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Beer Styles

More Resources: Tasting Sheet Study Guide

English-Style Old Ale

A distinctive quality of these ales is that their yeast undergoes an aging process (often for years) in bulk storage or through bottle conditioning, which contributes to a rich, wine-like and often sweet oxidation character. Old ales are copper-red to very dark in color. Complex estery character may emerge.

Category: Strong Ales

Food Pairings

  • Roast Beef and Lamb
  • Double Gloucester
  • Spiced Plum Walnut Tart

Glassware & Serving Temperature

Snifter
40-45 °F

Commercial Examples

Commercial Examples

Appearance

Color

Copper-Red to Very Dark

Clarity

Opaque

Carbonation (Visual)

Slow to Medium Rising Bubbles

Flavor/Aroma

Alcohol

Noticeable to Hot

Hop

Hop aroma and flavor are not perceived to medium. Hop bitterness is minimal but evident.

Malt

A malty and sometimes caramel-like sweetness may be evident.

Esters

Fruit (Varies)

Phenols

Not common to style.

Fermentation By-Products

Diacetyl is acceptable at very low levels.

Sensations

Body

Moderate to Mouth-Coating

Carbonation

Low to Medium

Finish Length

Long

Attenuation

Medium

Ingredients

Hops

Kent Goldings

Malt

Pale, Chocolate, Black Patent

Water

Varies

Yeast

Ale, Brettanomyces possible

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