Given the nature of the place he runs, our Overboss can be a surprisingly… incurious drinker, sometimes. He’s very-much fond of what he’s fond of (i.e., American Pale Ale), and doesn’t seem to much wander into other fields. But hey, that does leave me (as resident Beer Nerd) with a fairly steady stream of samples to try, so no complaints.
Harrington’s make a broad range of beers, and they make them very well. They don’t often make anything whacked-out and loopy, preferring instead to make simpler, easy-drinking instances of various styles. We were a little weirded-out by the tasting note’s inclusion of a reference to “toffee” flavours, since that’s eerily close to a classic brewing fault — but I didn’t really think such was in there, anyway, except perhaps as a slightly growing sweetness in a beer that is generally crisp and light, with a cidery / winey feel to it. As much as I enjoy some crazypants in my beer sometimes, I also have a lot of time for things like this, and like Mussel Inn’s Golden Goose: simple, clean, quaffable lagers that should be rights be much more popular than the oddly-rank somehow-leading commercial examples.
Verbatim: Harrington’s ‘Saddleback’ Lager 20/9/10 4% sample that Col. didn’t want. 500ml. We were weirded out by the ‘toffee’ note on the label; sounds oddly like a fault. But no matter, I don’t really think it’s in there. More crisp and light, with that borderline cidery / winey feel. Very slight build into a sweetness, maybe. But this happily joins the likes of Golden Goose and such; simple, clean + quaffable