Beer review — Crown Ambassador 2009 and Thomas Hardy

Crown Ambassador 2009 Reserve Lager 750ml $69.99
You can sense Crown Ambassador’s luxurious flavours as soon as you see its shimmering, burnished-bronze/caramel colour – an impression that grows as you sniff the rich, high-toned fruit and sweet underlying caramel/malt sweetness. The palate is complex and creamy textured, the opulent malt and alcohol offset by delicious hops bitterness.

Thomas Hardy’s Ale 250ml $14.90
Another Thomas Hardy, in The Trumpet-Major, penned a note apt for this 11.7% alcohol, bottle conditioned ale: “It was of the most beautiful colour that the eye of an artist in beer could desire; full in body yet brisk as a volcano; piquant yet without a twang; luminous as an autumn sunset.”