Everything We Wrote in June 2018: RATs, Beavers, Kittens


June was hot and hectic, and yet somehow we managed 20 posts here and 13 over on the Patreon feed.

There was also the usu­al bar­rage of Tweets, bits and pieces on Insta­gram and Face­book, and 1000+ words of exclu­sive stuff in the newslet­ter. (We don’t nor­mal­ly make those pub­licly view­able but this one is, if you want to see the kind of thing we write about.)

The month began, as they so often do, with a con­tri­bu­tion to the Ses­sion, this time on the sub­ject of farm­house brew­ing. The fun thing about the Ses­sion is how often we think we have noth­ing to say but start typ­ing any­way and… Oh, there’s a thing.

You can read a round-up of all the entries at Brew­ing in a Bed­sit­ter.

The first of this mon­th’s Pub Life posts records a con­ver­sa­tion between bar staff on impor­tant philo­soph­i­cal ques­tions: are zebras black with white stripes, or white with black? (Do check out the hilar­i­ous­ly (know­ing­ly) lit­er­al com­ments on this post…)

Some­one asked if we knew any­thing about ‘lant­ed ale’ – that is, beer pepped up with the addi­tion of urine. Sounds dis­gust­ing, right? And maybe it would be if there was any evi­dence of it actu­al­ly hav­ing ever hap­pened.

The King's Head -- collage.

The mon­th’s big fea­ture piece was our guide to drink­ing in Bris­tol which since post­ing we’ve been able to use to answer sev­er­al queries on that sub­ject by email. The feed­back from Bris­to­lians has so far been pret­ty pos­i­tive – yes, every­one has their own pref­er­ences, and of course we omit­ted some peo­ple’s favourites, but we don’t seem to have utter­ly embar­rassed our­selves.

Anoth­er slice of Pub Life: a man in a cat T‑shirt con­nects with a woman eager to buy a kit­ten.

Hipsters in the pub.

Oh, or maybe our Q&A with Dav­ey Jones, cre­ator of the Real Ale Twats strip for Viz, was the big fea­ture? It was cer­tain­ly our most-read piece this month and, grat­i­fy­ing­ly, was shared fair­ly wide­ly beyond the beer world:

I’ve always been a fan of the band Half Man Half Bis­cuit and they had done a song called ‘CAMRA Man’ which made me want to draw a strip along those lines. It’s got lyrics like “Week­end vin­tage car show, Dr Who afi­ciona­do” and so on…

We had a lit­tle debate over some unin­ten­tion­al­ly cloudy ale in a pub and wrote it up as an exam­ple of the odd things that pub man­agers and pub­li­cans do some­times dri­ven by tar­gets and mar­gins.

For ‘Beer Day Britain’ we put togeth­er a found poem based on search­ing the Tweets of peo­ple we fol­low for the phrase “British beer”:

The Great British Beer Hunt —
Jester, Ernest, Oli­cana and Godi­va
On a rail replace­ment bus.

Beer and queu­ing —
A British thing in a British sta­di­um,
A beer at the British Muse­um.

When news of the Beaver­town-Heineken deal broke our Twit­ter men­tions went mad. We did­n’t have much to say but thought it worth mak­ing some sort of… Ugh… state­ment, maybe? It’s brief, any­way, and plays down our mys­tic pow­ers of pre­dic­tion, but got plen­ty of traf­fic despite protes­ta­tions all round that peo­ple were bored of the top­ic.

Cornish cliffsides.

We real­ly liked the Cor­nish Sai­son St Austell are brew­ing for Marks & Spencer.

(Via Twit­ter Roger Ryman, St Austel­l’s head brew­er, con­firmed that the can does put a lim­it on car­bon­a­tion lev­els, and adds that the fil­tered clar­i­ty was at the request of the cus­tomer.)

By way of a break from think­ing about Beaver­town we spared a few words to reflect on the state of Brew­Dog’s brand in 2018no longer a sign of craft beer cred­i­bil­i­ty but mere­ly one of the usu­al cash-n-car­ry sus­pects.

Wine glasses.

Brut IPA is the cur­rent big buzz which got us think­ing about how long peo­ple have been com­par­ing beer to Cham­pagne (spoil­er: for a long time) and why.

An indul­gence – an exer­cis­ing of the cre­ative mus­cles: a cou­ple of hun­dred words on the ways we play with our beer in the pub, from wip­ing the sides of the glass to dip­ping fin­gers in the foam.

There’s a pub in Kei­th Water­house­’s 1959 nov­el Bil­ly Liar – “an enor­mous drink­ing bar­racks”, new­ly built, where peo­ple dis­placed from cor­ner pubs in demol­ished slums drink mild beneath sal­vaged nick-nacks.

Those Patre­on posts: week­end beer reports 1, 2, 3, 4 | Reg­gie Per­rin and the right wing­ness of real ale | back­ground notes on the Bris­tol pub guide | notes on pur­su­ing reluc­tant inter­vie­wees | our piece from BEER on GBG pub crawlers | how’s our dri­ving? | Pub Life: Mor­ris­men | a call for help with News Nuggets | advance notice of Tripel-Off beers | Beaver­town, Beaverex and the pol­i­tics of brew­eries with­draw­ing | poll: which Tripel is bet­ter, X or Y?

There were also sev­er­al round-ups of news, nuggets and lon­greads:

If you’ve enjoyed some or all of that you can encour­age us to keep it up by sub­scrib­ing via Patre­on, buy­ing us a pint via Ko-Fi, or buy­ing, rat­ing or review­ing one of our books.