Fair Trade Beer: Wells Banana Bread Beer

In Fermenting Revolution, I posed a challenge to brewers: make a beer with fair trade ingredients. Today there are a few such beers being made in the U.K. In fact, one of them, Banana Bread Beer from the Wells and Young’s Brewing in Bedford, England has been being brewed since at least 2002.

This is a standard English bitter gone fruity with a pronounced banana twist. The neck label asserts the brew is made with “our own natural mineral water and fairtrade bananas.” And boy do the bananas come out swinging. As soon as I popped the cap I could smell bananas.

Now, having attempted banana brews myself, I know that bananas do not produce a taste or smell of bananas in finished beer. So it was unsurprising to read on the front label this more detailed description: “Malt beverage brewed with bananas and banana flavor added.” In other words, there are bananas in there but all they provide is some additional fermentable sugar, the banana taste and aroma come from chemical flavoring.

It is a powerful candy-like banana aroma and flavor that doesn’t have much body, just chemical punch. Otherwise, this is a middle of the road bitter, somewhat overcarbonated, and rather thin. After about half a pint, I was ready for something else. I think it would benefit from a better malt backbone. Maybe they could try using hefeweizen as the base style. This way the yeast could provide a natural banana aroma and flavor and they could axe the chemical flavoring.

Thumbs up for going the fair trade route, but I won’t be going back for seconds of this one.


9 Responses to Fair Trade Beer: Wells Banana Bread Beer

  1. Scott says:

    I grabbed a bottle of this Banana Bread Beer over the weekend. I’d agree about needing more of a malt backbone, seems gimmicky to me. Like they just wanted to produce a beer that tasted like bananas cause no one else was. Also I was pretty disappointed to see the “banana flavor” added on the label. Oh well, its a start for fair trade ingredients other then coffee.

  2. wallpapers says:


    […]Fair Trade Beer: Wells Banana Bread Beer « Beer Activist[…]…

  3. Je sսis arrivé ѕur votre site internet par chance et ʝe ne le regrette nullement !!

  4. Merveilleux poste : continue de cette façon

  5. Je suis arrivée sur votre site internet par chance : je ne le regrette pas !!!

  6. Très bon article, cօntinuez de cette manière

  7. L’intégralité de ces posts sont incontestablement attrayants

  8. Euhhh êtes vous certain de ce que vous avancez ??

  9. Some of us would like our kitchens renovated but we all know kitchen renovations can be expensive especially if you don’t have enough funds to do it.

    It could also become an ideal gift item for your friends, family and relatives to cherish it forever.
    You don’t have to spend a fortune to decorate your

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: