Brewed: Walthamstow, London
Strength: 4.5% ABV
Founded on the back of a hobby that turned into an obsession, Wild Card Brewery functions from its own site in Walthamstow, having opened at the beginning of 2014. Since launching, Wild Card has become renowned for producing no-nonsense, uncompromising beers with a four-strong core range inspired by playing cards. These include ‘Queen of Diamonds’ hoppy IPA, ‘King of Hearts’ blonde beer, ‘Ace of Spades’ London Porter, and ‘Jack of Clubs’ ruby ale.
Brewed with British Crystal malts and a blend of American hops, ‘Jack of Clubs’ is a clear amber, when poured, with a thin beige head and a relatively light body. A malt complexity is prominent on the nose, joined by further sweet notes of burnt toffee, molasses, nuts and back notes of spiced fruit. Some of this nuttiness continues on the palate, alongside flavours of biscuit, caramel, some ripe orange juice and black cherries – but what’s most noticeable is the balance of sweetness and bitterness, with each working in harmony. Ending with a slightly bitter, dry finish, ‘Jack of Clubs’ is by no means one of the most exciting beers on the market (or even from Wild Card Brewery), though it’s a pleasant, classic ruby ale.
Further information on Wild Card Brewery, as well as a list of stockists is available from wildcardbrewery.co.uk.
Photo: Erika Tambke