Brew By Numbers are, you guessed it, a new brewery that appeared in London somewhere around the start of 2013, but as with these things it takes a while for them to make enough beer to spare some for the Northern market.
Still, they're here; so what's the deal with them? Well, each style or recipe of beer is allocated a number: Brown Ale is 09. Each variation of that style is given a sub-category, 09/01 is a Brown Ale brewed with Columbus and Bramling Cross hops. This makes comparison between ingredients within or across styles easy, and also serves to give the brewery its name.
09/01 pours russet with glowing amber highlights, there's a rocky granite head to top it off but what really grabs the attention is the aroma. A fantastic contrast is formed between the tangerine and pine of the Columbus, with a residual blackcurrant and black pepper note provided by Bramling that works superbly. Couple this with the dusty cocoa and treacle released by the malt and it's a real treat.
The flavour does not disappoint either; an initial strawberry jam pudding intensifies into sultanas and spotted dick. A resinous pine bitterness, accented by mint chocolate and thyme, breaks through a dusty cocoa finish to leave a complex, dry finish lacing lemony cracked pepper and wholemeal bread across the palate.