Welcome to the Drink in the Sights Victory Ale from Batemans Beer Review. I'm having a very Batemans dominated Easter weekend and this is my third of four beer reviews from the brewery. I picked this bottle of Victory Ale up from my local Morrison's and am drinking it as part of our first weekend out of lockdown celebrations. I say out of lockdown but pubs still aren't open, beer gardens aren't open, but at least I can have 5 mates round and drink some beer in the desperate hope that the sun will come out. Just for those that haven't read any of my Batemans reviews before they're a proper traditional Lincolnshire brewery based near Skegness and own several pubs in the county.
Victory ale comes in a 500ml bottle featuring a very stoic looking seafarer on a blue label. It looks nice enough. The notes say that Victory Ale 'is brewed with pale and crystal malts and hopped with English Goldings and American Liberty varieties.' If I'm honest I've never done much hop research so I have no idea if that's good or not. The label also promises 'big hops and fruit flavours with a lingering hop bitterness.' So I guess it's all about the hops, although the 6% alcohol content does imply they've put some effort into the strength too. Maybe I should have started on something a little more mild, we'll see how I feel in the morning I guess.
The beer pours a light copper colour with a small but extremely stable head, it's probably a bit lighter than I'd have expected. It looks ok to be fair. For a 6% beer the smell is very minimalistic with some biscuit notes and lots of rural earthy aromas, it's nice enough but doesn't exactly stand out. Victory Ale looks like it's going to be a potent English Pale Ale which could be fun. I'd describe the texture as medium bodied, it's certainly not as light and refreshing as some pale ales, but then I guess that comes with the alcohol content.
If I'm honest I don't really like the taste very much, which is weird because it tastes like it should be a darker beer, and I really like dark beers. It's quite a sweet beer and the hops come through much more than the bitterness or the malts. There's still an earthy feel to it though, I really can't figure out what's in the taste that I don't like but there's something lingering there. I'm going to give Victory Ale from Batemans Brewery 5 out of 10 and if I figure out what it is I don't like about it I'll come back here and update it. I would say though give it a go if you like sweet English pale ales, maybe they just aren't for me.