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County set

ruddles_thepub2I’ve been a fan of Ruddles County for many years, but unfortunately I haven’t had much opportunity to indulge.  It was traditionally brewed in Rutland, and although it was an occasional guest beer in a few pubs, I didn’t come across it too often.  Ruddles is now a part of Greene King, and it seems to get around a bit more, although I still find it easier to get hold of in bottles and cans than on draught (at least not a hand-pulled version), even though we have several Greene King pubs in our area – they seem to mainly stock IPA, Abbot and Old Speckled Hen.  I suppose that now it’s brewed by Greene King in Bury St. Edmunds, the County referred to in the name must now be Suffolk?

Anyway, County out of a bottle tastes pretty good, although I’m led to believe (by a wikipedia article, so read what you want into that) that the GK brew doesn’t use the same recipe as the original – but I think it’s a lovely amber beer, malty and hoppy smell with a sharp bitter taste and with a touch of fruity sweetness and a caramel toffee taste.  It styles itself as “proper country beer”, whatever that means, but it is good.   I recently tried a few cans of County.  Initially I was a bit disappointed with it – it seemed a bit flat and lifeless – but after a while it began to grow on me, and the lack of gas became a benefit rather than a drawback.

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