The nice people who do PR for the St Austell brewery sent me a box of the new one: Trelawny, a 3.8% ABV bitter, named in honour of a local hero who fought valiantly against religious tolerance in 17th century England.
Australian Galaxy hops are, we're told, at the centre of this dark amber beer. It's no hop-bomb, however, preferring subtlety and understatement throughout. The hops impart a fresh and succulent fruitiness: some nectarine, perhaps shading towards more tart plum and even rhubarb notes. The malt base is light and quite dry and tannic, something I always enjoy in English bitter. Putting them together you get a refreshing quencher designed very much for session drinking.
My only real criticism is that it's a little thin and gassy. While I'm sure the cask version cleans that up, I'm not sure if the lovely fruity hops would come out of that arrangement well. I'd have to try it on draught to know, of course, which I'd be very happy to do should I ever see it in a pub.