Saturday, June 9, 2012

Nero's 1st Century Double Dark Malt Ale Review

Nero's 1st Century Double Dark Malt Ale Review

Welcome to my first official beer review, cheers! Today's review centers around a more obscure beer, Nero's 1st Century Double Dark Malt Ale.  This is an 8% alcohol ale that sells for about two to four dollars a bottle. I purchased it at Trader Joes.  Ale's are hit and miss beers for me, typically I'm not a big fan of the aggressive Ale's with bitter aftertastes, yet I'll never turn one down for a taste test.  Nero's 1st Century Ale is a beer bottled in a dark glass swingtop style bottle (my favorite, allows for partial consumption) and is brewed in Italy and imported by Plume Ridge in Claremont, California.  Since this beer isn't overly expensive, I didn't have high expectations. I drank this beer at typical fridge temp, and room temp to get the wide variety of flavor it will offer. Read more...

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Smell:  Cold, the Nero's smelled sweet and malty, almost with a majority of Molasses.  As it warmed up to room temperature, the aroma intensified adding some plum and overripe banana overtones- yet they were pretty faint. A pleasantly smelling beer, although not complex by any means. Above average aroma but I've smelled much better.

Taste: Cold, the Nero's was a refreshing malty experience with very little hop overtone, and no dry bitter Ale aftertaste. This is an ale? It starts off flavorful but mid way and finishing this beer doesn't seem to live up to its label or bottling. One could guzzle it just as easily as a an ice chest beer at a social outdoor gathering. As it warmed up, taste increased slightly but honestly this beer tasted better/finished better the colder it was. In terms being a "premium" beer, this isn't the direction of temperature you want it to taste better at. Carmelly, and light, with a slightly dry scratchiness at the end that says "I really am an Ale, I promise", but barely so.

Bottom Line: Is this a beer I'd naturally seek out to buy in my normal rotation? Probably not. However, it is a beer I wouldn't turn down if someone offered it to me at a social gathering, or order at a restaurant/bar/etc. if I saw it on a list of average beers. It's a good beer overall but nothing special that stands out ranking as one of the best. The head fades quickly and doesn't really get above two fingers wide with a correct pour. The good side is that if you want to feel good, its 8% and one should get you there no problemo.

The bottle will make a great M&M jar at home or work, or a great bottle to save if you brew your own goods. Overall certainly not a waste of money, but definitely not one of the top 10% beers on the market. I shall continue to seek out one that will earn my best reward.


Carl Garrard

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