Had a brilliant day yesterday. It began with lunch at the Harwood Arms, together with Joe Wadsack, Will Willis and Stuart Bowman-Hood. Proceedings began with a pint of Sambrook’s junction: rich, a bit hoppy, and with a distinct note of eggy sulfide (Burton stink is the correct term for this?). This went very well with [...]
Had a fun dinner party last night. My buddy Karl started proceedings off well by bring round a wonderful beer. It was a cask ale from Twickenham Fine Ales – the ‘Strange Brew’.
Now I love bottled beer, but cask ales just taste different, and to enjoy them you have to go to a pub. Nothing [...]
So now I am in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. I with a group of wine scientists at a retreat focusing on post-bottling wine chemistry, and we are staying at a rather grand but slightly bizarre hotel in Asheville. Don’t get me wrong: it’s lovely and luxurious, but the decor is very hunting-inspired, with [...]
This is quite a nice beer. It’s Greene King’s attempt at replicating the famous India Pale Ales of the 18th century, and while I imagine it’s more polished and pretty than the originals, it’s still quite delicious.
Bronze in colour, it combines spicy, hoppy notes with rich, almost sweet toffee and honey flavours, finishing with a [...]
Just back from a quick lunchtime pint at my local Wetherspoons, over the road. Now I’m not discussing whether Wetherspoon is a good or bad chain of pubs, all I know is that they usually have some superb guest ales, at amazingly low prices. And one of these was my tipple today, and it was [...]
Flew into Blenheim, in the Marlborough wine region here in New Zealand this morning. It was a tiny 20-seater plane, buffeted around a bit by the blustery winter weather.
I visited Plant and Food Research, where I interviewed more scientists about Sauvignon Blanc. Pictured above is the experimental winery, where they make wines in even the [...]
A question. Why is it that the beer industry is happy to use crown caps with PVC liners for bottled beers?
These PVC liners allow a high level of oxygen transmission. This reduces the shelf-life of the beer, and also means that the same beer is experienced differently by consumers depending on when it is drunk.
Popped into Oddbins on the way home this evening. Nice selection of wines, these days. Lots interested me. Came out with three beers, though. Was particularly interested to try the Brew Dog, because I’d read a lot about these guys. Brilliant, slightly edgy marketing. The beer is great, too.
Brew Dog Trashy Blonde (you know you [...]
One of my occasional forays into beer. Two of them tonight; both in the IPA style, which I am really keen on.
St Peter’s India Pale Ale
5.5% alcohol. £1.99 Waitrose. Aromatically full of interest, this has some sweet toasty, bready aromas which combine nicely with floral, zesty hoppy notes. In the mouth, it is full and rich [...]
Back to the International Wine Challenge today. This week we are judging the wines that passed from last, awarding them medals, and in a few cases demoting some. Had another great panel today. The wine trade is full of interesting and friendly people, it seems.
I’ve been working hard this evening, so it’s time to begin [...]