Home > American IPA, India Pale Ale > Marks & Spencer Citra IPA

Marks & Spencer Citra IPA

Rating: 3.55

The first of two Marks & Spencer branded beer that I’ll be reviewing in quick succession now, this is one that I picked up a couple of weeks ago from the shop when trying to use up the last few points of a gift card I received; the beer will however be my sixth of this time from the shop. The beer itself is brewed by Oakham Ales and that was part of the reason I picked a bottle up, part of me was hoping that it would be a similar offering to their excellent Oakham Citra that I’ve enjoyed on a number of occasions since first reviewing it year roughly five years ago. The last Marks & Spencer exclusive beer that I tried was a bottle of Sambrook’s Battersea Rye in September 2015 but since it is not a shop that I regularly visit then that’s not really too surprising I guess. A single hop variety beer, this one is my fourth Oakham brewed beer and follows on from their Jeffrey Hudson Bitter that I checked off the 1001 beers list early last year and I’d be happy if this one was just as good as that was.

Appearance (3/5): An orange tinged amber that is semi-cloud and topped with a somewhat disappointing, quarter centimetre head that is foamy and white in colour but it does manage to cover the surface at least.
Aroma (7/10): Starting with a nice burst of, you’ve guess it, Citra hop that give the beer quite a fresh nose in the early going, this one is surprisingly strong in the early going and had a few fruits and citrus notes backing the hops up. There is a couple of grassy hops coming through with a touch of straw before the odd tropical notes came through around the middle. There was quiet a few juices showing with this one and that was a pleasant surprise too; most notably some pineapple and grapefruit came through nearer the need of what was a good beer on the nose.
Taste (7/10): Again quite juicy and following on well from the nose, there was a good helping of citrus and tropical fruits in the early going with the mango from the nose coming through before the odd earthy hop showed itself. There was a light bitterness as you got nearer the end but these didn’t manage to drown out the fresh and juicy fruits which were here in abundance. Around the middle some pale malts made themselves known as well but it was the juicy flavours that seemed to dominate.
Palate (4/5): Sitting somewhere around light-medium to medium bodied, this one was surprisingly crisp and not as dry as I’d expected either. There was plenty of bitter hops in the early going and there’s a nice citrus tang coming through as well at times. There’s a nice balance to the beer and it’s quite easy to drink as well, although it fades ever so slightly right at the end but it’s still a good one.

Overall (15/20): Surprisingly good stuff for what is essentially a supermarket beer, albeit one that’s from Oakham Ales. The beer is quite enjoyable from the start, the strong citrus flavours and bitter hops kick things off well and the beer manages to hold its own until the end with some earthy hops and a few pale malts showing at times. It’s not quite good as Oakham Citra from the same brewery but it was an enjoyable one that went down better than I’d expected.

Brewed In: Peterborough, England
Brewery: Oakham Ales / The Brewery Tap
Full Name: Marks & Spencer Single Hop Variety Citra IPA
First Brewed: 2013
Type: American IPA
Abv: 4.9%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Marks & Spencer
Price: £2.50

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  1. July 10, 2017 at 10:06

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