Beer Review – 1698 Kentish Strong Ale, Shepherd Neame

When my Dad takes the time to call me up and recommend me a beer, that’s usually a sign it’s going to be pretty good. When the beer in question turns out to be 6.5% alcohol, that’s usually a sign that I’ll struggle to get out of bed the following morning.

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Yes, I am proud of my Pig’s Ear glass

The 1698 is a rich auburn in colour with a thick, frothy, off-white head. It smells strongly of malt, with hints of dark fruit – plums, perhaps.

It’s very warming in the mouth. It’s a bit like Christmas cake – sweet, fruity, and with a slight alcoholic edge towards the end like brandy-soaked sultanas. The dark, plummy aromas are more evident in the taste profile. It’s not fizzy, but the bubbles that are there give this beer a thick, satisfying feeling in the mouth.

Overall, the 1698 is a cracking beer. I’d have one more, and another after that if I thought I could handle it. 4/5

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