‘What was that?’ You ask. ‘A porter from Tetley?’ Well, for my money, now that Tetley has been completely bought out by Carlsberg and the historic brewery in Leeds now sits abandoned and decaying, Tetley no longer exists, despite the continued use of the logo by Carlsberg UK. Anyhow, Carlsberg has produced this limited edition beer with the intention of giving 10p for every bottle sold to the Help for Heroes charity, which does great work for soldiers wounded in current conflicts. The label on the bottle informs us that Carlsberg hopes to raise £100,000 from sales of this beer, which is available on tap and in bottles. This is all very well and good, and most certainly a worthy cause. You may think that Carlsberg has ample funds simply to give the charity the money without the necessity of boosting their own profits at the same time. You may wonder about the moral rectitude of buying anything produced by this Fizz Monster. That’s your choice.
What of the beer itself? It is a very dark red in colour with an off-white head that remains (albeit thinly) right to the bottom of the glass. The beer is quite smooth. The dominant flavour is chocolate (though it is by no means massively chocolatey) with some fruitiness and there is an underlying malty bitterness. The finish is quite dry with a hint of smoke and a whisper of dry earthiness.
I was quite prepared to poo-poo this beer when I saw it, but it is surprisingly good. Not of the first rank of porters, maybe, but a good effort. If only it was brewed by Tetley!
The Help for Heroes website is here – www.helpforheroes.org.uk
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