Reserve Pale Ale well worth a Captain Cook

I AM starting to think it is actually possible to have too much of a good thing.

This is the result of what is now known as "a big weekend".

It started on Friday with Hugh the Neighbour and I hosting our wine and food club to a pig on a spit dinner on Friday night at HTN's place.

This proved to be a most convivial evening.

I then followed this up with a barbecue at home with some friends on Saturday night (I am not sure who thought the bottle of port was a good idea - but, in the end, it probably wasn't).

On Sunday more friends and I took the opportunity to clear our fridge of all the odds and sods left from various tasting six packs I had amassed over the past couple of months, which led to a mid-afternoon nanna nap.

So it came to pass that by the time I wandered over to HTN's at about five o'clock on Sunday after he had been at an interclub bridge competition all day, neither of us was particularly in need of a drink.

Still, duty called, and we manned up and launched into the Endeavour Vintage Brewing Company's Reserve Pale Ale and Reserve Amber ale.

Releasing their first commercial beer in 2010, Endeavour Brewing is the child of three friends who got together in the belief they could make exciting beers using only the four traditional ingredients - malt, hops, yeast and water.

And I would have to say they have succeeded.

The 2014 Reserve Pale Ale is everything you would hope it to be - cloudy in the glass, holding a great head, lovely floral nose and a burst of bitterness on the palate that gives the beer a real kick.

I have to admit though, both HTN and I had supped on more than two Squire Hop Thiefs during the preceding 48 hours and both of us thought it was nice but you didn't feel like a session. This was more our problem than the beer's - I would be keen to give it another go on a hot day after an alcohol-free week.

The Amber Ale was another creature all together. Much more red and darker in the glass, it reeks of toasted chocolate and caramel malts with a subtle yet persistent bitterness and was the perfect antidote to an arduous weekend. Both are worthy of a trial - they will not disappoint.

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