Rich and heady

This is a real ale in a bottle, a bottle-conditioned beer, from a good London brewery who make some excellent stuff and run some good pubs. These real ales should be served only slightly chilled, not at fridge temperature; making them too cold dulls the flavour.

Fuller’s 1845, 6.3%

Dark amber colour. This is rich and malty, with obvious high alcohol. The taste is very persistent and the alcohol makes the finish taste very round and rich. It is quite weighty, but is obviously lively and refreshing. Not the kind of thing you’d sit down and drink bottle after bottle of, it is too powerful and alcoholic, but as a pick-me-up on a cold winter’s day it works just fine. I think this is a lot better balanced than their other bottle-conditioned beer, Vintage Ale, which is just too sweet, heavy and ponderous. A very good beer, and a personal favourite.

This is stocked by Waitrose (and Ocado, their online persona) and larger branches of Sainsbury’s have it too.