May 12th, 2013
Cain’s of Liverpool has had a very chequered history, period; especially so since been bought by the former Leicester based Dusanj brothers. I have written about Cain’s and them before; here and here.
The brothers initially bought Cain’s brewery in 2002, but the acquisition of the loss-making pub chain, Honeycombe Leisure in 2007 led to their administration in August 2008 with close to £50m of debts. The brothers subsequently repurchased the brewery and six pubs via a pre-pack, minus the Honeycombe pubs. Read the rest of this entry »
May 4th, 2013
For those not acquainted – mushy peas are green amorphous heaps of leguminous erratic’s.
People of a certain age even with little knowledge of British politics of the past few decades still know that Peter Mandelson once mistakenly referred to mushy peas as guacamole in a Hartlepool fish-and-chip shop. The story goes that he was buying supper at a chippy in his former constituency. He asked for haddock, chips and “some of that guacamole” – mistaking the mushy peas for avocado dip.
It was a perfect Mandelson story, involving his metropolitan tastes and supposed ignorance of working-class life. But of course he never said it; the tale was spurious and put about by Neil Kinnock who claims to have attributed the story as a tease on the hated spin-doctor. Read the rest of this entry »
April 29th, 2013
I have been a long term opponent of minimum pricing; writing on this blog in August 2010 – Minimum pricing of alcohol – The thin end of the wedge and later that year I even appeared on the BBC’s Politics Show talking against the proposal.
Last month David Cameron whilst pledging to stop cheap alcohol being sold in supermarkets did not thankfully commit to minimum pricing. Dave told MPs at Prime Minister’s questions that the government was still examining the results of a consultation; this against mounting speculation that the move he initially personally championed would now be abandoned. A number of cabinet ministers have also recently made clear they now harbour doubts.
Dave’s stance was ridiculed by the Labour leader, Ed Miliband, who joked at the time: “Could the prime minister tell us, is there anything he could organise in a brewery?” Read the rest of this entry »
April 26th, 2013
This post on Desert Island Beers is a real coup as it features none other than Kirrily Waldhorn, Australia’s very own Beer Diva and ‘first lady of beer’; a beer presenter, educator, consultant, writer and judge.
As founder of Beer Diva, Sydney-sider Kirrily travels Australia hosting beer tastings for private and corporate groups; workshops on beer styles and flavours, beer and food matching and beer history; training for bar and restaurant staff and training for chefs matching beer and food.
Her transformation into the Beer Diva started when she was working for brewing company Lion Nathan in the marketing department. She became involved in a project with Lion Nathan brewing boss Bill Taylor, a man who apparently loves a beer and a good feed and is skilled at making sure the two complement each other. That collaboration changed her world. Read the rest of this entry »
April 19th, 2013
This weeks Desert Island castaway is David Bonighton, brewer & co. owner, Mountain Goat Beer Pty Ltd, Richmond, Victoria, Australia.
David says like a lot of epiphanies, it happened when he least expected it; he was studying economics in the USA when he tried his first craft beer, and it set him down a road he’s still on. On his way home to Australia in 1991, his beer horizons were stretched further in the UK, so that when he got back he was utterly disappointed about the lack of local craft beer; so started brewing his own.
Thus Mountain Goat started out in David’s backyard in the early 90′s and David was cranking out homebrews almost every weekend when a postcard turned up from Cam (Hines),(co-owner) backpacking through Canada at the time. Read the rest of this entry »
April 17th, 2013
Waimea is a new hop variety that was only released in late 2012 from the New Zealand Plant & Food Research hop breeding programme in Riwaka. A granddaughter of Pacific Jade it was selected initially for alpha production and commercialised on its dual purpose characteristics.
The descriptors are intense fresh tangelo, citrus fruit with pine needle characteristics, with little indication given that this is a big alpha type hop and a big finisher! We managed to get hold of 10kg the other week and have just used nearly 4kg in our latest single hop beer, Waimea – did you see what we did there!
I tweeted the other week that we had some: ‘Our Waimea hops have landed – what to do with them?’ and Jay Krause (Quantum Brewery) responded – let me have 5kg! He’s promised to come and help us use some of what we have left. I understand why now. Read the rest of this entry »
April 13th, 2013
Gin Pit was a coal mine operating on the Lancashire Coalfield from the 1840s, close to Wigan, in Tyldesley, Greater Manchester. Gin Pit’s name suggests it, or a predecessor, had horse driven winding gear and was on the site of even older coal workings. The colliery was isolated from roads resulting in the building of a narrow gauge tramway worked by horses to transport coal from the pit to the Bridgewater Canal. It is now however the name of our latest beer. Read the rest of this entry »
April 13th, 2013
THE CROOKE HALL INN – MINI BEER FESTIVAL – 26th – 27th APRIL 2013
On Friday 26th and Saturday 27th April the Crooke Hall Inn will be holding a Mini Beer Festival.
The Beer Festival will showcase 20+ Real Ales in conjunction with music from local bands on both nights playing in a large marquee specially erected on the Crooke Hall Inn car park.
Beers featured will include from Hawkshead Brewery, Dark Star of Brighton, Boggart Hole Clough, Copper Dragon, Abbeydale, Acorn, Blakemere, Titanic, Acorn, York, Black Edge, Southport, plus beers from Prospect and Thwaites and others plus beers from All Gates. Detailed beer list to follow. Read the rest of this entry »
April 6th, 2013
Well not so much a post-mortem but a living autopsy, as the Road to Wigan Beer – Festival is still on-going; it finishes tomorrow. The Festival has been a huge success – so much so that the 11 day festival was only a 6 day festival in The Anvil & Victoria pubs, they having run out of festival beers early. A few beers remain in our other pubs but all will have finished by Monday/Tuesday. The festival was helped with good Easter weather, cold but at least dry with Cumulus Mancunia staying away for the holiday break and by Wigan’s Rugby League & Football teams been at home on Good Friday & Easter Saturday. Read the rest of this entry »
March 29th, 2013
As I said recently Captain John H. Behan & ebuzzing rankings, this blog is presently not all I want it to be, given the lack of posts and I needed to make a real effort. Also that I had several part finished works and would dig them out, polish and post them but make no apologies if some were old news. This is one although I have updated it to tie in a couple of recent news stories from the States.
These are Berrong on Beer’s – Why I drink good beer led by the news that in late February a class action lawsuit had been filed against Anheuser-Busch InBev, claiming that several of the company’s beers had been watered down. Regardless of the outcome of the lawsuit would anyone notice, would it affect the taste of the beer, and actually does anyone give a shit! And “Craft breweries pushing boundaries of flavors, tastes” from the Daily Herald. Read the rest of this entry »