T.E.A. (Traditional English Ale) - Hog's Back Brewery

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T.E.A. (Traditional English Ale)T.E.A. (Traditional English Ale)

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70 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 70
Reviews: 45
rAvg: 3.43
pDev: 12.83%
Wants: 0
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hog's Back Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: proc on 08-10-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 70 | Reviews: 45
Reviews by allergictomacros:
Photo of allergictomacros
3.3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Slightly hazed amber with a light head of off white foam.

S - Nose has some faint fruit, caramel and light toasted grain.

T - Apple-y with a solid bitterness in the back end. Otherwise, kind of light in flavour. Maybe a hint of caramel.

M - Light with a touch of slickness.

D - OK drinker, but nothing special.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Billolick
3.3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Mid sized bottle, with freshness dating. The bottle was brought back from England by my parents, so I cant guarantee the best handling, untill it got into my hands. Anyway, this one poured a dull light brown, with uninspiring white head, very low carbonation. Light bodied, light amount of flavor. Pretty dull stuff. Disappointing is the operative word. I'm sure this stuff is lovely on cask in a quant Brit pub, what I got out of the bottle was so so at best.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.55/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This one squeaked into the LCBO in downtown Waterloo. With CAMRA, "bottle conditioned" and a pig on the bottle, I figured I was in for a treat.

Poured slowly into a nonic glass. Not much detectable sediment (nowhere near as much as Coopers, for example), but it's there. Copper-amber in colour, with a thin ring of head. Fairly typical for the style.

The nose is mild, with tea leaves and malt leading the pack.

I'm beginning to see why the beer is called "T.E.A.", because that's the dominant flavour here. A bit of toffee, some malts, but mostly tea leaves. Very smooth, however, so it would be great for a session.

Thin carbonation, slightly oily. Not the greatest.

Though it claims to be the "Champion Beer of Britain, I'm not sure what all the fuss is about. It's a pretty standard EPA, really. Not terribly complex, but smooth and easy to drink. Given the low ABV, it would actually pretty good for a session drinker.

Photo of racer2k
3.3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured bottle in to a pint glass

A: a nice reddish-brown beer with virtually no head or lacing. Beer is somewhat cloudy in the glass with good carbonation.

S: Mild hops, sweet malt and a bit spicy with some earthy overtones.

T: A mild ale that is flavorful but not overpowering. There is a good balance of forward European hops and back end sweet malt flavor.

M: Creamy moderately carbonated mouth feel with a tangy sticky feel to the beer.

D: Very drinkable session beer and one that stands out in the rather vanilla flavored British beer offerings.

Photo of mintjellie
3.2/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear copper, with the lions share of sediment remaining at the bottom of the bottle. It's head is thin and poorly retentive. There's no lace to speak of. I left a little bit of beer in the bottle just in case I felt like rousing it up, and I'm glad I did. This doesn't have a whole lot of character to it, but drinking it hazy does improve it a little bit. I'm probably doing it wrong, but I like what I like.

It isn't very aromatic. It has a light biscuit aroma with faint earthy and floral notes. Mild toasty bread flavour with a leafy, tea-like finish. It has a very simple flavour to it, but that flavour starts to pop a bit as it gets closer to room temperature. It feels very light and smooth, with very low carbonation. In fact, it's almost flat. Thats not a complaint. I think mouthfeel is the best thing this beer has going for it. It's a decent and easy drinking pale ale, and I think it's nice to be able to try a bottle conditioned example. I just don't think it's an exceptionally good beer.

Photo of Sammy
3.12/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A slight brown colour to it. No lasting head. A tad of hop aroma, and an understated bitter taste. Very understated taste overall, and a tad light mouthfeel. Drinkable, but not very. Little carbonation, its somewhat cask like. Bit I would not go out of the way to have this on cask.

Photo of CanuckRover
3.19/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Agressive pour, little head. Looks like a cask ale, that's promising.

Not much at all on the nose, some slightly metallic malt.

... Not much in the flavour either. Light caramel malt. Agree with the commentator below, a tea character... iced tea. Very subtle bitterness at the back of the mouth.

Nice bottle conditioned mouthfeel, but doesn't have the flavour to back it up, so it just comes across as thin.

Frankly, I can't say it's that much better than your average Canadian macro-ale. Rather disappointing.

Photo of sfprint
2.95/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: amber/crimson but transparent, weak soda carbonation, and basically no head.
S: mixed fruits, fruit leather, but very weak. Fruity malt and a bit sour
T: Mild, a hair bitter, like a weak amber ale.
M: Pretty light, pretty much no carbonation.
O: A fairly ordinary English ale. Boring but fine.

Photo of jbonapar
3.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a honey gold with a thick, but small head. Minimal smell, no really overpowering or dominant smell.

Taste is light and bitter, slight malt with a hop-tartness. Slight apple and fruits. Mouthfeel is warm, slightly malty.

A nice beer, refreshing, not overpowering and certainly not unique. But, easy to drink and would recommend on a nice summer evening.

Photo of Reinheitsgebot71
3.1/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The highly carbonated amber body is capped by a disappointingly off white small head with low retention.

High effervescent brings ester scents of apple and wet leaves straight to the nose. Hoppy resinous note is backed by the smell of dandelion greens.

Very bitter up front in an unpleasing harsh alkaline way not helped slight note of what best reminds me of chlorine. The harsh hop flavours begin to subside as the beer warms with some flowery notes coming into effect. Biscuit malt balances out the hop power further down the line as well.

The mouth feel is light and biting from the carbonation.

Overall this beer was a bit of a letdown.

Photo of BlackHaddock
4/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown 500ml bottle conditioned beer, best before late March 2009, drank mid-March 2008.

Poured once, in a single pour, into a straight sided pint sleeve glass.

A lovely terracotta colour, on top sat a light biege head which thinned very quickly. The body was clear with very little carbonisation, hardly a bubble rising up through the beer at all.

Sweetish aroma, toffee and malted biscuits come to mind.

The taste is very moreish, very drinkable. Very simular flavours to the aroma in fact.

Well balanced beer and easy to drink. A long way from watery, but this isn't a heavy viscous beer either, just a good one.

Photo of Birdy69
4.44/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Perfect balance of hops and malt. One of the tastiest easiest drink out there. And from my most local brewery so it's a keeper for me

Photo of uno99
3.16/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

A: Well the attractive bottle sure seduced me when I was in the liquor store, and there was also only one left on the self so that sealed the deal there. pours an intresting toffee colour. quite murkey thanks to the secondary fermentation.

S: being so strapped for cash lately I havent had a beer in a few weeks (unless you count macros) so I was quite giddy when I first took a whiff of this. However, as I came to my "sences" I realized this is pretty average. I do like the hop charecter, but again is pretty par for the course.

T: First thing I notice is the dissapointing mouthfeel - I think it really lets this beers flavour fall flat. let it roll to the back of your mouth however, and you do get a nice and classic hop pang.

M: Thin and watery. This is a beer that would clearly be better on tap or cask.

D: Nothing "wrong" with this beer - it might even be a good session ale if there isnt much choice at your local. However, there is no reason IMO to choose this over a St. Peters, or a Sam Smiths at your liquor store.

Photo of DaveFL1976
3.63/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice amber colour with a chunky, fluffy white head that settled down to a thin skim while leaving behind lots of sticky lacing.
Smell is quite subtle, with some caramel scents of crystal malt and subtle bttering hops. Not much aroma hops.
The taste is sweet, nutty, with a little bit of bittering hops. Not bad at all and nicely balanced.
Mouthfeel is nice and creamy, but not filling. Quite drinkable.

Photo of jwc215
3.77/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-cask at The Hole in the Wall, London:

Pours copper with a thin tan head. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is herbal, tea-like - reflecting the name well. Pretty robust, at that.

The taste is of buttered biscuit with a touch of caramelish sweetness. I don't know if it's power of suggestion, but there is a tea-like quality (herbal tea with a touch of milk?) in it.

It has a creamy texture, with a light to medium body.

A nice "session" beer that is nicely balanced.

Photo of mrmanning
3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle- Firey copper, pours a creamy white head that leaves a little lace. Aroma is faint. Some earthy malts, straw, a bit of lemon. Flavour is much more pronounced, and I like it for what it is. Lemony hops, subtle caramel malts, a bit grassy, bubblegum. Medium light body, lengthy bitter finish. Me rikey.

Photo of rarbring
3.97/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is clear tea (black tea) colored, has a warm off-white head that leaves little lacing and has rather small curtains.

Smelling of malts, gruel and grass, some red apples. A modest smell.

Starts with sweet bread and porridge, then some more tart fruits, pears and apple seeds.

High carbonation, refreshing texture, a medium body and a dry finish.

Really decent, very sessionable.

Photo of GreenCard
3.62/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: coppery-gold, great clarity, spongey layer of tan froth with rapidly expanding and collapsing bubbles

Aroma: delicate fruity hop nose with hints of caramel, orange marmalade, and toffee

Flavor: dryish malt backbone with a bitter edge of roast and greenish hops; burnt caramel, black tea, grape leaves; finishes dry as a bone with a lingering bitterness

Mouthfeel: medium body, fine carbonation, slight astringency

Other comments: I love the bottle and label. Very eye-catching (in a good way). And it's bottle conditioned. Comparatively rare to find bottle conditioned English ale, especially in a supermarket.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.63/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a nonic pint glass at ChurchKey.

If only tea time was really TEA time...beer is so much better. This timely brew (I tried...and failed...sorry...) pours a slightly hazy amber topped by a whispy ring of large off-white bubbles. The nose comprises caramel, wheat, a slight bit o' citrus (unknown particulars, though), brown sugar-cinnamon, and some minor florals. The taste is quite similar, old bean, though the spicier notes are toned down and the more citrus-inclined notes are jacked-up a bit. A somewhat grassy flavor is mixed in as well, along with some light florals in the back. The body is a light-ish medium, with no real carbonation and a smooth, dry feel. Overall, a fairly tasty brew, but nothing all that special. Session away, people!

Photo of ReDave
3.33/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got this from my Daughter-in-law back from London.

This was a little better than the other offering. but still a little "light"

Poured an amber orange. Pretty good head, off white slightly beige. some lacing.

Light aroma, malt mostly.

Pretty light flavor, some hop flavoring.
This is what i would call a mild, but probably get in trouble for?

Guess i need to somehow go to England.
I wold try this again.

Photo of bifrostguard
3.28/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Nice amber color with minimal head that dissipates quickly leaving no lacing.

S - Very mild. Nutty, fruity and sweet smelling.

T - Also mild. Nutty, fruity and sweet with a bitter finish. Just an average tasting ale.

M - A little sticky sweet and thin, but a touch bitterness is a redeeming quality for me.

D - It's light and doesn't taste bad so I could drink a lot of this, but if I have other options then I'm moving on.

Photo of funkengruven
2.96/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This bottle had been in my fridge for about 2 months until I moved, and has been sitting in my cellar since then (another 2 months). Neck of bottle indicates CAMRA certification of Real Ale. Anyway, here it goes.

Served at cellar temperature, This poured into a pint glass a deep amber with a fizzy white head that subsided to a thin layer on top. Smell is vaguely malty, but a bit weak. The flavor of this beer is a bit weak, however it is of malt with a touch of hops in the finish. Strangely however I found this one to have a rather smooth mouthfeel, but the flavor is a bit too weak to make this a staple in my cellar.

Honestly I was expecting more. It wasn't terrible but I was hoping for some deep caramel-like malts and the characteristic English Kent Goldings hop aroma. Unfortunately I got none of that and therefore I am disappointed.

Photo of janubio
3.26/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

500 ml. bottle. Served in its own pint glass, it pours a beautiful copper colour, with a pretty good head that leaves a lace when it fades, and always leaves a rest on the surface.
Herbal aroma, with cookies and some spice. Light body, medicinal taste, like a syrup, with notes of caramel, spices and pineapple (or is it just pine?). A bit dissapointing in my opinion, bad not bad at all.

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.8/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Well I tried the Hog’s Back Brewery T.E.A. (Tongham English Ale) several times on Cask during a recent trip to England. And I don’t usually add Reviews from memory, but the consistent nature and lovely quaffability of this brew needed to be recorded in the BA archives, especially given the fact that this one rarely makes a Review in the Database.

Appearance: Sampled from the Beer Engine, the absence of a sparkler lends a natural look to the dark amber body, light tan head and gentle carbonation. Southern looks tend to project a certain “flatness”, but the conditioning was good throughout.

Nose and Taste: Well defined and intertwined, the nose and taste are perfect reflections of one another. Soft caramel, biscuit malts, toffee and a nutty feel. Gentle bitterness rounds off the malty start and adds a crisp finish which cuts through the caramel. Maybe it was psychological but there is an element of tannin in this one, like cold Iced Lipton Tea. Soft spices and a very mellow earthiness exhibits a citric lemon tingle when first sampled. Very enjoyable and nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel: Hard to fault, perfect conditioning for a Cask brew. Gentle carbonation fills out the body and adds to the texture. Can feel “thin” but in a way that promotes the Drinkability.

Drinkability: High end quaffability, from the Cask this one just slips down, despite being classed as a premium brew with its 4.2% ABV and sneaking out of the UK Session range it retains a very appealing thirst slaking ability that has tasty rewards mouthful after mouthful. I managed a Pint of TEA at the White Horse in Shere and I swear it never lasted 5 minutes. I could never get tired of this brew.

Overall: I sampled many Pints of this brew during my recent extended weekend in the lovely surroundings of the Surrey Countryside. I tried this brew many, many years ago, actually getting chance to visit the Brewery in 1993 I think to pick up Cask brews for the Wakefield Beer Festival. It seems to have improved immensely and makes for a very refreshing Pint.

Photo of bartle
2.98/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

From the bottle marked " CAMRA says this is REAL ALE " pours a nice amber to copper, very murky with white flakes floating around and a fairly thick frothy pure white head that dissipates quickly.

Kind of scared due to some gunk under the cap and lots of sediments on the neck of the bottle.

the nose is caramel sugar sweet. Like the sweetened multigrain cheerio's. A little noble hop presences. Almost minty. Some green apple and fruity notes which is not appropriate in this quantity.

Rich caramel malt forward on the tongue. Soft vanilla notes backing the pleasant floral hops. There are fruity notes coming again. Not quite jolly rancher like the nose, and it is forgiving. Covered up by a slight biscuit backing. Semi-dry finish. A tad astringent, but nothing too off setting.

The body is low to moderate. Suiting the style well. I was actually expecting a little less from a "real" ale. I am pleased at how this feels on the palate. With the exception to the slight astringency there are no intense off sensations.

I think I would enjoy this beer fresh on a real hand pump. Unfortunately I believe it is past prime and something was attempting to cultivate in the neck of the bottle.

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T.E.A. (Traditional English Ale) from Hog's Back Brewery
79 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.