Saturday 17 January 2009

Cats away, the mice will play

I'm replacing the python in my bar. A python is a multiway, cooled pipe for carrying beer from the cellar to the bar and connects to the handpulls and gas fonts. Gas fonts are the things the very cold fizzy stuff is dispensed from. The python seemed to start leaking beer last season so a new one was in order.

It turns out the reason it was leaking was that where it runs under the floor, the mice have nibbled nice little holes in it to get at the beer. The little rodent bar stewards have been having a party at my expense. Now at £7.50 per metre I can't afford to replace the python too often, so I'm a little dis-chuffed with those mickeys.

It turns out though that the blighters have taste. They didn't choose the very fizzy lines to chew through, oh no, they know the score; They went straight for the cask lines, no messing, and left the lager well alone.

Having tried a few other beers around the world this winter it strikes me that there are perhaps some very nice fizzy beers around. I wonder if any readers have ideas as to what I could consider for next season. Clearly the stuff I have on is of inferior quality as even the mice don't like it.

Last year we had Lindeboom, Pure Czeck and Timmermans Kriek on draft. We can get anything from James Clay and would be interested in hearing from anybody who has an opinion on this matter.

Before anybody thinks we are overrun with mice, we do have a contract with Rentakill, who do a very good job of getting rid of all types of pests. I did ask about their ability to rid a pub of drunken late night boozers when I've had enough and want to go to bed, but apparently I just have to carry on being rude to people and that should work.

No, we don't have a standard cooking lager, we really don't want to attract that type of customer, or mouse.


Anonymous said...

How about a Belgian Blonde?
Lager drinkers will drink it because they don't know any better, and those that know will have the satisfaction that they are drinking ale.

Unknown said...

I think that would limit me to:
based on the fact that not many would drink anything above 6%. And even that would be pushing it.

But, worthy idea.

Alistair Reece said...

I have a soft spot for Budvar, which is always a good lager for those who cannot, or will not, broaden their horizons. The challenge though for a lot of British pubs I have been in that sell Budvar is to serve it properly.

Stonch said...

I wouldn't put anything on which competes with your cask ale sales - turnover and all that. Hardcore, habitual lager drinkers aren't going to drink anything else anyway.

Try Moravka lager! James Clay doesn't supply it but the brewer will generally sell direct to pubs and offers proper customer support (no, I'm not on a retainer, I just like him and his product). Failing that I'd get Pilsner Urquell in. Avoid Bitburger - for some reason lots of real ale freehouses stock that as if it's a quality beer, where in reality it's not.

Unknown said...

Velky Al, I've thought about Budvar, and I may well try it.

Jeff, I was actually thinking of doing exactly what you advise against. I saw you comments on Spin Drift some time ago where you question what good a fizzed up ale is. Ale drinkers won't drink it because it's not real ale and lager drinkers won't drink it because it's not lager.

There is some question about "lager" as sold in many pubs is really a lagered beer and as such is brewed much more like an ale but with hopping and grist controlled to make it a bit more lager tasting. In essence often a fizzed up light mild chilled to death.

When it's hot many customers like a more fizzy, colder beer. In fact most of my fizzy stuff is sold on hot days. I have real ale drinkers who switch when it's hot. I think there is mileage here and I'm thinking of fizzing up one of my own brews this year, just to see.

Anonymous said...

I love wheat beers so how about Schnieder.The keg one is diffrentfrom the bottled one most people will have tried.Far better imo.

Anonymous said...

I know of some very nice apple wines and ciders you can get from this really small producer in Canada. He's a nice bloke who is based an hour out of Toronto and produces the strongest cider in the world. It's absolutely superb stuff.

Might cost a bit to ship them over though.