Wolf Brewery at Theberton Lion Beer Club

April's Beer Club* featured the Wolf Brewery, which was founded in 1996 on the old Gaymer's cider plant in Attleborough, Norfolk, by Wolfe Whitman. In 2005 the brewery was sold to the Edwards family who continue to run it today. In 2013 the brewery moved to a new site in the nearby village of Besthorpe, where they brew the times a week on a 10 barrel plant. Wolf prides itself on using locally sourced ingredients including Crisp malts, and water from their own bore hole.

The first beer of the evening was Wolf in Sheep's Clothing, a 3.7% mild, brewed with Fuggles and Goldings hops. It is a dark amber colour, rather light for a mild. The aroma is malt forward, as fits the style. The flavour starts with malty wholemeal bread and is followed by hedgerow fruits. Several beer club members picked this as their favourite beer of the evening. For me it was a solid 3.25 on Untappd.

Next up was Coyote, a 4.3% amber ale, which had won bronze and silver medals at the SIBA East Anglian Awards, and has been a finalist twice at the Champion Beer of Britain. The colour was a light amber and the head was loose and short lived. Considering its awards I found this beer to be slightly disappointing, although it was pleasant enough. I found little discernable malt characterin the flavour. I thought there was a hint of pine from the hops, rather than the citrus that is typical of Cascade hops. I rated it a respectable 3 on Untappd.

Our third beer was the 4.8% red ale, Granny Wouldn't Like It, which was Supreme Champion at the SIBA Silver Jubilee Championships in 2005. This was a rich chestnut colour with a thick, lasting head. The flavour was rich bitter-sweet hedgerow fruits on a solid malt base. Several beer club members remarked on what a strong beer it was, and how dangerous that makes it as it didn't taste its strength, showing that this is definitely a traditional cask kind of a club, rather than 'craft' oriented. For me, Granny Wouldn't Like It was just pipped into second place by the last beer of the evening. I gave it 3.5 on Untappd, but perhaps I should have gone a little higher.

The penultimate beer was Lupus Lupus, a 4.2% blonde ale featuring cascade hops. It was very pale, with a very loose and short-lived head. I couldn't detect much aroma at all. The malt flavour was bready, or maybe water biscuit, with a pleasant bitterness, but no discernible floral or citrus from the hops. I can see it being a refreshing summer beer, maybe a good gateway beer for a lager drinker. I gave it a 3 on Untappd and I might drink it again, depending on what else was available at the time. Everyone has different tastes though, and a couple of beer clubbers marked this up as their favourite beer of the night.

Finally we came to Sirius Dog Star, a 4.4% American red ale, which won double gold SIBA Eastern Region Awards 2017 and was Overall Champion Cask gold winner at the SIBA Nationa Awards last month. Sirius is a very dark red, almost black until it is held up to the light. It had a good lasting head and great lacings down the glass. The flavour is strongly of liqourice and coffee with a little red fruit sweetness. Previously, I had drunk this from the bottle and liked it well enough then. On cask it was a great beer and I was glad of the chance to have another one before we left the pub. I gave it 4 on Untappd.

Altogether I have now had 13 of the 51 beers that Wolf Brewery has listed on Untappd, and I've never rated the lower than a 3. I will definitely keep an eye open for their beers in future, although I think that I prefer their darker beers on the whole. If you should see them I would say that they are worth trying.

* The Theberton Lion holds its Beer Club on the first Monday of the month, unless that is a bank holiday, starting at 8.30. For £5 you get samples of five different beers, usually around 1/3 of a pint. Sometimes the beers come from one brewery, in which case there is sometimes a representative from the brewery. On other occasions they are sourced by Tom from different breweries. We score the beers, and Tom uses these scores to consider which beers he might get into the pub.


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