So its goodbye to him. Kelly Ryan that is. Thornbridge brewer, gentleman, scholar and acrobat and possibly the greatest New Zealander since Edmund Hillary, though whether you can compare mountains and beer, we'll leave to one side. That and the fact that I don't really know of many other peeps from NZ, famous or otherwise.
On Saturday I had a pint of Lumford, which while maybe not the masterpiece that Kipling and Jaipur are, was a pretty good beer. I am sure Kelly's legacy will live on though, in the fine beers he designed and in the memories of all of us beer bloggers. But memories of a person (he's not dead though I must emphasise) have to be personal, so I'll think about him now against the background of the perfect cask of Jaipur that I experienced in the Regal Moon on Saturday 14th August this year and blogged about here. It was as near a perfect beer as I've had all year and though I'm not a brewer, I'm pretty sure that's how Kelly will want to be thought of, as he looks forward to being upside down and being catapulted back in time by 20 years or so, by to returning to his native soil.
And from my point of view, he knows how to brew a decent drop of cask. Keep that up when you go home and that will be splendid and it is worth mentioning that he brews better beers than Brewdog. That makes him an even eggier all round good egg. So Good Luck for the future Mate.
I claim a connection too. My lass works for Jim Harrison's wife Emma. Jim is the Thornbridge owner.
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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