I was so looking forward to our first Session. This month’s challenge was to blog about a local brewery or brew, perhaps to act as a guide to tourists or visitors to your town. Living in London, we have a great choice of beer brewed within 150 miles, and we could (we excitedly thought) even extend our options further by opting for somewhere near Bailey’s original manor (Somerset).
Alas, it wasn’t to be. A tough day at work rounded off a stressful week, and before we knew it, we were in a middle-of-the-road pub (Greene King!!) drinking for the sake of drinking. OK, so I’m pretty sure it’s within 150 miles, but I wouldn’t particularly recommend it to tourists.
Still, this led naturally onto a friday night curry, which for us means a bottle of fantastic Lion Stout. I cannot get over how delicious this beer is. The most remarkable thing is the incredibly long and rich aftertaste, although I also find the dark beige head very appealing. It’s 8%, treacley without being sickly, roasted without being overly bitter – it’s dessert and coffee in one sweet decadent glass.
Of course, if you’re a Londoner you can’t get much less local than Sri Lanka…
Find out about the origins of beer-blogging Friday on Appellation Beer
Link to Gastronomic Fight Club, host of this month’s session.
The British Guild of Beer Writers reports on a recent “tasting event” at the Bombay Brasserie in London. Eminent beer experts got together for a curry and tried to work out which beers went best with spicy foods. Their recommendations are here.
Rupert Ponsonby, co-founder of the Beer Academy comments:
What this tasting hopefully shows is the potential for Britain’s 8,500 curry restaurants to look seriously at developing beer lists to inspire their customers and to match with their cuisine. This is a fantastic commercial and marketing opportunity for them. Top Michelin-starred restaurants such as Le Gavroche, Le Manoir aux Quatre Saisons and Aubergine have already taken the lead in creating inspired beer lists, and it will be wonderful to see top Indian restaurants doing the same.
On a visit to the Cinnamon Club last year, I was appalled to find that the only beer they had available was Cobra lager. Cobra’s OK – nicer than you’d expect, is what I mean, for a mass-produced lager made in Bedford – but surely not anywhere near as posh as the food, the wine or the waiters? Ms. Boak visited one of Gary Rhodes’ restaurants in the City of London last year, too, and was similarly disappointed by the lack of any beer, never mind a beer list.
Of course, my local curryhouse, which is very cheap and cheerful, is run by Sri Lankans, and they sell wonderful Lion Stout. It’s not a perfect beer to drink with a curry, but it’s a great one to have as a dessert. So, posher isn’t always better for beer lovers.