Powder Monkey Drop Anchor (440ml can, 4.6% ABV)

Hello, there! It’s been a while, hasn’t it?

Brewhouse overlord Matt is resurrecting the beer blog, and we return with an absolute cracker.

Powder Monkey is a new brewery in Gosport, named after the boys (usually 12-14) who, in the age of sail, ferried gunpowder from a warship’s magazine to its cannons. Makes that paper round you had in your teens look like a walk in the park.

All of their beers have a nautical theme, in keeping with Gosport’s history. An aficionado of European beers might see the word ‘Vienna’ on the side of the Drop Anchor can and assume this was a take on the famous Vienna lager, but no – this is firmly in the American pale ale category. The reason is, it’s brewed with Vienna malt, which gives a toastier character compared to the pale malt or lager malt usually used as the basis for a beer.

It pours a hazy, dark orange, with a thick pillow of foam. The aroma is dense with tropical fruit and the taste confirms what your nose has suspected – mango, lychee and pineapple in abundance.

It’s juicy, smooth and generous on the bubbles, but light enough (at 4.6%) to be highly quaffable. The finish is of lingering fruit and peppery hops.

In some American pale ales it’s all about the dry hop flavour – those aromatic high notes so characteristic of US craft beer – but on its own it can make a brew seem a bit thin. Not so with Drop Anchor – plenty of depth, and plenty of flavour. Highly recommended.

Written by Richard Salsbury

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