Thanks to everyone who voted in last weeks face off between Salopian and Wylam. I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of votes we received. In another surprise Wylam was a clear winner, I was thinking that the race would be neck and neck with two breweries of this quality but no, there was a clear majority.
Perhaps the fact that cask Wylam is rare for us while Salopian beer is a regular feature tipped the balance? Anyway it was a bit of fun and we will do it again when we have two casks that will make a good head to head. For those of you who voted for the Salopian (and everyone else) I will be tapping it Friday.
Trade Tasting Event
On Monday night I attended a trade event featuring four big names of the UK brewing world: Marble, Wild Beer, Siren and Fierce. As you can imagine the beer was on good form and I sampled as much as I could on your behalf. Consequently Tuesday was a bit slow. Favourite beer of the night was Siren Broken Dream, a small sip reminded me how good this breakfast stout is. Unfortunately it is the type of beer which would be a bit slow on our draught taps but as a result of the event we have pale kegs from Wild Beer and Siren on order.
The George Southwark
Following the trade event we had bit of a thirst for a pint of ale and since we were in the area we took a dose of history with our pint by visiting the George in Southwark. With a long history spanning centuries it is the only galleried coaching inn left in London and is well worth a visit for the history alone. It is a Green King pub so the beer might not be the most interesting but the pint of IPA and Landlord we had were both on good form as the saying goes. If you are interested in the history of the George and the area itself then I highly recommend Shakespeare’s Local by Pete Brown which is a sociable history of the George and wider London drinking culture through the centuries. In fact I think I might have to dig out my copy and re-read this entertaining history.
The Price of Beer
Speaking of beer writer Pete Brown reminds me of an article he posted this week in regards to the price of a beer. This is a subject we have touched on a few times in our emails, although not quite in as succinct way as Pete Brown does. You can read the article here, in fact I feel like printing it out and handing to anyone who questions a can costing £6 or the £11 bottle for example.
No, definitely not a plot by us Southerners to ensure that the Rugby World Cup remains in its rightful hemisphere but a tasty beer which is available to you at a tasty price. Brewed by Bristol Beer Factory it is an IPA hopped with Nelson Sauvin (NZ) and Ella (Australia) and then aged in ex white burgundy barrels. Hoppy, funky, spritzy and with woody undertones and a slight white wine note this is a complex and rewarding beer which maintains great drinkability. Now are you wondering why I haven’t just put this in our new arrivals spot? Well we are helping out one of our supplier friends out who had a stock of this beer which went past its best before and wanted it sold. We were happy to conduct extensive taste tests to confirm that the beer is tasting good before selling it and after a few bottles can confirm it is more than drinkable. In fact the extra time in the bottle has probably helped it develop. Find out for yourself by picking up a bottle next time you are in the shop and oh, the price? Well you will just have to visit but I promise I have sharpened my pencil to a needle point.
It might be an all bottle line up this week but don’t despair if you are a fan of the can, there has been a healthy arrival of canned beer as well. As always we love your feedback on the beers you try, in fact I have been working on a way that we could incorporate a guest review from one of you occasionally. Let me know if you are interested in taking part, the beer won’t be free but think of the glory and bragging rights of being featured in this email!
La Trappe Tripel 8%
I do love a good Tripel and this offering from La Trappe fits the bill. It pours with a dense white head and a lively carbonation that entraps a spicy, fruity aroma that also has a sweet note. A sip reveals a touch of that sweetness that is soon overtaken by a long, dry bitterness and an alcohol warmth that is strong but not overpowering.
Salopian Midnight Express 5.2%
The warmer weather we have experienced lately might have you thinking it isn’t stout season but remember stouts are for life, not just for winter. Midnight Express has all the roasted and toasted characteristic you want in a stout along with a slight citrus note from the hops. Another winner from Salopian.
Oedipus Gaia 7%
Having a few dry days after the tasting event on Monday I haven’t actually tried this yet but thought it is worth a mention since it is our first beer from Oedipus, an Amsterdam brewery who are getting a lot of attention lately. A West Coast IPA in style Oedipus describe it as ‘Piney and resinous’ with a touch of fruitiness thanks to a spot of dry hopping with Amarillo. Frankly as soon I read the word piney I was sold. This is going in the fridge for the weekend.
Available Draught Beers
Franklins English Garden 3.8% (cask) Light pale
Time & Tide Kiss Me Quick 2.9% (keg) DDH super Session IPA
Salopian Tenderfoot 4.5% (keg) Zesty and fruity
Salopian Push 3.9% (cask) Tropical Session IPA
Mallinsons Nelson Sauvin 3.8% (cask) Single hopped blonde ale
Dark Star Session IPA 4.2% (cask) Crisp and sessionable pale
Northern Monk Eternal 4.1% (keg) Citrusy, light and refreshing
Ruth and Mike