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Des de Moor
Best beer and travel writing award 2015, 2011 -- British Guild of Beer Writers Awards
Accredited Beer Sommelier
Writer of "Probably the best book about beer in London" - Londonist
"A necessity if you're a beer geek travelling to London town" - Beer Advocate
"A joy to read" - Roger Protz
"Very authoritative" - Tim Webb.
"One of the top beer writers in the UK" - Mark Dredge.
"A beer guru" - Popbitch.
Des de Moor


Red Squirrel IPA in the USA

CAMRA North tasting 2010

A shorter version of this review was first published in BEER February 2010 as part of a piece about beers to taste with . For more beers tasted with , see Hoggleys Solstice Stout.

Also known as IPA in the USA, under which name it was reviewed.

ABV: 5.4%
Origin: Hertford, Hertfordshire, England

IPA in the USA

A more experimental pairing to taste with chocolate [compared to the darker beers reviewed in previous posts] is a hoppy IPA: again chocolate notes will calm the hops as the sweetness of the confectionery offsets them. A great new discovery among contemporary British IPAs is Red Squirrel American IPA (formerly IPA in the USA) from a Hertford-based micro.

Established in 2004 by Gary Hayward, the brewery is a supporter of red squirrel conservation in the UK, where this native species has largely been supplanted by the North American grey squirrel, but is unafraid to use North American hops, as with the Cascade and Chinook that appear alongside Fuggles in this beer. Complexity is also added by a grist that includes pale crystal, carapils and Munich malt alongside standard pale ale malt.

My sample was a good amber colour, if slightly cloudy, with a foamy yellowish head and thick resiny tobacco like aromas with chocolate and tangerine notes. A notably US-inspired firm malt palate had peppery grapefruit juice hops and a touch of biscuit crystal malt. A smooth swallow heralded a long bittersweet finish with developing rooty pepper hops and grassy pineppale flavours. Tasting with chocolate brought out some tropical fruit notes and contextualised the bitterness. “You’ll either love it or hate it,” says Gary, and when I presented the beer at a tasting it did indeed split the room, but I think it’s a very approachable British version of this newly reinterpreted style.

One final point: when tasting with chocolate, forget Dairy Milk and go for the premium stuff – great beer deserves great chocolate, and 70% plain works best.

Read more about this beer at

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