News, nuggets and longreads 19 October 2019: Lancashire, language, local

Here’s everything that struck as noteworthy in beer and pubs in the past week, from foeders to the importance of L.

Martyn Cornell has been reflecting on the urge to nitpick over the language people use to talk about beer and brewing:

I had a small Twitter spat yesterday with Duration Brewing after they said they were installing a coolship and foeders at their brewery in Norfolk. A wave of grumpy old mannishness washed across me, and I tweeted that we don’t have coolships and foeders in Britain, we have coolers and vats. Why use a foreign word when we have English words that mean the same thing?


Wetherspoon pub sign, Penzance.

Benjamin Nunn at Ben Viveur is a fan of the Wetherspoon pub chain but not uncritical. In his latest post, he lists five things he likes and five he doesn’t:

3. Collectability. For those of us for whom brewery- and beer-ticking isn’t enough, there’s the challenge of trying to visit all the Spoons. It’s tremendous fun. Some have visited over 1000 and to them I doff my Wethercap. (If you’re even slightly interested in taking up this hobby, SpoonsTracker makes it easy!)


Casked in Rawtenstall.
SOURCE: Duncan Mackay/Pubmeister.

Is Rawtenstall in Lancashire “the Hackney of the north”? Duncan Mackay thinks it might be, unless it’s the other way round:

It’s one of several solid former mill towns that seem to be increasingly attractive to the Manchester diaspora. How else to explain two micropubs, a station bar, a brewery tap, a temperance bar and, wait for it, a nano pub, all doing a brisk trade on a dreich Sunday evening… Two of the above (Hop and Buffer Stops) have graced previous Good Beer Guides…. The new addition is Casked, described as a micropub but really a decent sized beer and gin bar that looks as if it occupies two former shops.


Generic beer pumps in photocopy style.

For The Morning Advertiser Stuart Stone looks into why so many traditional British beers have updated their branding lately, and the importance of branding to consumers more generally:

Hobgoblin’s modern makeover is further vindicated by the fact that 41% of 18 to 25s and 39% of 26 to 35s agree that “I think modern beer brands understand me better as a consumer”, according to Streetbees – with only 14% of each age-group disagreeing with the statement. ­ Is falls to an average of 34% across all age groups and 27% among those aged over 46.

(Note the blooper, though: Georgina Young is head brewer at Bath Ales, a subsidiary of St Austell, not at St Austell proper.)


A nugget from Stan Hieronymus: what if all breweries localness was listed like ABV?

Fullsteam Brewery in North Carolina has made a small change in the signage it uses at beer festivals.

A line that previously read “AUTUMN LAGER festbier, 6% ABV, 99% local” now reads “AUTUMN LAGER festbier, 6% ABV, 99% L.”


Finally, from Twitter, via @teninchwheels:

Stan has retired from link wrangling but do check out Alan McLeod’s Thursday round-up for more good reading.