Naughty Nurse Amber Ale

Naughty Nurse Amber Ale
1 12 oz bottle, $2.00++ 5.0% ABV

Purchased at Whole Foods, West Hartford

Hands down, the best thing about the Naughty Nurse is Googling Naughty Nurse. After that, it all goes a bit downhill for me.

I consider myself a pretty progressive thinking guy and I’m all about women’s rights and all that good stuff. (Hey, I dated a Wesleyan chick for several years. You know what I’m sayin’.) But who doesn’t like a naughty archetype? Teachers, Catholic school girl, French maid (what makes them French?), Vietnamese insurance company product engineer, nurse…

I have my favorite (Vietnamese insurance company product engineer), but I can certainly see the allure of the rest. And even if I had trouble, Google certainly helps. My least favorite would probably be a naughty nurse.

Why? Because nurses help you when you are sick and I don’t like to be sick and, well, the whole frame of reference is off with a naughty nurse. On top of that, I don’t like City Steam’s Naughty Nurse Amber Ale either.

I say that knowing full well that this is City Steam’s best selling beer. And when it comes to their three bottled beers, I’d guess that that trend continues. I have no idea why that’s the case – other than the sexy name. And frankly, I think it IS all about the sexy name.

Because the beer has never done it for me. Not on draught and not in the bottle. I think one reason may be its identity crisis. It calls itself an amber ale, but it tastes more in line with an English bitter (a bad English bitter, but an English bitter nonetheless). Regardless of whatever style it is supposed to be, it doesn’t have much going for it. I’ve also seen it referred to as a pale ale.

So this nurse has a naughty habit of not being what she pretends to be. OooOooh, naughty.

City Steam says:

Our best seller!!. If you are perpetually parched, have a wicked wheeze, or just plain posses an insatiable thirst, try the Naughty Nurse. Sunset in color, brewed with a combination of pale and crystal malts, London yeast, and a variety of traditional English hops for a spicy, slightly bittersweet finish and a wonderful fruity and flowery aroma.

They forgot to mention one thing about the Naughty Nurse: The finish. It’s downright awful. The bottle’s label says the aroma and taste involve licorice too. This beer is a mess. It’s not just me either – the guy at Harvey’s said the same thing about it while extolling the virtues of City Steam’s Innocence Ale (a very good IPA).

The Nurse’s finish sticks in your throat and coats it. It begs for you to hock a loogie with every swallow (or politely clear your throat if you’re more delicate). I have found this to be the case with Naughty Nurse for 10 years going, so it’s not just one bottle or one draught one time.

I’ll just have to see if it tastes better if I have one with a naught Vietnamese insurance company product engineer. And I think I can arrange that at some point.

Overall Rating: D
Rating vs. Similar style: D-

Beer Advocate’s Reviews of the Naughty Nurse
City Steam Brewery & Cafe
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