Courage Directors Bitter | Wells & Young's Ltd

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Courage Directors BitterCourage Directors Bitter
119 Ratings
Courage Directors BitterCourage Directors Bitter

Brewed by:
Wells & Young's Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Bitter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 08-09-2002

View: Beers
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 119 |  Reviews: 74
Reviews by bmacaskill:
Photo of bmacaskill
4.08/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Originally reserved for the directors of the brewery."

Hmm. You wonder why they'd hang on to something they could have so easily sold ;-)

Directors (and shouldn't that be Directors' [or Directors's]?) is nice and malty, with a note of pear and a surprisingly hoppy taste for a British bitter. It's much nice than Courage's Best Bitter and, in Canada, a steal at CDN$2.00/500ml.

Very much a sipping ale, Directors is a smooth end to a hectic day.

 456 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of fionn13
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of April 2018. Purchased recently from Home Bargains. The label describes it as a superior ale originally brewed exclusively for the directors of the brewery.

A: Poured into a tulip pint glass. A deep coppery-amber colour with excellent clarity and plentiful carbonation. Produces a large head of creamy white foam that lasts for a few minutes before reducing to a patchy surface layer. Slight lacing.

S: Aroma of rich caramel malt with hints of toasted grain, nuttiness, subtle fruitiness, ale yeast, leafy hops and mild grass/hay. Nicely balanced.

T: Tastes of caramel malt with notes of mild roasted grain, a touch of barley sugar, nuttiness, ale yeast, faint fruitiness, leafy hops and grass/hay. Slightly sweet, followed by a substantial bitterness upon swallowing.

M: Mouthfeel is smooth, tingly and dry, with prickly carbonation and decent body. Could be a shade thicker for the style. Mildly astringent. Aftertaste of bitter leafy hops, caramel malt, nuttiness and ale yeast.

O: Pretty good - a traditional ale with a classic flavour profile. Looks alright, while the aroma and flavour are a satisfying blend of caramel malt, ale yeast and leafy hops. Decent body. Goes down readily enough - almost moreish. Worth sampling.

 1,261 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle with a BB date stamp of 14 Dec. 2015.

Poured deep red-amber with a decent sized head that displayed poor retention and only left a few spots of lacing.

Feel: near full bodied with medium carbonation.

Flavor: lightly hops such that the hops are obvious but the ale is just mildly bitter and about equally malty and hoppy.

O: amber ale meets ESB

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Photo of rastaman
1.3/5  rDev -62.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Like the regular best, this is very bland. Smooth sweet palate, very, very simple and boring, i'm sorry, i really don't have much to say about this one, one dimentional, also had a slight off-fruit character.

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Photo of JohnW
3.61/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I remember having this beer in local bars in my area of Birmingham UK in the 1970s when many pubs in the area were either Ansells or M&B owned, and were forced to swap some pubs for other brewers in the big shake up about Monopolies and drinkers not being given much choice of beer. I remember I was not much keen on it at first, having been on a diet of Ansells (ugh!!) and M&B bitter (how my tastes have changed since!!) though I grew to enjoy it over a few weeks. Having had it again recently, was surprised it seemed to have changed little from how I remember it, and for (as Mark says in here) a beer by one of the big bad boys of UK brewing, its not a bad drink, acceptable when no other decent beer or guest available. Reasonable balance between malty sweetness and hoppy bitterness, making it easy to drink and would make a good session beer, not being too strong. Certainly one to try if you have not had it before. Never had it from a can or bottle so cannot compare it to the cask version.

John W
Bham UK

 1,019 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.71/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500ml can - a sort of surprising entry to the Alberta market for the typically 'once-in-a-while' English import segment.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium copper amber colour, with two fingers of puffy, rocky, and bubbly tan head, which leaves some disintegrating ice shelf lace around the glass as things lazily sink away.

It smells of grainy and biscuity pale malt, muddled dark orchard fruity notes (prunes and raisins, predominately), a hint of wayward son yeastiness, and some sassy leafy, weedy, and grassy noble green hop bitters. The taste is bready and doughy caramel malt, some further indistinct black stone fruitiness, a touch of peppery spice, faded yeasty esters, and more testy earthy, floral, and dead grassy verdant hoppiness.

The carbonation is fairly pervasive in its come-hither frothiness, the body a so-so middleweight, and sort of smooth, with a wee airy creaminess settling in as things start to warm up a bit out of the ol' basement frigo. It finishes off-dry, the base malt holding tight, amongst the lingering spicy and hoppy intransigence.

Overall, this is a fairly enjoyable English bitter, the hops doing well to elicit some New World elan, in addition to their inherent old-school qualities. I'm a bit taken by this one, even as its ABV seems typically strangled, as such. Easy to drink, and worthy of sessioning, if I were ever to find myself in a pub situation where the default was a given.

 1,437 characters

Photo of Foxchop
1.92/5  rDev -44.5%

Photo of beer_bottle
4.04/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of frontalot
4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.44/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber with a slowly fading white head.
Nose shows a lot of sweet raisins, bready malt, toffee and subtle nutty notes, but unfortunately a metallic not is also just noticeable.
More sweet bready malt as a flaovur, along with figs and nutty notes. Then it all goes downhill with a boring, metallic bitterness that makes up the short-lived, faint finish.
Carbonation is high, the body seems watery!

 406 characters

Photo of Branlott42
3.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.2/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is one of the first bitter that I drank. Pourred an amber brew with a nice foamy head on top of it. Taste is bitter (would have expected more bitterness) and a little bit fruity. No spice are overly detectable. Would be curious to try some more bitter. Would drink this again...

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Photo of CRJMellor
3.53/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear light toffee color with a small off-white head. Lots of spots of lace on the glass.
Aroma of toffee, slight se water smell and some nuttiness.
Flavor was very malt, both on start and finish.
Mouthfeel is sickly sweet on the front and finish. Hops are light and perfumy and didn't really cut the malty sweetness enough.
Drinkability is too sweet, just not that enjoyable. Little bit above average.

 414 characters

Photo of myszmen
4.4/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

My brother-in-low bought me a bottle in Liverpool.
Appereance: great color, typical. 3 min head only.
Smell: caramel, fruity
taste: good balanced, quite hoppy, really good
Mouthfeel: (lack of words, i'm working on it)
drinkability: my best beer in this week, i wish i had six-pack of these
Sorry for my English. This is my first review i hope it's not my last

 360 characters

Photo of Pelicanrocks
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of irishkyle21
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of tatterdash
4.2/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Drank this pretty much at room temp in a mug. Pours a very nice mahogany with a slightly off white head. Smell was some fruit and roasted malt, with a taste to match. Nice lingering hoppy aftertaste, and a very thin mouthfeel that it common for the style. If I had to drink 3 of this as a muscle relaxant to survive transport to the Vogan ship, I'd make it 6 pints, and cry when I knew the world (and this bitter) was gone.

"Drink up Arthur, the world's about to end."

 471 characters

Photo of Rwalford74
3/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.38/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hand pulled pint in my nearest pub (Park Inn, Wellington, Shropshire) on 11th May 2012.

Amber body, clear and handsome looking: off-white head of foam sat on top.

When ever I’ve had this beer (many times over the years) it has never had a great aroma: no matter who was brewing it at the time. Malts foremost with hints of fruity hops is what I got this time, which is more or less what I remember from other tastings.

Malts lead the way in the taste too: with the hops and yeast coming along nicely in the background. Fruity biscuits; lightly baked with a finish of mildly bittering hops. Easy to drink and a standard ‘Best Bitter’; never been a favourite but nothing wrong with it.

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Photo of Drummermean
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of CigarInspector
3.8/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of PartyHatjo
3.85/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on cask at the Collingwood Arms in Jesmond.

Appearance: Pale amber color, some haziness. Creamy white head that laces quite well over the course of the session.

Aroma: Pungent earthy hop tones blend quite well with a pungent American hop character of grapefruit. Some toastiness comes through as well.

Taste: Initial flavor of American (Centennial or Cascade) blends to a more characteristic English hoppiness. Slight diacetyl yields some toffee hints to the malt character. Proper cellaring does this brew a world of good, bringing out some of the yeasty fruitiness as well.

Mouthfeel: Balance leans a bit more towards the bitter side, but still good.

Drinkability: Easy drinker, but the more harsh bitter character and higher abv make it less suitable for a true session.

 783 characters

Photo of leginsh
4.14/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of vinicole
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

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Courage Directors Bitter from Wells & Young's Ltd
Beer rating: 3.46 out of 5 with 119 ratings