Thursday, 13 August 2009


Being a beer blogger and a publican perhaps has it's pitfalls. I like to think of myself as an honest person. This blog projects what I'm thinking, perhaps resulting in my heart being worn on my sleeve. I am also aware that what I write might perhaps upset customers or friends. I do sometimes wonder just how far that effect might reach.

I'm a CAMRA member. When I can, in the winter, I try to attend meetings. During the season my time is too precious, and so I don't. I do think the organisations intent in some areas has it's benefits and one of those significant benefits is to encourage pubs and publicans. I've said before, the CAMRA awards are a great boost to morale. Beer festivals are also a good thing and our local branch organise one that I think, in my humble opinion, is pretty good.

I'm not however going to pretend that I don't have opinions against some of the campaigns and policies of CAMRA. I would like to think that I have the democratic right to free speech. It seems though at times I am branded as anti-CAMRA, which is a shame really, because that is not the case. See the rather interesting Session Ale Project, where I get named. This blog is run by an American chap who seems to be fed up with the over dominance of big beers in the craft beer scene over the pond. I think he's got a point. In this country we seem to have an over dominance of session beer, at least that's what it seems like to me.

The local branch, West Cumbria and Western Lakes, are promising to visit Saturday lunch time. It also seems at least one of the most active members reads my blog, perhaps I should just say a big thanks for the nice stuff the branch said in the Summer Edition What Ales. Note page 25, if anybody is interested. Read the rest of the mag, the team do a great job and deserve their efforts to be read.

Finally, and most importantly, I've been having a bit of a fetish for big and even massive beers lately. However, looking at the article in What Ales it can be seen that we do not turn our back on low ABV session ales. Hopefully I'll have my Light Cascade 3.4% on the bar for the girls and boys on Saturday. That should at least please one blog reader.

Incidentally, the weakest beer I've ever had on sale was Drive Me Mild 1.9% made by me. It did OK, for a mistake. The strongest has just gone on sale and is Tokyo* 18.2% made by some people in Scotland and I don't expect to sell much of it. It's all about diversity really.


Wurst/Whorst- Brewing Arts Instructor, CEO APRK said...

Who the the hell is Lew Bryson anyway?? Another East Coast know-it-all. I adapt to my drinking environment. If you don't like it something, don't drink it! Simple as that. Dave, you're doing fine. Just don't start making videos.

The Beer Nut said...

Go on then: what's the on-trade price of a bottle of Tokyo*?

Woolpack Dave said...

Wurst, like you I adapt. I'll even accept the stuff they have on Virgin trains, if I fancy a drink, although to be fair I would normally go with wine in that situation.

Nut, £12.95 is my price. To buy a single bottle through BrewDog's web site is £16.99 once you've added postage and packing. OK, most sensible people will buy more and get discount for volume. Even better if you know the secret discount code [tokyo at present].

Erlangernick said...

I'm a friend of Lew's, if "only" the kind of friend one meets through the beer internet scene. I've argued about and drunk beer with him on two continents. Anyway.

My beergeekery is only about 20 years old. I started drinking crap beer when I was young, and discovered Good Beer later on. I eventually wanted more, more, and more, and living and homebrewing in Orygun at the time served to fuel this.

Then eventually, I started liking less and less. I became a lager, no. I grew to really appreciate lagers. And now that I've been living in Franconia for 5 years, I crave 3.5% bitter, although I have world-class hoppy Kellerbier (5%) for 3.50 € per liter at the beer gardens.

Anyway, my point is, tastes change for some people. I may start homebrewing again here, though my 3.2% bitter might end up being made with inappropriately krautisch Hopfen. Until then, I mix Doppel Hopfen Premium Pils (Br. Schlossbrauerei Stelzer in Fattigau) 3:2 with Clausthaler *Extra Herb* to mimic a session beer at home.

Also remember that you lot have a historical connection to session ale. Our whole history only goes back a couple of centuries, and the melting pot that is our beer culture is a reflection of the melting pot that is American society. Or something like that.

I find the tax incentive idea interesting.

Please, Lord, let that 3.4% beer still be on later next week, say, on Thursday!

Ron Pattinson said...

Couldn't agree more about diversity. I like to have a choice of beer strengths when I'm down the pub. I find having nothing over 4% ABV just as frustrating as having nothing under 7%.

Woolpack Dave said...

Nick, If we haven't got Light Cascade on then Woolpacker 3.8% will be, it's nearly as nice....

Ron, exactly, normally I'd go for anything between the strengths you mention. I like to finish on something stronger as a nightcap. Unless I'm out beer exploring, then anything goes, really.