St Cuthbert / Magnificat | Durham Brewery Ltd

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St Cuthbert / MagnificatSt Cuthbert / Magnificat
Very Good
25 Ratings
St Cuthbert / MagnificatSt Cuthbert / Magnificat

Brewed by:
Durham Brewery Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 09-25-2003

View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 25 |  Reviews: 17
Reviews by beautifulday:
Photo of beautifulday
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: No finings in this. A beer not clarified for the masses & thus probably truer to its historic origins. A hazy beeswax, honey, amber colour with a whirlwind of bubbles (carbonation) that does a fantastic job of retaining the head for a long while. (V.similar in hue to sierra nev. pale ale)

S: Not overwhelming on the nose but hops are evident. Dank, citrus, zesty, grassy bouquet.

T: Everything ive listed above but to a greater, more tangible extent. almost cloying in the way it grabs your attention and attacks your tastebuds. The hops are rife (1 notch down from full on hophead territiry) but the malt matches and balances the hops, something which differs to the usual hop attack of the APA. Superbly constructed.

M: Huge body to this beer. As a previous reviewer noted: every standard ingredient of the beer (perhaps minus the wheat-the beer is tart enough from the hops-may play a role in appearance though) is noticeable here, very noticeable. Thick, chewy, attributes often associated with drinks such as porters and stouts.

D: Despite the completeness of this beer, it almost defies logic in that it is eminantly (deceptively) drinkable. The excessive carb. makes the beer refreshing. Im sure St. Cuthbert (in all his saintly wisdom) would have been proud of this brew.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Easton70
4.49/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of rastaman
3.32/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Some malt sweetness at the start.. Very dry hoppy finish, some nice citrusy hops, dry bitter finish, abit of a savoury mouthfeel, some metal in the finish, highly carbonated, also like other Durham beers. This wasn't bad, but again falls short in most departments, but not bad.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.43/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle, conditioned therein.

This beer pours a murky medium golden amber hue, with a half finger of limited foamy, creamy off-white head, which disappears quickly, leaving some sparse islet lace around the glass. It smells of thin caramel malt, mild generic citrus, and floral, somewhat musty hops. The taste is biscuity caramel malt, mild tropical fruit, and husky floral hops, with a slight booze edge. The carbonation is quite low, the body medium weight, a tad pithy, but generally smooth. It finishes fairly sweet, the malt going sugary, the fruit and florals only slightly less so.

The combination of English, American, and Czech hops seems to have only accomplished an act of mutual neutering - very little of any sort of bitterness translates, and it's mostly in the English variety, which has this come off as much more of a fruity ESB, than a hoppy IPA.

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Photo of Sigmund
4.62/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(Bottle conditioned, 500 ml, as Durham St Cuthbert). A new favourite of mine. Btw, cask conditioned this beer is called "Magnificat", otherwise it's the same brew. I had this wonderful bottle conditioned beer under the vaulted ceiling of Durham Cathedral and Cloister Restaurant, where it rightly belongs. The commercial description seems pretty accurate, but this beer may have more in common (strength, yeastiness) with some belgian ales than most British IPAs. Durham Brewery is not much more than 10 years old, but this rich and full flavoured beer would be worthy of St. Cuthbert himself (he died 687 AD, btw). Colour is golden and hazy, carbonation (natural) is low to moderate. If one needs a textbook example of the fact that beer is made of the three elements malts, yeast and hops (+ water, of course), and that each of those three elements should be clearly discernible in aroma and flavour - well, here it is. To quote the brewery: "Despite being strong, this beer is not too sweet, but has a luscious malty base over which a complex bitterness makes balancing, thirst quenching properties." Amen!

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Photo of mdagnew
3.72/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle bought from The Vineyard, Belfast...

Poured a nice golden copper colour. White head poured big and billowy with pock marked top then faded to decent thickish covering. A light stream of carbonation bubbles drifts to the surface.... lots of random patches of sticky lacing...

Aroma - tart fresh and juicy fruits (lemons, grapefruits, pears, some peaches), yeasty spiciness - reminded me of a Belgian Tripel... grassy, some pepperiness, some light grain notes, faint trace of almond / marzipan, quite floral, some talc notes...

Taste - Again lots of tart and spicy fruits (bitter oranges, grapefuits, sour apples), some faint wheatiness, lots of peppery and citrusy hops, some slight vegetal traces, sea salt, biscuity maltiness, chalky, some sweet floral honey...

Feel - Pretty sharp and dry... light bodied... pretty refreshing and quaffable although a bit strong at 6.5% to be sessionable...

Overall - A pretty decent brew and by far the best i've had from Durham Brewery... worth a try....

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Photo of Derek
3.62/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep golden bronze, white head, very thin ring of retention shows a little leg.

S: Apricot, peach, nectarine, marmalade, candied pineapple, golden raisins, figs, Swedish berries, hint of steelie mineral.

T: Pale, biscuity malt with hints of toffee; apricot; nectarine; candied pineapple; pear; light mineral; restrained bitterness; hints of alcohol.

M: Light residual sweetness with a slightly drying finish.

D/O: Ten or twenty years ago this might have been considered an American IPA, but now it's an eclectic mix. Modest bitterness, light residual sweetness, with some alcohol warmth. More of a strong pale ale?

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Photo of windypete
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of JackieKu
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of Raugupatis
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one on a two-week trip through Northern England. I first found it while stopping by Durham Cathedral for sight-seeing. They had it in the attached cafe.

Served in a 500 ml bottle, this is a bottle-conditioned ale with live sediment that provides a very nice natural carbonation.

Citrus and hops on the pallette, but not overly heavy.

Pours with a head that dissipates slowly as the bubbles of carbonation float away.

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Photo of haz77
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a hazy amber, with an inch of frothy, firm white head. This falls to a nice heavy cap. Virtually no carbonation.

S - Pine, honey, grapefruit, orange. Very pleasant.

T - Initial burst of orange and grapefruit which slowly gives way - with the help of cleansing carbonation - to a sweet, floral middle. The flavour begins to dry and becomes bitter and slightly astringent at the finish. An enjoyable lingering bitter, semi-sweet aftertaste.

M - Light-medium body. Carbonation is aggressive at first, before softening. Very nice.

D - Highly drinkable. Another good offering from this brewery.

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Photo of Schmoog
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of vancurly
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB December 2010.

a) Profuse bubbling, through a pale apricot, hazy body. Heavy, whipped white head.

s) Floral, slight detergent. Hint of ginger & lemon notes. Warms into caramel.

f) Spicy fruit roll, perfumy, almost delicate. Distinct pale malt (Maris ?) notes. Complex and balanced. Floral hops and supporting bitterness.

m) Light yet creamy, finishes smoothly.

d) Lovely drink.

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Photo of beholder_pl
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: golden, clear (looks like a lager) with a thick white long-lasting head. Awesome lacing.

Aroma: very weak hop aroma, but you wouldn't tell this was brewed using hops as Challenger or Columbus. Aroma is more malty than hoppy. Again - more like a (bad) lager. I think I also smell something like rusty nails in the back...

Taste: it's bitter and malty. Again - it's hard to taste the hops and the citrus they should give to the taste. Bitterness is herbal and dry, kinda like from a very strong green tea. Some earthy notes in the back.

Mouthfeel: high carbonation, medium bodied.

Overall: Not what I expected. Reading the label I was hoping for an excellent or very good IPA at least. But I wouldn't call this beer an IPA at all, rather a Strong Bitter or something like that. But previous reviews made me think - maybe I just got a bad batch? Who knows. Beer was fresh, BB 08-2015.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy orange-amber with a very thin, lacy head. Mellow hops, nice creamy, buttery malts. I think I may have served this too cold, as the scent is really light. Slight wine-y and bourbon hints.

Nice biscuity malt taste; hints of citrus, peach and even oak and butter. Really smooth, slightly buttery. Nice, bitter even slightly sour citrus aftertaste. Definite yeast in there.

Smooth carbonation, a nice IPA. Not quite an American IPA, but not really an English one either. Almost a hybrid of the two.

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Photo of psm90
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of Burnerdale
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ADZA
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a nice looking light honey hue with beautiful carbonation that leaves behind a very creamy two finger head that stays and leaves some nice lacing here and there,the aroma is quite floral with some honeydew notes aswell as grapefruit and freshly baked bread,it has a nice medium bodied well carbonated mouthfeel and exudes tastes of sweet citrus flavours mainly mandarin and orange zest with also some caramel,toffee sweetness that really takes most bitterness out of the end and overall its a pretty tasty drop that is not really bitter at all and does not remind me of any other AIPA's i have tasted before i mean its no hop bomb by any means and more sweet than bitter.

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Photo of thierrynantes
3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Beer bottle (50 cl.) purchased from Bières & Chopes, and tasted in 2013.

Appearance : orange color with white foamy head (nice lacing due to wheat).
Smell : malty and spicy aromas, with citrus notes.
Taste & mouthfeel :fruity and hoppy flavors, with bitter finish.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style Indian Pale Ale.

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

A: Pours hazy orange with a generous white creamy, yet light head that slowly sinks into nice lacings.

S: Caramell malt, slightly roasted. Lots of fruits; pears, green apples, lemons and peaches. Some spices.

T: Bready semi-sweet malt. Bitterhops. Floral hops gives it that fruity flavour you smelled earlier; green apples, pears, peaches and lemon. Spicy.

M: Aftertaste is great, lasts for a long time and holds a nice bitterness. Body is medium and carbonation a bit offensive. Smooth.

O: A nice beer. Maybe not as American as I thought, but still very nice - the hops lacked the pine and the rich citric note one could expect from an AIPA.

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Photo of Kirk
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of will_eye_e
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Photo of brendan13
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a pint glass a slightly hazy dark orange colour with a couple of centimetres of fluffy white head that hangs out for a fair while.
S - Nice floral & woody/herbal spice hop notes are at the front followed by a bit of stone fruit and some sweetish biscuity malt hints.
T - The hops also come through in the taste quite nicely but are very well balanced by a biscuit maltiness.
M - Medium bodied with a fairly high carbonation.
D - This is a great beer. Tempted to give it a high score but at like $9AUS a bottle it's a bit pricey for regular consumption. Well worth a try.

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Photo of wl0307
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: slightly cloudy, orangey-amber hue; the pale off-white beer head comes spongey, foamy, and thick, slowly dissipating and leaving tight sheets of lacing; micro-scopic bubbles ascend freely from the bottom of the glass... Just beautiful.
S: deeply aromatic malty, quite chewy and big like crushed raw malts, backed by a flow of assertive and complex hoppyness comprising at least Goldings, with its intense orange-citric edge and slightly sharp, spicy hints. The nose is constantly ensued by a restrained but noticeable, piney yeastiness as from the yeast sediments. Quite balanced and very enjoyable, but not as complex and pronounced as I'd prefer from an English IPA or APA.
T: full mouthful of dryish+tangy impact like crushed grape-seeds, dried lemon-rind, slightly sharp and coarse (pale) malts... the citric-bitter mouthfeel and flavour gradually "close in" to the centre of the tongue, leaving a compelling flow of flowery fragrance lurking along with the good depth of bitter hops, akin to both wood sprigs and dried lemon rind+seeds. Fantastic aftertaste: dry, soothing, sufficiently bitter, slightly tannic... arousing more and more thirst as each sip goes... just lovely...
M&D: refreshing on the mouthfeel thanks to not just the excellent/soft carbonation but also the well-executed hop profile. For a 6.5%abv. English IPA or American Pale Ale, the flavour leans towards the lighter side, but the overall palate is balanced and the structure vertical, making it superbly quaffable than heavier interpretations (Downton IPA I've tasted recently being a good example from English breweries). The complex hop performance in particular is a real hit in this beer. Durham does a great job on its bottle-conditioned beers, and this one is no exception, whichever style it should be termed. Highly recommended.

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Photo of dgilks
3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clearish golden colour with a big, foamy, off-white head. Good head retention.

Caramelised malts with some light, floral and fruity hops. Mild fruit character. Very finely balanced and really lacking a touch of hop character.

Mostly malty with the light, sweet, somewhat caramelised malt playing against a mild bitterness and light fruit character. Not particularly hoppy.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Good.

A nice enough beer but it is more of a pale ESB than an IPA.

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St Cuthbert / Magnificat from Durham Brewery Ltd
Beer rating: 3.81 out of 5 with 25 ratings