The Marble Arch is my Friday night haunt, mainly as I have to pick my better half up at Piccadilly Station and the pub is handily on the way home. For those who don't know it, it is a splendid tiled affair with lots of marble. Hence the name! It also has its own brewery which produces award winning organic and other beers.*
Given that I was driving, I had to choose my limited beers carefully. First up was JP Best, Champion beer of Manchester. I know this beer. I chaired the preliminary tasting panel that led to it being declared the ultimate winner in the Manchester Food and Drink awards. It rightly came top in our panel. Last night's sample was disappointing and I struggled with my half. That's cask beer for you! I also tried Janine's One which was hoppy and moreish. My usual tipple, the dry and hoppy Manchester Bitter was not available. The star of the show for me however was "Stouter Stout". A roasty, jet black, bitter and dry stout of 4.7%. This was an incredibly good stout and worth a visit to the pub just to sample it.
Also available for purchase by the 33cl bottle was "Decadence" an organic bottle conditioned Imperial Russian Stout of 8.2%. At a whopping £4.50 a bottle, I put the evil moment of purchase off until I am back, with no car and my pockets loosened by drink!
*Until recently the Marble Arch Brewery only produced organic beers, but a sign now tells customers that the soaring cost of organic ingredients has necessitated a change in policy.
The Marble Arch Pub and Brewery is at 73 Rochdale Road, Manchester. M4 4HY
A bit of a CV. Tandleman is a veteran beer lover, local CAMRA Chairman and activist, beer writer, beer reviewer and pursuer of all things good in beer. He lives in the North West of England and London. Despite his CAMRA membership, he does not limit himself to cask conditioned beer, though he believes that cask conditioning, when done correctly and appropriately, brings a quality to beer that is hard to equal by any other kind of presentation. He is a strong supporter of Northern methods of beer dispense and avidly detests poorly presented beer and dislikes pasteurisation. He regularly visits Germany, has conducted corporate British and German beer tastings for CAMRA at the Great British Beer Festival where he has worked for years on Biere Sans Frontieres and was Deputy Organiser at CAMRA's very successful National Winter Ales Festival in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 and at the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival from 2013 to date. He admires good brewers wherever they are and has travelled extensively in pursuit of good beer to drink. He also judges beer at both the International Beer Challenge and the World Beer Awards.
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