Despite not really having any summer to speak of there’s no doubting that autumn is now upon us. The leaves are turning all of those beautiful russet hues and – perhaps less wonderful – the nights are fair drawing in. There has been a slight shift as far as the beers that are coming in are concerned too, with a definite shift towards darker styles for the darker nights ahead. If those aren’t for you, fear not! I’ll still attempt to be as varied as I can and hopefully offer something for everyone.

Beerbliotek I Don't Want To Change the World


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I was drawn to this one both for my previously mentioned fondness for the brewery and for the titular Billy Bragg gag, this is a New England style IPA and the name comes from the chorus to Bragg’s ‘A New England’ – made famous by Kirsty McColl – which contains one of my favourite lines in any song: ‘It's wrong to wish on space hardware’… perhaps you need to know the rest of the words to really appreciate it yourself. Anyway, I digress (as I so often do), what about the beer? A combination of creamy cereal and bright citrus fruit on the nose, with more citrus on the palate joined by a juicy tropical tang and finishing with a biting bitter floral note.

Wylam Attracting Humans


Staying in Pale Ale/IPA territory this is definitely my pick of that style this week, with the malt getting almost equal billing to the hops, something sadly lacking in many modern pales. There are oats in alongside the barley here and you can definitely tell that from both the aroma and the excellent body. Alongside those oats you get plenty of tropical fruit and blood orange marmalade on the nose with more of the same in the flavour with added malt character and a little grassy bitterness. Really well balanced throughout and super smooth, I found this very attractive indeed.

Flying Dog Dogtoberfest


As it’s the start of October I thought I would go wild and try some Oktoberfest beers, there may be more to come in the following weeks but I made a start with this American take on the classic German Marzen. Very easy drinking, this has all of the caramel malt character that you would expect of the style alongside some dried fruit notes, a little extra spice and an earthy hop bite on the finish that stops it from coming across as too sweet.

Wild Beer Co. Rooting Around: Autumn


The latest in Wild Beer’s seasonal series using foraged ingredients is a delicious – if less than fashionable - brown ale with added fig leaves, fig branches and indeed figs. There’s a sharp fruitiness on the nose alongside toasted coconut and some sweet spice. Warming on the palate without being boozy, this is sweet with figgy goodness, backed up by more of that coconut and the sort of spice that I expect in the pumpkin beers that start to arrive around Halloween. A real cracker.

Mad Hatter Raspberry Tipple


Raspberry and stout is a match made in heaven as far as I’m concerned and this one from Liverpool’s Mad Hatter doesn’t disappoint. No great subtlety here, this is just a delicious (and surprisingly dry) silky smooth mouthful of chocolate and raspberry jam, with the bitter roast notes balancing out the fruity sweetness. You might have to fight me for these.