A final red beer for the spree of red ales reviewed this month. This is another beer in the flagship range from the Santorini Brewing Company, something a bit different from the Yellow Donkey or the Crazy Donkey, the Red Donkey. A red ale true to form, this beer is still relatively light and refreshing, but it also has rich flavors that come from a variety of malts and hops from around the world. Again, one of those hops (Nelson Sauvin in this case) is from New Zealand, which gives it a bit of a connection to home for me.
The nose is rich with malts and a light smell of mastic, which has defined the other Donkey beers. The taste is rich with malts and some notes of hops are in there too, along with a taste of honey. The finish is a bit dry, but rich with malts that leave a pleasant taste that sticks around for a bit. As is the case with the rest of the Donkey range the Red Donkey is unfiltered, so there is a fair bit of sediment in the bottle which gives it a cloudy complexion if you care to pour it out.
The end of this beer tastes like a solid red ale. The malts a rich and the flavor is full, with that slightly dry finish. The mastic notes at the start and the overall unfiltered taste of it just give it that something extra that makes it stand out. If you are in Greece or on Santorini in particular, don’t pass this beer up if you have the chance. If you don’t have the chance while you are there, make it happen somehow. It is available around the place in bars but also in craft brew or specialty food shops in the main cities. Perfect in the hot Mediterranean sun, but also nice on a blustery evening in the southern hemisphere as well.
Who: Santorini Brewing Company, Greece
What: Red ale
Nose: Malt, light mastic
Look: Cloudy dark gold
Taste: Honey, malts, hops
Finish: Dry, malts
Form Tried: 330ml bottle