Yesterday's lunch break saw another new beer for me. Plain Stout from Messrs Maguire in Dublin was dry, slightly sour, with some good roast malt body, but it lacked a good shot of bittering hops to make it a classic stout. Still, decent enough though.
Oldham Beer Festival is now more or less ready. Yesterday I vented and tapped around 75 casks. There are some great beers there and the hall was 12 degrees when I left last night. Not bad. Given the limits I operate within, the beer will be as good as it can be. This isn't ideal cask conditioning and my cellar practices have to be modified, but the beer will be cool and in good condition, at least to start with. That's that's the truth of beer festivals. Beer on gravity inevitably declines quicker than cellar kept beer as its temperature cannot be controlled. High temperatures are the enemy of cask beer. Beer festivals with their conflicting demands of coolness required for beer and warmth for the customer are particularly affected by this simple fact. Frankly those that think beer is best served by gravity are deluded. Nonetheless get there and try some, though I won't be today. I'm off to Liverpool to an old mate's retiral "do".
The photo shows my fellow cellarman Bob behind the stillage with our technical kit on the right
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