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Centurion's Ghost Ale - York Brewery Company Limited

Not Rated.
Centurion's Ghost AleCenturion's Ghost Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

35 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 35
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 15.8%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
York Brewery Company Limited visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 11-14-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 35 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by MrVonzipper:
Photo of MrVonzipper
2.45/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Ghost ale. Vint. '98
Dark cloudy soda. No head. 4 bubbles. 

Great nose. Nice dark fruit. Like chocolate covered rum raisins.  

Sour bitter mocha. Covered rum soaked fruit. 

Mouthfeel is Bitter and flat. 

Overall its pretty Bad but not the worst I've ever had. The nose is still great but everything else has turned to crap.

MrVonzipper, Oct 17, 2011
More User Reviews:
Photo of deebo
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

deebo, Sep 12, 2014
Photo of ehammond1
2.33/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Bottle (Pre 1999)

(Aged for 12+ years)

Thanks for sharing, MrVonzipper!

Dark, murky brown with nearly no visible carbonation. Leaves the glass clean.

The nose has actually held up (or changed into something) quite nicely, consisting of lots of dark fruits, namely figs and dates, a bit of earth and leaves, and some alcohol-soaked cherry. Dare I say...I like it?

The flavor, however, has not held up nearly as nicely. There's a huge amount of oxidation and seems a bit metallic--this tastes like how rust looks.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with very little, if any, carbonation.

This one's seen better days, though it wasn't even the most vile beer I drank that evening!

ehammond1, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of jazzyjeff13
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's my 50th review! I haven't written about beer from my nearest city yet, but I shall rectify this omission immediately. For those who are not familiar with York's most famous ghostly legend, it tells of a lost roman legion who were seen in the cellar of the treasurer's house. The individual who saw them observed that they were only visible from the knees upwards. It transpired that the path of an ancient roman road lay beneath the house, and had the soldiers been fully visible they would have been marching along it. They've never been seen since, so who knows the truth...but Centurion's Ghost Ale is named after this tale.

A 500ml bottle with a BB date of March 2012. The label tells the story of York's ghostly roman legion.

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass. A deep brown hue with a hint of ruby. Light carbonation and a finger of off-white foam that leaves fleetingly. A fantastic aroma of roasted malt with hints of burnt coffee, caramel and toffee sweetness. Rich and enticing.

A distinctive roasted malt flavour with an underlying sweet character. Notes of coffee and caramel, accompanied by a bitter hoppy finish. Complex and nicely balanced. Mouthfeel is smooth and slightly astringent. Leaves an aftertaste of bitterness and burnt notes.

An excellent ale - I reckon this to be the best of York brewery's fine offerings. It has a rich flavour that would round off a session nicely. Well worth seeking out...

jazzyjeff13, Feb 13, 2011
Photo of DStoked
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

DStoked, Jun 01, 2013
Photo of surfadelic23
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One thing that consistenly amazes me about English real ales are the complexity of flavors possible in low abv brews! It shouldn't as I homebrew, but it does. One positive is that it makes one appreciate that a beer doesn't have to be 20% abv and brewed with esoteric bs ingrediants to be good...
A warming, dark bitter ale, with a roasted malt taste. Very easy to drink for its strength 5.4%.
I had this on cask in numerous pubs in York but especially enjoyed it after a huge dinner in the little pub in my B&B.
***ALSO, WHEN IN YORK MAKE SURE TO TOUR THE BREWERY. VERY INTERESTING AND INFORMATIVE***

surfadelic23, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Currently on cask @ Map Room, served in a tapered FFF glass, 20 oz. for $6. Enjoyed in the company of autumnaldave & beertooth.

Poured a dark brown with a glint of red at the edges. Bubbly head that poofed up above the rim, and magically it kept it's head for the duration of the glass. Aroma was fairly nondescript, earthy, tea-like, tobacco.

The taste was light and pleasant, subdued toasted malt, tobacco, and an essence of honey in the aftertaste. Fairly toned down and mild for a "strong ale". Pretty light bodied, yet went down very easy. This was a nice cask ale, nothing too wild but tasty nonetheless.

emerge077, Apr 24, 2009
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had at the Last Drop Inn in York. First day in York and roaming City Center, dropped in for a bite and some brew. I can't imagine a better backdrop. Very nice, sweet folks.
This is listed as an English Strong Ale, much to my surprise. I'm a little too green to dispute, but I thought I was drinking an English Stout.
This was a very tasty, highly drinkable brew. I wasn't about to mention this there, but reminded me of Murphy's.

cindyjeffsmith, Dec 21, 2009
Photo of BlackHaddock
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml Bottle:BBD 28 Jul 2013. Shared with the wife on 14 Jun 2013. Poured into two old 'Home Ales' half-pint countryman tankards.

Dark, very dark: ruby red hints in the light, good tanned head that lasted on both halves.

Malty aroma and taste: charcoal and chocolate infused coffee, all rolled up in a caramel flavoured brown bread bap. Then soaked over night in alcohol, great!

Smooth, complex and tasty, more malts obviously than hops, but the hops do keep the sweetness in check nicely.

Good body feel and depth: a very pleasant beer all round.

BlackHaddock, Jun 14, 2013
Photo of vinicole
4/5  rDev +3.6%

vinicole, Nov 14, 2013
Photo of FreshHawk
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark mahogany with definite ruby streaks. Full, large, frothy, creamy, sticky, off cream color with very good retention leaving a thick layer of creamy lace.

S - Sweet, earthy nut flavors strongest with some background hints of chocolate. Some strong dark and caramel malt aroma as well. Very faint dark fruit (and general fruitiness) underneath it all.

T - Interesting mix of different English flavors. Initially there is a lot of earthy and nutty taste with mild dark and caramel malt bringing some sweetness. Some chocolate malt and a bit of a roasted feel, somewhat similar to an English Stout with more coming out mid-sip. Some grassy and earthy hops come out.

M - Medium to light body with a little below average carbonation. Fairly smooth.

D - Quite drinkable with a nice mix of dark mild and stout flavors. Light and easy on the tongue but it has enough complexity to be interesting that builds as you drink it.

Notes: Best before 28/August/2010. Very enjoyable beer to drink. It's definitely English although I don't think it fits neatly into a style. Well balanced and very enjoyable beer. Worth grabbing one if you can.

FreshHawk, May 23, 2010
Photo of DarthKostrizer
1.8/5  rDev -53.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Vintage 98' brought to a bottleshare by MrVonzipper. Who brings a bottle to a bottleshare that expired in 1999? I will tell you who, a guy whose collection is so vast that he feels pity on most of us for never even seeing some of these bottles that he shows up with, not one bottle, but 3, that expired in 1999. Yeah, thats right bitches: suck one.

Look: Pours a coca cola brown with no head

Smell: Dark fruits raisins plums and dates. Pretty decent smell for being as old as it is

Taste: This beer which goes without saying is past its prime. But the beer did have some nice tobacco and leather notes

Mouthfeel: Full body and no carbonation

Overall: This beer is 13 years old and I can't believe I had the chance to actually drink this. This is one of those beers that I never thought I would be able to try but thanks to MrVonzipper I got the chance and I am eternally in his debt. Oh yeah the beer SUCKS

DarthKostrizer, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of EmperorBevis
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a mouth watering black body with plum tints and thickish tan head that does quite stick.

Aromas of treacle and cough syrup.

Nice roasted taste staying away from sweet tastes charcoal, coffee and roots with a slight bitter finish

good solid mouthfeel without being too heavy going

Good stuff all round.

EmperorBevis, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of mdagnew
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask at the Yorkshire Terrier pub, York, June 2010... served at room temperature...

Poured a deep dark burgundy red / almost completely black colour... Mocha tan head poured very tight, thick and foamy with a meringue like top.. this faded slowly to good one finger covering... some decent lacing clings to the glass throughout...

Aroma - Lots of good strong roasted malts mixed with strong biscuit notes... toasted nuttiness, light hops, dark brown sugar / toffee sweetness, light fruits (blackcurrents, apples, prunes), earthy, some sooty traces...

Taste - Pretty much as above... some grassy and peppery notes, hint of citrus, good bitterness coming through from the roasted malts, toffee sweetness...

Feel - Fairly smooth and creamy... medium bodied... at only 5.4% this is a very drinkable brew...

A very nice sessionable brew... well worth a try...

mdagnew, Jul 08, 2010
Photo of endless1408
4/5  rDev +3.6%

endless1408, Jun 01, 2014
Photo of fizzyted
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

fizzyted, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of StJamesGate
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On cask at the 2011 Belfast Beer Festival.

Brown-black with tan froth. Tar, smoke and spice on the nose.
Sour grain, rusk, and cinnamon toast to start, salty, with big leaf and branch hops to end.
Meat juice and berry finish (!) and dry linger. Light to medium, soft and sticky.

I tasted this blind and man, was I confused - who'd have guessed a Black Bitter?? Plenty of roast, very umami, but light enough to be drinkable. Satisfying.

StJamesGate, Nov 21, 2011
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I really enjoyed this a lot on cask at the Brick Store Pub. Gravity pour as well, which was nice. Pours a beautiful very dark brown, almost black, with ruby highlights. Has a relatively thick pancake head that is off-white. Some nice lacing. Smells grainy, including a touch of grain sourness, as well as some gentle cocoa and roasted notes. Perhaps a little touch of coffee as well. The taste is really very nice- rich and full, but smooth and creamy, with a pleasant light nuttiness, more cocoa notes, and some very light creamy roastiness. Sweet and creamy on the finish with some light earthy hops. There is a touch of copper throughout, as well as some subdued dried fruit. Very pleasant. Pleasantly smooth and creamy in the mouth, and just wonderful overall.

Georgiabeer, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown. Earthy and woody flavor that carries a slight nut tone. Bitter edge is there for sure, but its mature enough to be able to keep it pleasant. Feel is smooth with a low but slightly biting carbonation. It's pretty smooth and nice to drink.

RblWthACoz, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of BDTyre
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amazing strong, dark ale from York. This looks a lot like a porter and there is definitely chocolatey, coffee hints and the use of roasted barley and chocolate malts is obvious.

Rich, earthy malt flavour and low hop profile. Very nice mouthfeel - low, natural carbonation. Could be a nice session beer, but it is a little "heavy" and even the brewery itself admits its not really for session drinking.

BDTyre, Feb 06, 2010
Photo of tbeckett
4/5  rDev +3.6%

tbeckett, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of -jD-
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

-jD-, Aug 21, 2014
Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 500ml brown pop top with cool label. Best by June 28 2012. Brought this back with me from England. Loved this on cask in 2005; let's see what the bottled version's like! Poured into my Black Sheep Riggwelter tulip pint at true cellar temperature.

Appearance: Beautiful dark walnut brew with brilliant clarity. Rich looking brew, with a nice creamy light beige cap which shows good retention.

Smell: Mild roast up front; not as sharp as a brown porter, though a bit more than your typical brown ale. Hints of milk chocolate and some nutty tones as well. Wee bit of dark fruitiness as well. Overall, this is rich, reasonably complex, and quite pleasant. B to B+

Taste: Somewhere between a brown porter and a nut brown ale. There's quite a surprising bitterness here, however. The malt bill includes pale, crystal, and chocolate, and I'm willing to bet that there's a decent bit of the latter in here. Yet there's also a strong, fruity hop bitterness here as well (the hop bill includes Challenger, Fuggles, and Bramling Cross). No idea on the IBU's here, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was somewhere in the 30s or low 40s. There's a nice bit of roast and maltiness here, but the bitterness is surprisingly dominant here. Overall, it's a good beer, but it's a bit unbalanced (IMO) towards the hops. Still, very nice malt character as well.

Mouthfeel: A bit over-carbed in the bottle; this is better on cask, obviously, but this is not a bad carbonation level for this style of beer. Other than that, it's fairly rich and full for the gravity.

Overall: Is this the same, damn-near life-changing beer I had back in 2005 on cask at the York Brewery? Well, not quite. I managed to pop into the brewery this past summer to grab a half-pint after a whirlwind tour of York's city center, and I thought it was pretty good, if not remarkable. I also had a bottle this summer in York and it was...meh. This, on the other hand (I believe from a fresher batch) is really quite tasty, if, as I said, a bit more bitter than I'd like for the style.

BedetheVenerable, Feb 28, 2012
Photo of Beerstorian
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Beerstorian, Feb 23, 2013
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Centurion's Ghost Ale from York Brewery Company Limited
86 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.