lots of flexibility and options so that you can choose the one that suits you.

Honest Brew are the result of four friends getting together back in 2014 with a plan to make craft beer more accessible, by matching beer to people’s tastes and getting them sent directly to your front door.
They offer a range of products including 3 variations of their Honesty box subscriptions, varying individual cases bases on different themes, Howlers for cans and much more.
You are in control of the box, deciding what styles of beer to receive, the regularity that they are posted out and options to choose a box that fits your budget.
Flexibility really is the name of the game.
Honest brew work with over 100 breweries from around the world and ensure that their beers are received and shipped within 4-6 weeks to ensure freshness.
95% of their beers are not sold in supermarkets.

I’ve enjoyed a few beers from Honest Brew’s range through their Craft Beer Advent Calendar, their Howlers and  a couple of sampler boxes.
This February, I’ll be taking the plunge and ordering one of their regular Honesty Box subscriptions.

The beers you see before you, come from a variation of the Honest Brew Sampler which contains 6 different beer styles along with a craft beer glass, a tasting guide, 2 packs of tasty Propercorn Crunchcorn snacks and a £10 voucher which can be used on any of Honest Brew’s Honesty boxes.
All this for the very specific price of £17.90 (£2.98 a bottle along with all the extras).
I was desperate for a can of Fourpure Brewery’s Switch House and they were kind enough to oblige, hence the additional beer in my sampler.

Here is a run through of the beers contained within my sampler box and a taster review of each one. Let’s crack them open.

White Hag Brewery / Honest Brew Collaboration • American Pale Ale • 6.2 % ABV

20170123_192817A collaboration pale ale, taking a step back and harnessing the power of the hop.

A light golden pale with a little haziness, which produced a lively white head nice compact bubbles. As a result the head stuck around after pouring.
The aroma mixed citrus and pine with a little grassiness. A sweet caramel can be picked up at the back from the malts.
This translated well into the flavour, where citric and pine flavours were really prominent along with the caramel. A clean and pleasant bitterness to over in the end to guide you to the finish.
A medium bodied beer with a high carbonation level yet very smooth. No astringency and goes down with ease.

Vibrant Forest Brewery • Chinook • American Pale Ale • 5 % ABV 

20170124_195657A single hopped pale ale, making use of Chinook hops for deep grapefruit and bright citrus.

A deep golden pale with lots of haze from the dry hopping. A small white head forms which again sticks around for some time after pouring.
From the initial pour, I was getting the aroma of apple juice which settled to give a sweet yet tropical grapefruit. The sweetness has a candy like quality about it.
The flavour is balanced between strong grapefruit from the hops along with biscuits from the malts which come in afterwards.
A strong pine bitterness kicks in at the end and merges with the sweetness to give a really pleasant finish.
A medium bodied pale with a moderate carbonation level as well as being smooth. Oh so smooth!
Enjoyed during #craftbeerhour between 9pm & 10pm every Tuesday on Twitter.

Northern Monk Brewery • Northern Star • Mocha Porter • 5.9 % ABV

20170125_201854A porter blending a range of speciality coffees from Brazil with chocolate and lactose.

A deep brown to almost black porter. The light I could make out through the colour was clear. A lively tan head forms which combined with the tight bubbles holds itself for some time.
A smooth balance of coffee and chocolate really comes across in the aroma. This comes together with the roast of the darker malts. I was able to pick out a touch of fruitiness which may have come from the hops or yeast esters.
The flavour really pushed the chocolate whilst the coffee had more of a supportive role. The lactose brings some sweetness to the party whilst the darker notes add bitter notes towards the end.
Finally, a little fruitiness comes in and merges with a spicy bitterness which gives a great licorice finish.
Full bodied, lots of carbonation and a smooth body. Cream and rich from the use of the lactose and really gets the tongue tingling.

Siren • Vermont Tea Party • Earl Grey Pale Ale • 3.6 % ABV

20170129_111719A loose leaf pale ale with Earl Grey tea and Lemon Zest.

A slightly hazy pale, light golden to straw in colour which produces a white head which holds its form at the top of the glass for some time after pouring.
The aroma kicks things off with citric, lemon notes along with orange, peach and a slight syrup based sweetness at the end. It had an aromatic, almost medicinal quality about it.
Flavour wise, Vermont Tea Party was all about the sharper and dry flavours including lemon zest and citrus. A strong and lasting bitterness kicks in at the end.
A medium-light bodied beer with a medium carbonation level which carries the citric flavours nicely and gives a chewy texture.
A perfectly solid pale ale, but I’m not sure I  was able to make out much in the way of Earl Grey Tea.

Eight Degrees Brewery • Sunburnt • Irish Red • 5.0 % ABV

20170127_171511A red ale packing flavours and aromas of toffee, plums, cinnamon and spice.

A lively beer straight from the bottle, Sunburnt fills the glass with a beer that is medium amber in colour, clear and produces a small off white head which lingers.
The aroma is pretty subtle, offering a slightly sweet and graininess along with some earthy hops which are fairly balanced.
Changing things up, the flavour gives a mixture of caramel and red berry which leads into a spicy finish before ending with a light and easy bitterness.
Sunburnt gives a seltzer like quality in the carbonation yet offers a smooth and medium-light body.

Wylam Brewery • Hickey the Rake • Limonata Pale Ale • 4.2 % ABV

20170127_171501A pale ale loaded with citrus to hit you with masses of sherbet lemon, lime and tropical pineapple.

A beer, pale straw in colour poured from the bottle. Offering with it a hazy appearance along with a big white head which lasts for some time after pouring.
The aroma gives plenty of tropical fruit such as grapefruit along with lemon and lemon zest. The citrus starts strong then offers a little sweetness.
Lots of tangy lemon and drier lemon zest really kicks off the flavour which moves into a sweet and almost sour tangyness on the tongue.
Lemon really is the name of the game with this beer.
A crisp, refreshing and really vibrant beer that really gets the tongue tingling.

Four Pure Brewing V Tate Modern • Switch House • Pale Ale • 4.8 % ABV

20170127_171552A collaboration pale ale with a classic and refreshing flavour. A beer that will change through the seasons to make use of hop availability.

Switch House is pale gold in colour with a little haze and some visible sediment. It produces a small white head which holds itself really well after pouring.
The aroma balances citrus notes as well as more rounded fruit notes with a touch of herbal and sweetness right at the back.
The flavour does well to balance the above elements with the prominent flavour being grapefruit and orange (or somewhere between). There is a subtle and easy bitterness at the end which mixes with a sweet caramel to finish things off on a high.
A medium bodied pale which is light in carbonation and offers a really smooth drinking sensation. Almost milky in texture.

Switch House was available with Honest Brew up until December 2016, but can be picked up from the Tate modern directly.

My experience with Honest Brew has been great from beginning to end.
Delivery tracking is provided with your case, to keep track of it and everything is packed up in a sturdy box.
Delivery timescales are great too: deliveries arrive between 24 -74 hours.
With over 100 breweries to choose from and a vast array of styles, there is plenty to chose from and get excited about – whether you are going for one of their honesty boxes, specially selected cases or just building a case of your very own.
I was really happy with the beers in the sampler case and especially enjoyed Wylam Breweries – Hickey the Rake, Northern Monks Breweries – Northern Star and Vibrant Forest Breweries – Chinook.
Keep up the awesome work!

To show my love for Honest Brew, I’ve opted to pay for the premium Treasure Chest Honesty Box which arrives in just a couple of days.

Special HopPilot.com Offer

If you liked the look of the Sampler box but wanted to jump straight in with one of the Honesty Box subscriptions, then click this link to see how you can take advantage of a special “£10 off your first box” offer.
The link will run you through the available options and how you can redeem the voucher.

If you have had an opportunity any of the beers in the Honest Brew sampler, then visit @biertaster and let me know what you thought.

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