In doing research on the internet, I’d come across Timothy Taylor’s Landlord and became curious. English beers have gotten a bad rap in America because of their low alcohol and often bland flavor profile. I think a lot of American beer drinkers had written England off as a country with a once proud brewing tradition that had let it slip into a world of Mass Market blandness. However, this isn’t necessarily true anymore.
Such groups as Camra, CAMpaign for Real Ale, have been working since the late 1970’s to preserve, protect and promote England’s traditional cask ales and traditional pub life. I also think a great deal of the problem is the styles themselves. English bitters and milds are very low in alcohol which means they don’t travel well. Additionally, most beers are best when they’re fresh, and this is even more true for English beers. However, some English gems do make go the US in good shape. Timothy Taylor’s Landlord is one of those.
Timothy Taylor & Co was founded in 1858 in Keighley, West Yorkshire and is still a family run business today. Their most famous beer is called Landlord. It’s a “strong” pale ale that is considered to be one of the most award winning beers in England. Finally, thanks to their importer, Shelton Bros., this beer is now available in the United States for the first time.
Appearance: Coppery Orange with an off-white head. Great retention.
Aroma: A slight malty earthiness. Solid biscuit notes with slight caramel sweetness in the nose. The hop aromas are spicy and earthy with touches of pine and citrus.
Taste: This beer is all about balance. The malt and hops come together in harmony and are complimented by a nice level of carbonation created by proper bottle conditioning. This beer has a wonderful mouthfeel with a touch of balancing acidity.
Overall Impression: Landlord is a great example of a traditional English pale ale. I can only imagine how fresh and wonderful it tastes fresh from a cask drawn engine. If you see this bottle, make sure it’s fresh and if so, buy it. Don’t expect it to “compete” with an American Pale ale. This beer is about balance and subtlety. Enjoy it without pinning your expectations on a hoppy quaffer, and you’ll really enjoy this beer. This is a very refreshing and drinkable beer. Thankfully, the brewery packaged the beer in a brown bottle instead of the silly clear bottles that allow the beer to be quickly ruined by light.
Availability: Nationally in bigger cities and better beer stores.