Adnams were nice enough to send me a bottle of their new Spindrift beer, which comes in a distinctive – some might say lurid – blue bottle with graphics that, while not really to my taste, certainly depart from the norm of British beer labelling.
People have argued that the blue bottle would allow the beer to get lightstruck. I don't notice any of that, but I did keep the beer in the fridge since I got it, and I think the obsession some people have with "skunking" is bogus anyway.
On opening the bottle, there are scents of perfumey flowers and sweeties; beyond that, the aroma is reminiscent – I don't know exactly why – of some of the lighter Belgian beers.
There's not much hop flavour – you almost have to hunt for it on your palate after swallowing – but there is vanilla, wood and mint and a very dry finish. I can't avoid the thought that someone has told the brewer "Make a beer that wine drinkers will like".
Perhaps they will, and if that's the aim it's a good attempt at a less "beery" beer. For me, though, it's too much of a halfway house, taking me out of my mild-and-bitter frame of reference and yet not quite different enough to be exciting. But it's easy drinking and I bet plenty of people will love it.