We came up with 16 proper blog posts in a busy July. First, the highlights:
→ At the very beginning of the month, we looked into the history of a single remarkable pub — the Samuel Whitbread on Leicester Square, London, which went from flagship to dump in a little over a decade.
→ Taking part in the judging at a home brewing competition gave us just the slightest inkling of the difficulties inherent in the process.
→ And two related posts generated plenty of discussion. The first was a plea for greater tolerance of other people’s preferences; and the second set out what we can actually be bothered to drink these days. (Alan McLeod responded, as did his occasional writing partner Max Bahnson.)
And the rest:
→ It’s the time of year when we usually list our favourite Cornish beers and pubs, but, this time, we decided just to focus on Falmouth’s emerging beer ‘scene’.
→ For last month’s Session we turned up a note of Napoleon’s desire to grow hops in Egypt to keep his armies supplied with beer as they marched.
→ We pondered on comments from a distributor about the price of craft beer: “Everyone, including me, is begging them for a few bottles here, a keg there, so they’ve got absolutely no incentive to offer discounts.”
→ There were many books we relied up on when writing Brew Britannia — this reading list highlights some of the most important.
→ Observing friends, we noted that, for some people, ‘localness’ is enough to sell a beer.
→ Drifting off our own turf, we wondered if the Utopian tendency in mid-20th century architecture was part of the same urge that drove Watney’s et al — “Knock down those old hovels!”
→ Turning our attention to lager, for a project which we’re tentatively calling The Gambrinus Waltz, we considered some modern-incarnations of Vienna beer.
→ Then, a few days later, we compared the spread of German beer in the 19th century with the spread of American craft beer (namely Stone’s move into Germany) in the last decade.
→ After a couple of years of yearning, we finally got to try Batham’s Best Bitter as a side benefit of our trip to Birmingham.
→ Having used it as a symbol of the growth of ‘craft beer’ in the UK, we popped back to Bristol to check on progress at Small Bar.