The focus on a single ingredient - American hops - is the top of a slippery slope. It encourages an ever-narrowing focus on certain elements of that ingredient, which sends us sliding towards a place where fizzy, alcoholic fruit juice can be mistaken for beer.
A Chaucerian pilgrimage to the Ales Tales Belgian Beer Festival in Bethnal Green, on which two signs are given, three poets share their wisdom, 10 ales are drunk, and one circle is closed.
With a couple of friends to lend a helping hand, brew day can be a hospitable time of aimless conversation, mutual admiration of shiny brewing equipment, and shameless indulgence in good beer, cheese and ham.
With Vintage Beer, Patrick Dawson has given us a handy, easy-to-use book on a topic that is attracting more and more attention from beer drinkers.
International mega-brewers acquiring craft breweries poses a substantial challenge to the concerned consumer that arguably needs to be addressed by the US Brewers' Association. With their “independent craft brewer” definition, however, and especially with their new seal, they have only compounded that challenge.
In my imagination, sometimes the discarded brown bottles of the city sing out to me. They want to be rescued. They want to be washed, scrubbed, cleansed, like seabirds plucked from an oil slick.
I called the beer “A1 Nut Job”. It’s got peanut butter in it. It originated in an encounter that made me think of Sigmund Freud and his musings on Doppelgӓngers and the “unheimlich”. I like to imagine Jack Nicholson saying it in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Why was Dany Prignon – the George Best of Belgian brewing, its Richard Feynman, its Doctor Who, if you will – enquiring after my drinking habits?
The pungent, earthy rind of a Saint Nectaire and the startling acetic bite of Duchesse de Bourgogne ensured that this journey into a wildernesses of flavour was not for the faint-hearted.
Whereas Belgian beer embodies the togetherness-in-diversity of the national football team, German beers assert their regionalism with all the heat and aggression of a local derby.