Day 23 and a Siren call of Summer


There’s still no concordance with The ‘official’ Beer Hawk tasting video, the team today are opening a bottle of Dry Hopped Anchor Steam Beer, the bottle I got on Day 19, instead of Two Roads Espressway stout. I’ve got a hopeful eye on the larger flap to Day 24 of the Advent Calendar, and I’m dreaming of it being a pint bottle of dark beer. I’d be quite happy with a bottle of the Two Roads stout. Maybe the packers in the warehouse just got mixed up? We’ll see.

Normally, I might get all worked up about a Siren beer, this one just didn’t get my pulse racing. It wasn’t the fact that it was a 2.8% QIPA (Quarter), more the fact that the Siren web site says that Half Mast is a seasonal special that was brewed between May and October 2015. Thankfully a scan of the bottle shows a BBD of July 2017, which is acceptable. Phew … I wouldn’t have wanted a jaded, faded bottle of low ABV un-hoppiness by now. They must have brewed it again this year, it’s actually billed as the perfect summer time drink in the Siren online shop (out of stock). Get your web site updated Siren! Thing is, I’m not sure that I want a bottle of ‘the perfect summertime drink’ in a winter Advent Calendar Beer Hawk?

So, is this beer a fine example of the brewers art, flavour and balance in a low ABV beer? A brief foamy head soon disappears from the top of this hazy pale golden beer. The aroma is ripe fruits, maybe pineapple? Pineapples, grapefruit and tropical fruits continue on the palate and it finishes with quite a sharp, dry bitterness. Refreshing, tongue tinglingly zesty. I wish I was sat outside in the garden and the sun was cracking the flags. Unfortunately we’ve got the back end of storm Barbara and it just doesn’t feel right drinking this in front of a roaring fire.

I asked Mrs C what she thought? ‘That’s nice, refreshing, but it’s just lacking something?’ I then told her it was only 2.8% ABV, which met with the response, ‘That’s a cheat!’ She meant on the Beer Hawk  cost of the case front here and not the brewer. However, £2.25 online from Siren and £2.39 from Beer Hawk, so it’s not the cheapest option in the case.

I thought this was an impressive effort in the flavour stakes at 2.8% ABV. Well done Siren, I would expect no less.

Verdict: I didn’t expect a Summer beer in my case, it was nice to try it, but I think this is a bottle of old stock they wanted to get rid of?

2 replies »

  1. There was a bot of a fad for these low abv ales a couple of years back (Small and Mighty was another one I remember).

    Half Mast is one I’ve tried, but on a roasting hot day in Oxford, after traipsing around the city all morning. It’s absolutely perfect for that kind of day, when anything with a massive abv would be too much, but you still want something with some flavour. I think, at the time, Siren were billing it as a “Quarter IPA” – good stuff.


    • I reckon the situation you describe is the perfect scenario for enjoying this refreshing beer. All (nearly) the flavour without the alcohol. Sort of shores up the theory that there is (and should be) a beer for every occasion.

      Liked by 1 person

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