Neil at Eating isn’t Cheating has been pondering cloudy beer and generating a bit of a brouhaha in the process. We’re quite interested in this discussion because, recently, we’ve seen just evidence of how terrified people are of cloudy beer.
We were in one of our favourite local pubs a few weeks ago when a new cask of something exciting came on. The landlord couldn’t coax a clear pint from it. We were so keen to taste it, however, that we begged him to serve us a half even if it was cloudy.
“It will make you sick. No, I’m not serving you that,” he said.
“It’s only yeast,” we said. “Honestly, we don’t mind.”
“As long as you’ve got plenty of bog roll at home,” he replied. He let us have it but clearly thought we were insane.
All the chaps round the bar agreed. “I wouldn’t drink that. Cloudy beer gives you a gippy gut.” They watched us drink it with appalled looks on their faces. We felt like we were on Jackass.
Of course, the beer tasted fine (if yeasty…) and, no, it didn’t make us ill. Nor did a shot of yeast sediment from a bottle of Hopus in Bruges for that matter.
So, yes, we think those few brewers who decide that they prefer the flavour of a beer without finings will find it’s an uphill struggle to sell it to most British punters. It’s not just a matter of taste: it’s a taboo.
Postcript: we tried the cloudy beer clear, as the brewer intended, a few days later and it was even better.