Celebrating the best of the dark side this February

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Unbarred ‘Chonka’ £9.50, 9.2% | Brew York ‘Little Purple One’ £3.50, 2.8% | Ayinger ‘Celebrator’ £3.60, 6.7% | Gadds’ ‘Dogbolter’ £4.20, 5.6% | Moor ‘Barrel Aged Barley Wine’ £10, 10%

February is the month we celebrate and showcase the best dark beers we can find here at Fuggles. From decadent dessert-inspired stouts, through to classic dark lagers, there’s a whole range of delicious treats out there – and something for all tastes. So while the weather is still cold and the days short, it’s the perfect time to grab a winter warmer.


Unbarred – Chonka

For those that want something a little sweeter, Unbarred have got you covered with Chonka. Brewed with Cherries and Tonka beans, this beer is laden with loads of chocolate notes, cherry and chewy oat notes. It’s pretty decadent!


Brew York – Little Purple One

This may, or may not, be named after a certain chocolate. With a low abv, they’ve used a rich malt base to pack in plenty of flavour, ramped up with vanilla and cacao nibs. All finished off with a smooth nuttiness.


Ayinger – Celebrator

This is a bit of a cult hero for us at Fuggles. Brewed just outside Munich by Ayinger (cannily in a town named Aying) this doppelbock – or dark, strong lager, is a world renowned award winner. Complex, rich and malty with a touch of smokiness, it’s an absolute treat on a dark winters’ night and excellent alongside (or even inside) a rich stew or with some blue cheese.


Ramsgate Brewery – Gadds’ Dogbolter

Eddie and his team make some properly good beer, always have done. They’ve also just installed a co2 recovery unit in their brewery too, meaning they can capture the co2 produced during the fermentation process and use it elsewhere – which is a great thing for the environment. Dogbolter is a classic porter, brewed with six different malts, giving a wonderful robust beer full of roasted malt character, chocolate and a lasting bitterness too. It’s rightly a bit of classic – you just can’t really go wrong with Eddie’s beers.


Moor Brewery – Extra Oak Barley Wine

Bristol-based Moor Brewery are no strangers to producing some of the country’s most interesting and delicious dark beers – from old ales to stouts and indeed, to this barley wine. Packing a punch at 10% as is usual for the style, this beer has been aging for two years in oak barrels, which has really allowed the beer to mellow and round out, with a subtle hint of oak alongside caramel, toffee and lots of fruitiness. Drink now or alternatively, leave it for a while longer and it will only improve with age.

MILD AT HEART Boxcar Milds £4.40 – £6.50, 0.5% to 9%

Boxcar – Dark Mild

Mild as a beer style is having a bit of a resurgence over the past few years. Essentially, an easy drinking yet complex dark beer – milds are pretty moreish and super drinkable. So what better than four different variations?

Boxcar have really nailed the style and we’ve loved their original Dark Mild iteration from their early days. Since then we’ve had a Double Dark Mild join and now, a Triple and even an alcohol-free version. All are full of varying levels of dark fruit flavours, complemented by subtle milk chocolate notes and roasted malt with a silky-smooth finish.

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