Continuing from where I left off, after our short wander into the Peak District, we weren’t really interested in going very far from the house that evening. Fortunately, since we were in Sheffield, it turned out an awesome pub would always be just around the corner and as luck would have it, we were staying only a short walk away from the Hallamshire. The Hallamshire is a beautifully refurbished pub which brings the traditional friendly local pub up to date with elegance and flair. The walls are covered with tasteful flocked wallpaper and ‘Victorian’ portraits (of debatable authenticity) and the lighting is pretty spot-on. It’s not just the decor you visit a pub for though. As part of the Thornebridge family, the bar is well stocked with a selection of their permanent ales alongside a few more special ones. Don’t worry if you’re not much of a beer fan since you’ll be thoughtfully catered for with a tap permanently devoted to Becks Vier.
As Dark Star devotee, I made a bee-line for their exotically-titled Thornebridge collaboration, Puja (6.7%ABV). Named after a Hindu ritual where an offering is made to a deity, Puja is an IPA with a Jasmine twist. Would I offer this up though? Only to one of my very favorites but I’d rather drink it. It looks pretty much like an average IPA, light golden in color with a stark, dense, creamy white head. The aroma is sweet and hoppy but there’s also a lovely delicate whiff of jasmine. It’s got a fairly bitter flavour but not as hoppy as expected. Instead, it’s lively and sweet with a tangy finish like after eating lemon sherbert. Bizarrly though, as thirst-quenching as it is, it feels thicker in the mouth than it should. The addition of jasmine gives it an added dimension of yumminess. It reminds me of my favorite tea – far too drinkable for it’s strength!
Ignoring the April showers outside, my next pint was another light, summery affair. Wye, those crazy chaps only went and took a pale ale and chucked some whopping chunks of Cucumber in. Call the Queen – Wye (4.7%ABV) could possibly be a contender for official beer of the Jubillee! Why have cucumber sarnies when you could drink them (cereals, cucumber, same thing right?). I had a mixed initial reaction to this one – there’s really not much aroma to speak of so the pure hit of cucumber was a bit of a surprise. It did grow on me as I got further to the bottom of the glass though. It’s pretty hydrating and almost tastes healthy – could I count this in my five-a-day? Maybe. I still had the cucumber aftertaste the next morning so there must be quite a bit in there!