Monday, 10 December 2018

The Blog. And BrewDog Cask

I 've been neglecting this for a bit now, largely because I'm to to my eyes in the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival for which I'm Deputy Organiser, but hopefully when all that is out of the way, I'll buck my ideas up a bit.

In the meantime, I forgot to give my views on the return of Brewdog to cask beer via a cask version of Dead Pony Club (3.8%) which I tried at the Draft House in Seething Lane a few weeks ago. Well I say a few weeks, but actually it was 21st November when I was last in London, so not so long ago really.

A couple of things. I wondered if there would be much change in the Draft House offering since Brewdog took them over and first impressions are that nothing much has changed. Maybe a bit more BrewDog on the bar - well definitely that - and possibly a decrease in choice in other areas - but still plenty to go at and all much as before.

I'd previously given up on the rancid cask offering here, preferring by far to drink Tankovna Pilsner Urquell. Many visits and really poor cask had put me off trying, so given that it was a quiet Wednesday afternoon, I wasn't optimistic.  Nonetheless a pint was obtained and duly supped. It was fresh, well conditioned and actually pretty good. With its malty base and hoppy finish, it was a very decent pale ale (or standard bitter since it was in cask form) which I would happily drink again. OK, it didn't set the heather on fire, but I can well understand why BD chose this and I look forward to seeing more (and more adventurous) stuff on cask from them soon, remembering as I do some of the fantastic beers they used to produce. Trashy Blonde (not an acceptable name now I guess) and Alice Porter being two I remember very fondly.

So from me, a qualified "Welcome back" and well done on sorting out the cask quality at the Draft House, though I'll be back later this week to confirm improvement has been maintained.

Don't forget to come along to Manchester Central for the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival. It will be fab and is of course very reasonably priced.

We are having a day out in Winchester on Saturday - so tips for musn't miss pubs welcome.


BryanB said...

Didn't Brewdog come up with its own technology for serving its "live" beers? I wonder if this is either proof that the Brewdod scheme works better than trad casks - or Brewdog simply understanding its own technology better.

Tandleman said...

I think this is just traditional cask. Served via an ordinary handpump.

Anonymous said...

Tips for Winchester pubs:

The Black Boy - one of the quirkiest pubs in the country. The beer is not bad but that's not the main draw. Definitely a must!

Hyde Tavern - Real old school spit and sawdust pub steeped in history.

Queen Inn - Unfortunately owned by GK but one of the ones they allow guest beers in. Usually a good selection and almost always in good nick. Try some Broken Bridge brewery if they have some on. Fantastic local micro.

The Overdraft - Winchester's first and only craft beer bar. Small and not the most comfortable but usually a great selection of beers and it's right in the middle of town.

Red Cat Brewery Taproom. A bit out of town and closes early on a Saturday but worth a trip. Pretty decent beer. On a trading estate so not the most exciting location!

Hope that helps.


Beermunster said...

@BryanB They claim to have invented a process which allows them to serve beer which has conditioned in a key keg.

According to their own blog: "fermented without top pressure, then lightly centrifuged to remove hop debris the beer is packaged and allowed to ferment and condition inside the keg.....the beer is packaged with over 2 million living yeast cells per millilitre and in a container which prevents oxygen ingress. With no extraneous carbon dioxide added it is served on draft at 9.5°C through a sparkler."

How much of that is genuinely novel and how much is marketing spin I don't know.

Citra said...

Regarding Winchester pubs, agree with Black Boy and Hyde Tavern, also The Fulflood Arms is excellent, a little out lying as the best pubs seem to be here but worth the hike.

Anonymous said...

A good piece ...nice to see cask back on the agenda ��
Britain Beermat

Benj65 said...

Another vote here for the return of Alice Porter. Very tasty in the bottle.

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