Cains Formidable Ale | Robert Cain & Company Limited

Cains Formidable AleCains Formidable Ale
16 Ratings
Cains Formidable AleCains Formidable Ale

Brewed by:
Robert Cain & Company Limited
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Bitter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 11-13-2003

Bros Score:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 16 |  Reviews: 11
Photo of steverx8
3.75/5  rDev +11.9%

Photo of EmperorBevis
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of Johnq1964
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Photo of napetry
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of patre_tim
3.61/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Honey/ amber, semi-opaque unfiltered, 1 finger of yellowish head, good carbonation.

S: Malts, banana, dry grass, caramel, toffee.

T: Malt, bananaa, dry grass, not sweet, dough at the end and a long dull English bitter hop taste. Slight sour throughout.

M: Medium bready body, medium carbonation.

O: A good English standard beer. Glad but surprised to have found it in an obscure grocery store in China.

 410 characters

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.92/5  rDev +17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Can't believe I've never reviewed this before: 500ml bottle best before the end of July 2012, poured into an Abbot Ale badged glass tankard two weeks before that date.

The deep golden body had a slight hazy look but the perfectly formed head and aroma compensated for it completely.

Malts all the way here with hops always trying to break even both in the smell and taste: this ensures the beer is semi-sweet and has a mini bitterness at all times as well. The 5.0% ABV suits it nicely and it sits well as the beer sinks down my tankard leaving some thick lacing after each gulp.

 581 characters

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of May 2012. Picked up quite a while back from Lidl.

Poured into a straight pint glass. A clear orange-amber hue with medium carbonation. Forms a large head of white foam that subsides after a minute or so. Aroma of mild caramel malt with subtle hints of grain, honey, dry yeast and stewed hops.

Tastes of light caramel malt with a mild dry finish. Slightly sweet. Notes of honey, faint grain, fruity yeast and stewed hops. Not much bitterness, but quite dry. Mouthfeel is smooth and full-bodied; almost creamy.The carbonation is agreeably tingly. Aftertaste of sweet malt with a hint of yeast and bananas.

Not bad at all; while the overall flavour/aroma doesn't enthuse me, it's balanced character makes it highly drinkable. The mouthfeel is particularly nice - thick and smooth. It has an understated character that would probably make for an excellent session beer when served on cask. Worth sampling if you have the opportunity.

 960 characters

Photo of rob133
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of Daredevil
2.71/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

copper coloured, foamy head which is not lasting very long

nose: very hoppy, however not very distinctive notes

palate: medium body, apricot sweetness paired with vermouth like bitterness ... strangely, the aftertaste is rather sweet than bitter

not very balanced ale/bitter

 277 characters

Photo of wl0307
3.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Coming in a slim 500ml brown bottle, BB May 2012, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass.

A: pours a tawny hue, coming with a restrained level of carbonation and a fluffy off-white head, which retreats fast to a thin sheet to last throughout the drink.
S: a resinous note of hops reminds me more of plastic toys in fact... coupled with sweet citrus, barley-candy-ish and caramely malts and a touch of honey drink... not complex, rather weird, just like my first encounter with the canned version but coming with even less aroma all in all.
T: an effervescent, semi-sweet swallow shows Maris Otter-like pale malts with that unique tinge of stinkiness, as well as boiled root veggie like yum/taro and a spicy-citric touch of hoppiness, while a dry palate full of hop bitterness makes up for the slight lack of body; not much of a proper aftertaste is detected, apart from a semi-saltiness as of yeastiness and a mildly chewy bitter undertone of hops.
M&D: the mouthfeel is slightly too fizzy for my taste, but not unexpectedly so, while the body is pretty light for a 5% pale premium bitter; I can't say this bottle has fundamentally changed my view on this product in general, but on the palate it is definitely much more agreeable than my last encounter with the canned version proved to be. This product is brewed more in line with the drier, pale ale style, I believe, hence quite drinkable.

 1,402 characters

Photo of Sigmund
3.63/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, as Cains FA Formidable Ale, from Voldby Købmandsgård, Denmark. ABV is 5.0%. Golden brown colour, moderate white head. Moderate aroma of biscuity malts, a little fruit, toffee and "dusty" hops. The flavour has very much the same elements as the aroma. Pleasant to drink, but does not blow your socks off.

 320 characters

Photo of PartyBear
3.2/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - A golden honey colour. Initially appears quite carbonated, however, this dissipates quickly, leaving the classic flat appearance that you get with English Bitters.

S - Sugar sweet smell, with a hint of oranges, and ginger.

T - The taste is quite sweet initially, leaving a mildly bitter aftertaste. Hints of ginger and molasses.

M - Sticky and slightly oily.

D - The flavours mix well in the ale, giving it an overall pleasant taste. The sweetness gives it a warming feeling, which would make the ale a good winter drink. Unfortunately, the aftertaste is a bit hard going.

 584 characters

Photo of Nickls
3.08/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(From notes)

A - Light, brownish gold color, not bad lacing through sample

S - Can't tell if I got hop bitterness, or something else. Pretty non-descript 'beer' aromas, with a bit of malt

T - Certainly tastes better than it smells, but not saying much. A bit of flower/herbal like hop bitterness, with sourish aftertaste

M - Medium-thin MF, nothing bad, but certainly not great. A little slick

D - Just OK, I finished the sample and it wasn't too inaccessible or difficult. Just pretty bland.

Overall, this isn't the worst brew that I've had, but nothing I would recommend or try again.

 593 characters

Photo of GreenCard
3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: yellowy-brown, slight haze, spongey layer of white bubbles, OK head retention

Aroma: bread crust, light malt, raisins, honey

Flavor: rich malty breadiness with a light grassy hop flavor; caramel, toast; finishes semisweet with a subtle bitterness and lingering malt in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium body, gentle carbonation, soft texture, smooth

Other comments: The 1 Litre can is a bit comical-looking, but there's no reason to laugh at this beer. Quite scrumptious. Though at 5% abv, this is only "formidable" if you drink the whole litre yourself!

 577 characters

Photo of ToneControl
2.3/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I'm sure I remember this tasting better a few years ago. Ah well.
This beer is more an ale than a bitter, and the malt dominates. Ultimately, it tastes like a supermarket brand rather than anything distinctive. I poured half of this pint down the sink.

 253 characters

Photo of diablo14
4/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

comes in the biggest can ive ever seen for a beer, but that doesnt affect the quality. gotta love something that comes in a full litre size. one of the better english ales going around. and considering it comes in a can, you dont get any better in this medium from any region.

brozne color with a full creamy head. has great malty aromas, zesty citrus, and a hint of spice. superb malt flavors, with a huge fruitiness backed up with a gingery spiciness. medium bodied with bubbly carbonation and wonderful hop balance that makes it very crisp and fresh, while at the same time being quite complex and robust. one of those classic english ales that can be consumed during a session without losing any respect for its characters.

a beer thats great value and great drinking, but one that also stands out as a little different from other english ales in its nature. yet another fine beer from the mother country that shows when it comes to making ales of complexity and character, these fellas are hard to top.

 1,015 characters

Cains Formidable Ale from Robert Cain & Company Limited
Beer rating: 3.35 out of 5 with 16 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.