Cricket Hill is one of the newer microbreweries in New Jersey. They have been around since 2002. Colonel Blides Cask Ale is one of their flagship beers. It’s as the name says, cask-conditioned beer which was bottled from a cask without extra nitrogen or carbonation. I first ran across this brewer at the 12th Annual Garden State Craftbrewers Fest (New Jersey Beer Goes Here) I also have visited their brewery (NJ BEER GOES HERE::The Cricket Hill Brewery visit ) and I even got my first growler from these fine people. I was sort of happy to find this beer. I’ve only had their beer from a growler or from a tap.
When I first poured the Colonel Blides Cask Ale I noticed it had a semi-sweet smell, a little different from what I remembered of the Colonel Blides Bitter I had many moons ago. The smell was slightly fruity though and a little more fruit aroma came to the nose as it warmed up. Any other sweetness was over powered by the hops spiciness hitting your nose.
In the glass this beer looked great. It has a fantastic caramel, copper-like color accented by a whitish head when poured. It was unfiltered and the beer did not have a lot of carbonation giving it a calm appearance and very little lace on the glass.
Colonel Blides Cask Ale had a light citrus taste which was a little overpowered by the hoppiness of the ale. I did not get a lot a flavor beyond the malt and the hops. The citrus was trying to fight its way out for attention, but it was beaten and left in the trunk, only letting a yell now and then. The overall taste was not that clean and took me a bit to work out.
This beer had a low drinkability for me. I was not fond of it. The Beer had an uninspired label on the bottle and I could not think of anything I would want to have or read with it. The beer was okay. Not the worst beer in the world, not the best. I wish I could find more information from the brewer also. I can’t seem to find commercial descriptions of this beer from Cricket Hill or any other descriptions of their current lineup.
I feel like I am being rather harsh on Colonel Blides Cask Ale. I hope it does not seem like a dig against Cricket Hill. This is the first time I have had a reaction of this nature. I have had Colonel Blides before and like it, but it was not called cask ale back then. I took it on vacation with me in a growler and it held up very well (Otakon, the epic beer run! : Beer Utopia) “Growler Izatherez & Growler Gservo Colonel Blide’s Bitter, Kölsch style beer
Gservo’s thoughts. Before we left New Jersey we had the Bright Idea of having an Emergency Beer Kit. A ‘just in case things got crappy’ stock of 3 growlers from Cricket Hill Brewery. Owning a growler with cooler is a wonderful thing. We ended up having this beer for breakfast 2 days (don’t ask). On the last day of our trip, we had the growler out with closed coffee mugs to hide the brew. Most people did not know what the growler was, so we had no issues except this one table next to us. It really was not a problem, they recognized what the growler was and asked to sample some our “special breakfast drink.” I was happy to share!”
So it may be I just don’t like there beer in a bottle. I will take a growler back to Cricket Hill Fill it up and have Colonel Blides in a park with some friends and give it some more though.
DISCLAIMER: I AM NOT AN EXPERT
MY CRITICAL THEORY OF BEER and COMIC BOOK APPRECIATION
An old Ancient person once said “You must try everything once to discover what you want to try again.”