Thomas Hardy's Ale
Where: Whimple, Engaldn
Samuel Merritt Says: "Brewed as a one-off to celebrate the English writer in 1968, this is the first Barleywine I ever drank. I like it best at about four years, but have had it as old as ten. When you age a Barleywine, you can count on losing almost all of the essential oils from the hop, leaving the beer without that big citrusy, pine character we're so used to in great American Barleywines like Brooklyn Monster or Sierra Nevada Bigfoot. I won't describe Thomas Hardy's Ale, as the author does it better when he described the Dorchester Ale this beer was designed to replicate: 'Of the most beautiful colour that the eye of an artist in beer could desire; full in body, yet brisk as a volcano; piquant, yet without a twang; luminous as an autumn sunset; free from streakiness of taste; but, finally rather heady.'"