Hilden Beer Fest 2012

Its that time of year again, the August Bank Holiday weekend is fast approaching which means the Hilden Brewery are hosting their annual beer festival. Last year's was a great success and if the beer line-up is anything to go by, this years will be no different. * 

I can also reveal that Hilden will be previewing their new bottle range over the weekend. All of the beers have been seen as cask versions but this is the first time they've gone into bottle. Fantastic bold new branding and logo shows Hilden have really upped their game to compete with the newer brewers both here and over the water.

Without further ado; here are the brews, along with Hilden's own tasting notes. Please bear in mind this is not the finished list and is of course subject to change on delivery. There will also be ciders from Mac's and DJs for those of a more fruity bent.

Osset Hopmonster (5%)
Strong Hoppy Ale. A strong, heavily hopped and robust IPA. Moderate bitterness, but intense aroma from new-season New Zealand Nelson Sauvin hops. This unique variety imparts a white wine fruitiness.

Look: Straw in colour
Taste: Smooth, malty and sweet on the palate with a refreshing citrus kick and refined hop after taste.
Smell: Hoppy & malty

A pale, full bodied bitter with a fresh gentle nose, taken over by a smooth hop and citrus finish making this ale very drinkable.

  This award winning golden beer has good bitterness levels, with a fresh citrus and hop aroma.  A hoppy flavour throughout with a well hopped clean, dry finish.   A CAMRA Champion Beer of Britain Finalist in 2004. 

Titanic White Star (ABV 4.8%)
A light refreshing distinctively hoppy beer with a freshness that belies its strength, so easy to drink it will fool all but the crustiest of sea dogs.

From the very first draught, this pale hoppy ale will slake your thirst. A fusion of Maris Otter malts and Pilot and Fuggles hops explode on the palate as biscuit and juicy fruit flavours give way to citrus and berry hops, good hop aroma and hoppy after taste. A superb summer beer

Golden Ale "A refreshing honey toned, golden ale" Originally brewed in summer 2009 as Summer Gold, it was subsequently selected by J.D. Wetherspoon’s to feature in their April 2010 Beer Festival when the name was changed to Brigantia. It is a honey toned, refreshing, hoppy, golden ale with gorgeous aromas of tropical fruit and grapefruit sharpness offset by hints of melon and pineapple; the result of large quantities of German, Brewers Gold hops.

Our signature beer - a pale bitter with a citrus fruit aroma and hoppy citrus finish. 

Created shortly after the brewery moved site to a tennis club pavilion, this pale ale has a big fruity flavour with a peppery hoppiness and a dry, bitter yet fruity finish. 

Hilden Brewery's take on a wheat beer brewed to commemorate the inventor of the 'Belfast Penny Bap', Bernard 'Barney' Hughes(1808-1878). Made from wheat and barley, cardamom, corriander and a dash of black pepper, this spicy tipple is delicious and wont 'stick to your belly like lead'

A wholly natural blonde beer with a clean and refreshing character derived from the use of lager malt along with a small proportion of maize. This mixture of continental and native varieties of late and early addition hops pleases both the nasal senses and the taste buds.

A rich warming premium beer. A classic red Irish ale with a full bodied flavour.

Hilden Halt (6.1%)
A premium traditional Irish red ale with a malty, mild hop flavour. This special reserve derives its name from the train line that used to service the local linen mill.

Hilden Twisted Hop (4.7%)
An Irish pale ale. It has a medium-bodied character and good bitterness, complementing the full hop flavour which lingers on the palate and in the aroma.

College Green (Hilden) Headless Dog (4.2%)
A bright amber ale from our College Green range of beers, with an initially smooth taste followed by a hint of Munich malt coming through from the grist. This is complimented by the stronger refreshing taste from this well hopped beer, named after the unusual mural opposite the front door of the brewery.

Hilden Scullion'sIrish (4.6%)
A bright amber ale, smooth initially with a slight taste of honey which is balanced by a long dry after taste which lingers on the palate

Metalman Pale Ale (4.3%)
American style pale ale, dark gold in colour with a delicate white head. Citrus and floral aromas lead into hop flavours characterised by grapefruit and mandarin produced by American hops. A dry bitter finish makes this an eminently enjoyable and refreshing beer.

Metalman Chameleon Ginger (4.5%)
A light summer ale with a ginger twist! A lightly hopped beer, this is an easy drinking summer thirst quencher with subtle ginger flavours and a dry finish. Perfect for a warm sunny day (if we were lucky enough to get such a thing).

ABV 4.3%
A malt driven Irish style red ale balance by the hop varieties Fuggles and East Kent Goulding

ABV 3.9%
This is a brilliant light and hoppy seasonal beer, carefully brewed using the transatlantic pairing of the UK’s Brambling Cross and Washington State’s own Chinook hops.
ABV 3.8%
Peppery hop in the mouth with a long, bitter finish. A classic well-hopped and beautifully balanced beer with a deeply satisfying and refreshing taste that is followed by a distinctively dry and long bitter finish. Best enjoyed in true Black Sheep style, through a rich, creamy head.

ABV 3.7%
A traditional English bitter with the addition of single varietal hops to give a robust bitterness and a strong hop finish.

ABV 4.2%
Roasted barley, rolled oats, chocolate & black malts combine to produce our Traditional Irish Stout brimming with flavour. The gentle coffee aroma is balanced wonderfully by rich hop flavours.

ABV 4.5%
Seasonal. Pale coloured, well balanced beer using English and Polish hops.

ABV 4.2%
This is a very well built beer that starts with a delicate hoppy and fresh floral aroma. The flavour is fruity, first you notice the grapefruit and then a good dash of lemon comes through. At the end there is a rounded taste of bitter hops. Easy drinking and very moreish.

ABV 3.8%
A golden beer whose aroma is dominated by hops that give characteristic citrus notes. Hops and fruit on the palate are balanced by malt and a bitter base. Dry hoppy finish with soft fruit flavours.

ABV 3.7%
New Zealand hops deliver fragrant aromatic floral notes counterpointed with a mouth of subtle bitterness. Turner would marvel in its composition!

ABV 5%
Straw coloured beer, hoppy aroma with a hint of grainyness. The finish is clean and refreshing.

Rat - Dirty Rat (3.5%)
A velvetty dark brown mild. Low bitterness with a sweet malty finish from a blend of three malt. The delicate hop aroma is not overpowering.

*Alright, there's nothing with the WOW factor perhaps but plenty of new brews to try. With additional beers the list is now looking pretty decent.

EDIT: Renamed beers (see comments) and more beers added 21/8/12.

26/8/12 Updated with actual beers available.


  1. Flatcap beers are Bank Top

  2. Nice one. Perhaps this year I will actually make a list of things to try before I get there... I tend to just wing these things and then get recommendations when there.

  3. That's sometimes best with session cask anyway. Is suggest trying ossett and acorn on past performance.

  4. This is great -- thanks Steve!

    Just seven ticks and I'm free to drink what I want!