Friday, 28 June 2013
I do a bit of beer judging when I am invited to do so. It is usually interesting and enjoyable, though depending on organisation and what you are actually asked to taste, it can be a bit of a slog. Like many things it is what you make it and there is the bonus of meeting fellow judges, both old friends and colleagues and new. In fact that is, if truth be told, often the best part of it
More interesting were the specialty beers and of course, IPAs and Double IPAs. These varied between delicious - remarkably few - and "What the heck was the brewer thinking of?" - many. I didn't judge stouts or porters which is a pity, but talking to fellow judges, they had mized fortunes with them too. It seems that no matter how many beers are produced, they all find a home where someone loves them. That's beer for you, but those that are really good, do rise to the top. Afterwards we gathered in the bar for a drink and a chat. Oddly you may think, the beer of choice fo most judges was Tankovna Pilsner Urquell. I think the White Horse is the first UK venue for this technique which is meant to give much fresher beer. The lovely shiny tanks certainly make a very handsome feature in the bar I must say.
As I looked around, I reckon that 90% of the judges were supping tankovna beer. A compliment indeed to PU and a deserved one. It was nearly as good as that served to me in Prague just a few weeks ago. The main difference was the serving technique which lacked the panache of the single pour that is typical of Prague pubs.
Oh and the price. At £4.80 a pint, it was a dear do. But it was good.
Reflecting on the day, the best part really was meeting up with beery people either anew or once again, but the beer judging was great fun too, but hard work.