Drop Bear Beers are doing a great job of cranking out the AF beers from their base in South Wales, and as should be evident from the last two beers I’ve reviewed from them, I’m a fan! And at time of writing their Tropical IPA has just picked up the ‘Best No & Low IPA’ award at the 2020 imbibe.com awards. I thought this was packed with hoppy goodness, but not overloaded as some NA IPAs are (I’m looking at you Nanny State).
However today we’re tasting their Yuzu Pale Ale, which I’m hoping holds up to their usual standard. The Yuzu is an Asian citrus fruit, that resembles an easy peel orange that has been left in the fruit bowl on it’s own for too long. Looks aside, the Yuzu is a popular flavouring in many foodstuffs, from sauces and snacks to tea and liquor. Flavour-wise I’d describe it as a combination of many citrus fruits in one, a grapefruit-orange fragrance mix with lemon sourness. These flavours tend to go well with beer, though I’m not usually a fan of receiving my pint with half an orange floating in it. Have Drop Bear got the balance right when mixing Yuzu with a hoppy pale ale?
Pouring we get a golden amber liquid, with a fair head, though this doesn’t stay around as long as it did with the IPA. I was expecting the nose to be strongly citrus, but to my surprise I was met with the aromas of a wheat beer on first sniff. There is citrus there in the background, but the banana fragrance of a weissbier is what I first homed in on with my olfactories. There is also a toffee scent too, and something maybe akin to a ginger-nut biscuit.
There is an initial sweetness upon tasting, but this is soon covered up by bitterness from both the hops and the Yuzu. The tastes are not harsh, and the hops and fruit bounce off each other to create a pleasing harmony. The sweetness makes it’s appearance again on subsequent sips. Not as hoppy or tropical as Drop Bear’s Tropical IPA, but certainly flavoursome and a decent enough body to it.
The calorie count and sugar content is a tad higher than other similar pale ales, but I suspect this comes from the Yuzu concentrate. This is a great addition to Drop Bear’s product line, and one that I’m sure will grace my fridge in the future. Also of note is that this beer is classed as both gluten-free and vegan friendly – something it has in common with rest of Drop Bear’s range, and is a piece of data that I should probably include at the end of future AF beer reviews.
Nutritional Information (per 100ml)
0.5% alcohol by volume
30.1 calories energy
(taken from the side of the bottle)
Water, Malted Barley, Wheat, Oats, Hops, Yeast, Yuzu Extract
Drop Bear Non-Alcoholic Yuzu Pale Ale Review
Well balanced citus and hop flavours make this pale ale slip down easily.