The Month That Was: March 2016 — Glass Pubs, Blubus, Beer Weeks

Collage of images from March 2016: Blubus Maximus, John Smith's magazines, Wetherspoons, beer weeks.

We took a week off blogging in March to undertake what it tickles us to call ‘field work’ so this is a slightly shorter round up than usual.

→ We kicked off the month with a guest post from etiquette expert R.M. Banks, on the subject of jukeboxes:

The soundest advice is to avoid the deep end of the pool – songs containing full-throated Scandinavian metal screaming, dischord intended to evoke mans inhumanity to man, treated piano, laxative basslines, children’s choirs, and so on. Jukebox songs ought to elicit a tapping of the foot, perhaps a gay whistle, but oughtn’t interfere with the conversation.

→ Our contribution to Session #109 on the subject of porters was to the point: What is porter? And what is it not? (Mark Lindner’s round-up of all the Session posts is here.)

→ We spotted a nice bit of dialogue about beer in a 1960 episode of Hancock’s Half Hour.

→ The fourth and final beer suggested for us by Dina in round one of our ‘Magical Mystery Pour’ project was Wild Beer and Beavertown’s collaboration Blubus Maximus.

hoppy_uk_beer_doodling_840

Where do ideas for new beers, beer styles and sub-styles come from? Direct inspiration, or something in the air?

→ Related to that post was a bit of a thought experiment: can we say most beers on the market today are really just takes on 19th century British pale ale? (Of course not but it was a fun idea to play with.)

→ Does craft beer tend to indulge the modern tendency towards endless childhood? And, if so, does it matter?

→ We reckon the first gambling machine in a pub might have arrived in 1907.

→ Can you help us with memories of gastropubs in the 1990s? (We’re still after responses to this.)

→ Surprising ourselves, we turned out a 2000-word unscheduled #BeeryLongreads entry on the subject of beer weeks in Britain. They’re newer than we thought, and they’re spreading.

Out of shot, two Action Man dolls and a teddy bear, AKA 'the lads'.

→ It’s time to take down the barricades and let the odd old school bitter into the craft beer citadel. (Interesting to re-read this in the wake of CAMRA’s revitalisation project; Matt Curtis has written about the incident that prompted his original Tweet in more detail here.)

→ Via our newly acquired stash of John Smith’s brewery magazines from the late 1960s notes on, and pictures of, a Doncaster pub made of glass. (Martin, AKA Retired Martin, visited recently and shares some impressions here.)

→ Brendan from Leeds asked, ‘Which classic British beers might I have missed?’ and we did our best to answer. (Lots of suggestions from commenters, too.)