‘Brewed for easy drinking’ says the bottle. Well, there’s nothing Lagerboy craves more than to shut off the confused, shouty parts of his brain and just chug away at something golden. Drown the voices out with the hiss of carbonation. A premium British lager sounds just the ticket, as ever. Doves of peace flutter down from the label, bearing sheaves of barley. An offering for Lagerboy? Everything gratefully accepted, as ever.
What happens when a distribution company pairs with a brand agency to create a beer? This. Two years of development were involved, apparently. Breweries have popped up with a wide range of different beers in a quarter of the time (not that Lagerboy is concerned with variety, of course). Manchester’s Chilli Marketing – pushers of Rekorderlig cider and Cusqueña – decided to bravely take the plunge and put out their own offering.
‘Why is Saint a new style of lager?’ asks the website. The answer seems to be because they don’t use ‘heavy industrial treatment’ and involve flaked maize in the recipe. They also don’t use any added sugar, which comes as a relief. None of us are getting any younger, after all. It certainly looks the part – giving Lagerboy that familiar tingle of anticipation on sight of the golden beer, and whispering rising bubbles.
The merest sniff of the nose tells you how new this lager is. Corny sweetness, vegetal aromas from the start. Miller Genuine Draft. The Saaz hops are lost, any spicy dryness overwhelmed by the caramelised malt and that pesky flaked maize. Despite the lack of added sugar, it’s really sweet. Saint tastes mass-produced, and people will undoubtedly buy it – but it’s not a new style of lager – it is style lager. Substance doesn’t get a look in.