My ongoing central heating problems have been driving me to obsession, but a welcome distraction was offered yesterday. I don't drink that much during the week, but a suggestion from my mate John of a quick afternoon pint seemed to me to be just the thing to chase away the blues.
The venue was the ever excellent Baum in Rochdale. I spotted Acorn Green Bullet on the bar and made a bee line for it. I wasn't disappointed. The excellent body, lingering resinous hoppiness and insistent bitterness throughout was just what I needed. John was drinking Shipyard Independence Ale which he rated highly. I had a taste. Damn good. Simon the owner couldn't say who brewed it, but thanks to Rabidbarfly and Tyson, I know now it is brewed by the Shipyard brewer Alan Pugsley at Marstons, though thankfully at Banks' not Burton. No sulphur for me thanks. The story is here if you wish to read it. I had a pint and again it was superb with good hop presence throughout and another lasting hoppy finish. Alas these were just a temporary hiatus in my domestic heating problems.
I returned home to greet my central heating guy who still couldn't make the connection from my controller to the boiler work. Oh for a few more pints of Acorn or Shipyard at that point. Still, I had the compensation of looking back fondly at two superb beers and a pleasant interlude from the irritating obstacles that litter life. It was a reminder too that a quick pint with a mate in a pub, particularly when it is unexpected, gladdens the heart in a way that opening a bottle of beer at home never could.
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.
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