137. Daleside Morocco Ale

It’s a bank holiday here in the UK, which means a rare scheduled day off work for Threehundredbeers. It’s on occasions such as this that thoughts inevitably turn to beer, in particular the growing queue of bottles in the spare room.

This was a present from The Official Threehundredbeers Sister, who you may remember from such day trips as Burton-on-Trent. For a non-beer drinker, she’s remarkably good at finding these things, and it helps that she’s strategically located near to Beer Central, a great little beer shop on the new Moor Market in Sheffield.

Daleside Morocco Ale hails from Harrogate in Yorkshire and it’s a beer that I’ve never seen down here in London, so I was very pleased to get my hands on it.

Daleside Morocco Ale

It’s described as a “strong dark spiced and mysterious ale brewed to the secret ancient recipe held at Levens Hall for over 300 years”. It is apparently ideal as a dinner beer, but that won’t stop Threehundredbeers cracking it open in the middle of the afternoon.

Daleside Morocco Ale pours a very deep dark ruby red colour and there’s a nice layer of tan foam sat on the top. There’s a rich malty aroma packed with dates, raisins and fruitcake notes.

The beer has a big, malty and slightly sticky body full of rich bonfire toffee and black treacle flavours. I can imagine this one being particularly well suited to the winter months, but the fact that the sun is actually out doesn’t hurt at all.

It’s claimed that the recipe dates from the time of Elizabeth I, and while my tastebuds aren’t sufficiently well-tuned to detect exactly which spices or other ingredients are in there, ginger and nutmeg spring to mind. The Book mentions that meat was once part of the recipe, in order to sustain the yeast while the beer was matured for 21 years.

The Morocco Ale is now meat-free, in case that puts you off, and aged for a great deal less time. Still, I like this one. The richness means I probably couldn’t manage more than one but I’m very pleased to have tried what is a unique and very interesting beer.

Facts and Figures

Brewery: Daleside, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, England
Style: Beers made with Fruit, Spices, Herbs and Seeds
Strength: 5.5% ABV
Found at: Beer Central, The Moor Market, Sheffield, South Yorkshire
Serving: 500ml bottle

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