News, nuggets and longreads 3 August 2019: Apollo, Bass, curation

Pub snacks on display.

These are all the stories about beer and pubs we enjoyed most, or learned the most from, in the past week, from Wetherspoons to museums.

From Jeff Alworth, an epic – a two-parter pon­der­ing the ques­tion of why we like cer­tain beers and dis­like oth­ers:

Let’s try a thought exper­i­ment. Select one of your favorite beers and think about why you like it. If I ask you to tell me the rea­sons, my guess is that you will talk about the type of beer it is and which fla­vors you like. Since you’re read­ing this blog, you might talk about ingre­di­ent or even process (Cit­ra hops! Decoc­tion mash­ing!). If I asked a casu­al drinker, some­one who drinks Mich­e­lob Ultra, say, I’d hear dif­fer­ent rea­sons, but prob­a­bly some­thing along the lines Eliz­a­beth War­ren offered: it’s “the club soda of beers.” No mat­ter one’s lev­el of knowl­edge, our opin­ions about beer appear to come from the liq­uid itself.

Part one | Part two


The carpet at the Imperial, Exeter.

Tan­dle­man has been observ­ing what he calls the “slight­ly tense calm” of ear­ly morn­ing in a Wether­spoon pub:

By 8.50 there is a pal­pa­ble sense of expec­ta­tion in the air. Eyes flick towards the bar. A few more arrive. Min­utes tick away and sud­den­ly there are peo­ple com­ing back to their tables with pints of beer and lager. One ded­i­cat­ed soul has two, which he arranges care­ful­ly in front of him, rims almost touch­ing. Over­all pints are even­ly split between lager and John Smith’s Smooth.


The Apollo Inn
SOURCE: Man­ches­ter Estate Pubs

Stephen Mar­land has turned his nos­tal­gic eye on anoth­er lost Man­ches­ter pub – the top­i­cal­ly named Apol­lo Inn in Cheetham Hill. Con­struc­tion, con­ver­sion, con­fla­gra­tion, col­lapse… The tale is famil­iar.


A recreation of a historic pub.
The River­side Muse­um, Glas­gow.

From our old Pen­zance pal Tehmi­na Goskar comes a piece not about beer but that will per­haps be of inter­est to any­one who’s ever been to a beer event or received a box of beer in the post:

Every­thing is curat­ed these days. We’ve all seen it. The Cura­tor restau­rant, Cura­tors’ snacks, Cura­tor clothes labels, beard cura­tion and even curat­ed ears–which has near­ly 40,000 posts tagged on Insta­gram. By com­par­i­son #muse­um­cu­ra­tor is tagged in 4700 posts. But when is curat­ing, not real­ly curat­ing at all? In this post we explore this ques­tion with muse­um cura­tor Emma King, Direc­tor of the Holo­caust Exhi­bi­tion and Learn­ing Cen­tre and Holo­caust Sur­vivors’ Friend­ship Asso­ci­a­tion at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Hud­der­s­field.


Relat­ed: archives come into their own on #Inter­na­tion­al­Beer­Day.


Bass on Draught plaque outside an English pub.

Ian Thur­man has updat­ed his list of pubs that con­sis­tent­ly sell draught Bass. The text has­n’t changed since he first wrote it last year but is worth revis­it­ing as a heart­felt trib­ute to this cult beer.


This exas­per­at­ed Tweet thread from Beth Dem­mon made us laugh:

There’ll no doubt be more links from Stan Hierony­mus on Mon­day and Alan McLeod is reg­u­lar as clock­work every Thurs­day.

One thought on “News, nuggets and longreads 3 August 2019: Apollo, Bass, curation”

  1. Hmm… not sure about Jef­f’s epic but these days I drink what’s in the fridge out in the yard by myself after almost killing myself through sweaty gar­den­ing. Often what’s in the fridge is what the lad brings home from his brew­ery sum­mer job. And Sam Adams Boston Lager is one of my least favourite com­mon­ly avail­able beers. Don’t most folk just have what’s going and get them­selves to a sup­ply in a shop or a bar that should pro­vide some­thing rea­son­ably in the ball park?

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