Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Andwell's Ruddy Darter

Through the swirling clouds of ruddy ale comes a clear vision of ruby red with a clotted cream head. Wheaty bread and hoppy fruit start to play on the palette and follow on with sweet raisin, redcurrant and blackberry. Dry but not bitter, welcoming but not warming Andwell's Ruddy Darter is punchy and pronounced. An excellent lunchtime or session ale that marries so perfectly with a packet of cheese and onion crisps, close your eyes and you can imagine this as the perfect accompaniment to a mature cheddar truckle and wheaty crackers for the perfect summer picnic.

Andwell's Ruddy Darter is a rich ruby ale with a fruity aroma. This Hampshire ale is named after a deep red dragon fly found in local rivers and wetlands. The ale, newest to the Andwell’s range uses malted rye to create its characteristic ruby glow. The flavours and aromas derive from a combination of English hops.

The malts used by Andwell’s are supplied by Warminster Maltings which use malt barley grown in farms around the Brewery. Andwell’s ales also benefit from the locally-sourced water used in the brewing process. The water is rich in natural ions having percolated out of the chalk aquifers located beneath the Brewery.

The Ruddy Darter attains a wingspan of up to 6cm. The head, thorax and abdomen of the male are vivid red, while the female is slightly smaller, and is a golden-yellow colour with black markings. The Ruddy Darter can be found between the months of July and November.

The Ruddy Darter is to be found in temperate regions throughout Europe as far west as Siberia and as far south as the northern Sahara. Its conservation status is regarded as secure, and indeed numbers seem to be increasing in some locations such as central England. It tends to prefer quiet bodies of water that feature semi aquatic vegetation such as rushes and reeds.

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