Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Smooth Operator

Didn't I read somewhere recently that smooth beer is getting some kind of makeover? Was it the relaunching of that foul rubbish Caffreys? I think it was. I dislike smooth bitters, as their blandness seems somehow emphasised and not in a good way, by nitogen.  But you know what? I do sort of like - or rather, can just about live with - some smooth beer.

This is brought home to me on quiz nights, as in our leagues, there is a fair sprinkling of both Sam Smith's pubs and some working men's clubs. As a result, they serve smooth beer. I usually have to drive too, so my drink of choice is often smooth mild. Exotic delights such as Chestnut Mild, Sam's Dark Mild, Whitbread Mild, Bass Dark Mild , Hydes and Lees Dark Smooth for example weigh in at around 2.8% - 3.5%, with a lot of them nearer 3%, thus an ideal one for the driver. A couple of pints can be sipped safely over a couple of hours. The beer can often be way too cold, but as I can't have much anyway, I can allow it to warm up a bit, so it ekes it out further.

Not that I wouldn't prefer a cask conditioned version of the same beer presented in top nick, but when you are stuck, it isn't so bad, even as a distress purchase.  Dark milds and stouts somehow tend not to suffer so much from nitrogen dispense and when in London and in Porterhouse Brewing, I am happy to drink my usual nitrogenated Wrassler's XXXX* stout without feeling that it would be better on cask, though obviously I'd love to try it in that form.

Not in London of course. Stout, like mild, without a tight creamy head just isn't the same and they just aren't savvy about that there.

*Of course that is a particularly good beer and not pasteurised, which certainly helps.


Cooking Lager said...

Good god, you drinking smooth, Mudge necking snakebite, Clarkey at the brewdog bar.

I can only compare it to what I have read in the eschatological writings in the three Abrahamic religions. It is I believe the end of days.

Time for me to go neck a cask conditioned pint of proper bitter whilst I await the Day of Judgement!

Bailey said...

I keep finding myself enjoying kegged dark milds. A bit like a refreshing, cold Coca Cola but less sickly and with more oomph.

The Beer Nut said...

I was very surprised to discover cask Wrassler's tastes almost identical to the nitro version.

There is a bottled version which they might have in the London Porterhouse.