I found this in Peckhams, from Crabbies, the old-established Glasgow makers of ginger wine (Scottish Nationalists, and others who like to get uptight about these things, may be interested to know that the thistle-bearing packaging was created by a design agency in Leeds). Well done for putting it in a full half-litre bottle too.
I open the chunky glass bottle, and the first impression is ... not true to style. This is actually ginger ale! It's clear and bright, and the dark golden colour has nothing in common with cloudy grey ginger beer.
Heavily carbonated, it's quite clearly a soft drink led astray, not a descendent of traditional ginger beer, or even beer for that matter.
Very sweet. Ridiculously so. But it's pleasingly fiery. This is not tame old Schweppes — in the fieriness it can hold its own with leading representatives of the ginger beer milieu.
Because it's so sweet, the gingeriness is never harsh, There's also a lightly floral, spicy fragrance I can't quite put my finger on, but it reminds me of the legendary Austrian soda Almdudler.
Will I buy it again? Well, I didn't think I would, but I might do. This is an extremely successful take on ginger ale, and unique at the moment.
The only question is — what is the 4% alcohol actually for?