23 May 2020

Aunt Bessie’s Jam Roly Poly - Jam & Custard Pale Ale (Northern Monk) By @SpectreUK

On Wednesday I tried and was somewhat surprised to enjoy Aunt Bessie's Sunday Dinner, Roast Dinner Brown Ale. I shouldn't say "surprised", but the brown ale was brewed with Aunt Bessie's Yorkshire Puddings and her Roast Potatoes after all. Having said that I have eaten plenty of both in previous Sunday Dinner's in the past, I just hadn't had them brewed in a brown ale before.

Presumably this Aunt Bessie's Jam Roly Poly, Jam & Custard Pale Ale, produced by the same Northern Monk Brew Company, is for a liquid pudding after you've drunk the Roast Dinner Brown Ale. I only have one beer after a weights session due to still counting calories and trying to stay slim, so I'm having this Jam & Custard Pale Ale today instead.

I can't recall ever eating a Jam Roly Poly before. I'm sure I have when I was very young, however I do like jam tarts with custard and also jam sponge with custard. I haven't had either of those for a long while either though. This Jam Roly Poly, Jam & Custard Pale Ale, was made with malted barley, wheat, oats, maltodextrin, lactose, plum, apricot, strawberries, custard, hops and yeast. At 5.7% volume this should be quite a strong and possibly odd tasting pale ale. Apparently Jam Roly Poly was always on the school dinner menu, but I always had a packed lunch. I'm suspecting that kids can't take one of these cans as a liquid lunch instead for when it's safe enough for them to go back to school though!

On opening the can I was at first taken aback by the sharp herbal hop aroma, and then came the jam. I could predominantly smell strawberries and apricots, some plum and then a little creamy custard right at the end. This jam and custard smell made me think of a good pudding that I'm sure I'd enjoy - I'm not sure about it in a beer though! There was also some sweetness from the pale malt and a little wheat at the back of the aroma. This jumble of smells made me wonder what this beer could possibly taste like, almost not enough to actually taste it though!

Okay, so I bit the bullet and took a swig. It was actually bizarrely good. Believe me when I say that I really didn't want to like this beer. I'd certainly avoided it for long enough. Quite frankly it sounds like a ridiculous idea thought up by someone who has too much time on their hands, with hops and malted barley to waste. And yet… this beer does tasty really good. It's probably the least likely and yet most flavoursome pudding beer I've ever drunk. Here's the thing; I'm so used to pudding beers having chocolate malt in them that I'm blinkered to trying something new.

This Jam & Custard Pale Ale has a kick from the bitter herbal hops to start with that's pounced on by the sweet and fruity jam, which is then lovingly creamily comforted by the custard, and with a sweet malty goodness into the aftertaste. This Aunt Bessie's Jam Roly Poly, Jam & Custard Pale Ale, is revolutionary, it's ingenious, it's been made by super brewers from the land of dreams and make-believe. They possibly need less time on their hands to come up with something else bizarre. Although they need to make some more of these Jam & Custard Pale Ales first though. I certainly need to drink some more. More liquid puddings from now on please!

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