#172 Townshend – Cathcarts

Name: Cathcarts
Brewery: Townshend (Upper Moutere, New Zealand)
Style: Golden Ale
ABV: 4.2%
Source: Regional Wines (Wellington)

Arg. Just got back from Laneway Music Festival – horribly sunburnt, VERY tired, and with indie-electro still ringing in my ears. Subsequently this might be my worst post ever…

I had this Cartharts on Friday night while catching up with some old friends. Because of the catching up and not wanting to look like a ninny I didn’t pull out my pen and paper to make notes, I just sort of drank this, without taking a whole lot of notice.

I vaguely recall that it was pleasant, easy-drinking, and very English. Nothing too flashy or attention-grabbing about it, but the kind of thing you could happily knock back several of in an afternoon if you were that way inclined. (And obviously, we all are.)

Aside from thinking that there was some citrus from the hops, and that the malt wasn’t really ‘chewy’ as the label said it was,  I can’t really remember what it tasted like. That’s OK though – sometimes ‘background’ beers that don’t demand a whole lot of attention are OK – especially when you’re trying to have a conversation with non beer-crazed friends.

Right. Bed. Goodnight!

Published in: on January 30, 2012 at 11:10 pm  Leave a Comment  

#79 Townshend – Bandsman

Townshend BreweryName: Bandsman
Brewery: Townshend (Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand)
Style: English Bitter
ABV: 3.8%
Source: Regional Wines (Wellington, New Zealand)

It’s a touch inappropriate that I drank this beer out of my Arrogant Bastard Ale glass, because I could hardly think of a less arrogant beer to go in it.

The Bandsman is the second beer I’ve tried from Martin Townshend and, like the Sutton Hoo which I went all sorts of crazy over, this a beer I could see myself settling down and having a long-term relationship with.

From it’s low alcohol volume to it’s soft carbonation and delicate hop perfume, everything about this beer is gentle. It didn’t get all in my face and scream “Hey! Look at me!” it just quietly and confidently charmed the pants off of me.

But what sort of a beer review is that? What I mean to say is – it had a lovely aromatic hop aroma (New Zealand I’d guess) – a bit fruity, a bit floral, and a biscuity malt sweetness to round everything out. It was soft and fairly light with a gentle hop bitterness at the finish. To say it was quaffable is an understatement – but that’s just fine because it’s only 3.8%!

I’m heading down to Nelson for work in a few weeks and I’m going to try my darndest to get over to Moutere to visit Townshend, and to have a few pints at the Moutere Inn. According to Wikipedia it’s New Zealand’s oldest pub to be still operating in it’s original building, and it has Townshend beers on hand-pull. Is it just me, or does that sound like the best place to drink beer ever?

Published in: on October 27, 2011 at 2:07 pm  Comments (8)  

#44 Townshend – Sutton Hoo

Sutton Hoo TownshendName: Sutton Hoo
Brewery: Townshend (Nelson, New Zealand)
Style: Amber Ale
ABV: 4.8%
Source: Regional Wines (Wellington)

Yum! I just took a sip (giant gulp) of this and now I’m trying  really quickly to type before I lose all willpower and knock it back in one go.

This is the first beer from Townshend that I’ve tried and it’s really rather *takes another giant gulp* good. Must type faster!

The aroma is…. Hoppy! It smells like citrus and grass and caramel and … God I really don’t know, I keep drinking it before I can work anything out.

It tastes lovely: flavoursome hops balanced with malt, a soft creamy mouthfeel and a bitter dry finish. I like how it’s not too extreme – the hops are quite delicate, the carbonation is really low – yet it doesn’t leave me wanting in any way. I don’t really need to tell you that it’s quaffable – my 500ml bottle is all but gone.

I feel a bit sad now. I don’t think Townshend are still making this beer so I probably won’t have another one ever. Worse, I’ll never have it on tap which is where I reckon this beer would really shine. Oh, this beer tasting is a cruel, cruel business sometimes…

[UPDATE: Woohoo! Apparently Martin Townshend is still making this and there’s some on the hand-pull at Hop Garden (Wellington) RIGHT NOW! There should be some on at Malthouse in the next few weeks, so I’m hoping I can catch the last few drops when I go down for the Pacific Beer Expo.]

Published in: on September 21, 2011 at 7:14 pm  Comments (13)