Thursday, 12 June 2008

Tetley Still doing the Biz

My fellow blogger Tyson describes me, bizarrely, as "eye candy". Well I might have been twenty odd years ago, but now I am merely overwhelmingly attractive. He has detailed our night out last night on his blog and also mentioned that I drank a few pints of Tetley Bitter. Now I drank a lot of that way back in the day, though mostly the version that was brewed by Walkers of Warrington, not Tetley of Leeds. It was the same recipe though. That recipe prevails now and it is still a delicious, bitter-sweet beer of considerable character. I enjoyed it immensely.

Alas the Warrington Brewery in Dallam Lane has long gone and the Leeds Brewery is under threat from those perpetual under achievers Carlsberg. In the meantime, the brewery founded by Joshua Tetley in 1832 still churns out decent beer from a big beer factory. I passed it today when on my way for a haircut. When on top form it is delicious. Don't believe me? I could say "try it and see", but I kind of assume that.

Instead I'll say "trust me on this one."

You might also like to try the light and dark mild from this brewery. Top notch too.

PS. Back then it was Tetley Bitter, not Tetley's Bitter!

12 comments:

Tyson said...

Well, I didn't actually call you, eye candy. I said that it would be nice to have some along. But as I got blown out, I had to take what was available.

Obviously you aren't eye candy, but prime Scotish beef :)

Rednev said...

The last time I had a pint of Tetley bitter that I could say I enjoyed was in the early 1990s. Now it's just another boring beer, like John Smith's cask or Barnsley bitter, and it usually seems to have an unpleasant chemical taste to me. And I have tried it, most recently in a GBG-listed pub in Southport last month. I find the mild is acceptable, but not great.

Tandleman said...

Tyson - Eye candy or sex icon? The same point applies. I am just happy to get an honourable mention.(-;

Rednev - I don't agree though I did say "when on top form". I have had a few top form pints recently and have mentioned it on this blog. It can be a little thin at times but what you say is a chemical taste is likely to be that distinct Tetley house taste that I remember so well. It was that that made it a beer worth drinking then. And now, proviso underlined.

Paul Garrard said...

My first introduction to mild was in a Tetleys pub on the outskirts of Leeds in the 1970s. It was a culture shock to me at the time as everyone was drinking the stuff, not a pint of bitter in sight. Then to compound the shock you didn't take your glasses back for more they gave you fresh glasses!
I remember wondering why everybody back home didn't drink such wonderful beer (which interestingly didn't come with much of a head). I remember going back to Bury and ordering a mild and realising why they didn't.

Rednev said...

It really is a case of one man's meat being another man's poison ~ and that's not a reference to prime Scotch beef. I was booed at CAMRA conference two years ago when I made clear my views of Tetley bitter in a speech. I think perhaps I laid it on rather thick.

Greene King claim they have taken Tetley's crown of the best-selling cask beer brand in Britain with their IPA, compared to real Tetley bitter and excluding the smooth version. Do we know whether this is true?

Tandleman said...

Shouldn't be surprised.

Stonch said...

I have only known of one pub in London selling Tetley Bitter from casks: The Griffin on Clerkenwell Road. It's strip club. Sadly they ripped out the handpump last year.

Gazza Prescott said...

I always preferred the Walkers version, to me it had an extra fruitiness which elevated the dry bitterness of the Leeds beer to a higher level. Saying that, maybe it was because Walkers was the Tetley we always got and so I was used to it being a Cheshire lad?

Whatever, IMO it's rubbish now.

a swift one... said...

Thankfully Leeds has a far better brewery now!

Tandleman said...

Gazza I said when on form and when it is, I enjoy it. I often drink it with Tony Allen of Phoenix. He rates it too, so I feel better for that!

mtskull said...

Tetley Bitter hasn't been the same since the late nineties, when the recipe was changed in order to overcome problems with the beer losing its flavour when served at the cooler temperatures that were becoming the norm. The new recipe achieved this but something was lost in the process.
Since production was transferred to Wolverhampton the product has become all but unrecognisable; My local has ceased stocking what was once their most popular ale, because nobody drinks it any more.

ronntenn said...

When would Tetley's Bitter have cost 20p a pint in West Yorkshire clubs?
I have an old flyer for a P.J.Proby show at the Wakefield Theatre Club. Admission was £2. I just cannot work out the year he did a show there.