Poor Newstead had a rough go of it in 2022. Just after they announced the decision to rebrand and rearrange how they did core range beers, the Great Flood beat their production brewery to a pulp and left it bleeding in the mud. When they finally picked themselves up and got their brewery in working order again months later, they went: “Stuff it.” and brought back some old favourites.
Two To The Valley – or Tooter, if you’re in the know* – has been a firm favourite of many since the brewery opened in 2013. It’s gone through some minor alterations through the years, but it’s always been undeniably West Coast, satisfyingly bitter, and surprisingly drinkable.
TTTV takes its malt seriously: it carries along like a freight train, bringing solid body and depth without really adding sweetness. On the hops side, there’s pine, there’s grapefruit peel, there’s a floral note and there’s some other fruitiness that I refuse to describe as tropical because I don’t want to give the wrong impression that this is even close to a hazy IPA. An almost savoury, earthy bitterness trundles along and here it’s hard to uncouple the malt from the hops.
* Or if you’re extremely lazy, or if you have a heart attack in the middle of ordering a beer.