[drinking] Ales

Guvnor

The Guvnor
Staff member
#1
My favourite beer, and don't worry there will be a wine and spirits thread along later, is IPA.
It's possibly the high hops content, the refreshing nature of the taste, or possibly that as a teenager it was Working Men's Club CIU IPA that leads me to this.
I didn't drink for almost two and a half decades and when I started up it coincided with the end of one of my best research projects. Afterwards we went to a pub in Brussels called Delirum Tremens and I discovered that the Belgians had discovered IPA, left it alone for a while in a monastery and came up with nectar rocket fuel 9.5-10.5 alcohol IPAs. I drank 3 330ml glasses and floated home..
Shortly thereafter I went to the States and spent time in San Diego and found that the Yanks, who in my lifetime to date had only brewed dishwater, had adopted microbreweries, Belgian brewing techniques, British beers and mixed in a touch of West Coast madness. They have gypsy brewers, not even remotely Romani, but peripatetic, moving from microbrewery to microbrewery, working their magic and moving on.
So, I love an IPA. I'm fond of a red or ruby ale, which won't surprise anyone who's met the wife [she's a redhead], and I'll even look at a blonde on a summer's day.. but.. and here's the but.. there is the call of the Darkness:

the Black IPA

First sighted by me in a pub in Whitechapel, and for long only a rumour in the North, Black IPA combines the velvet chocolate flavour of a porter with the high hops content and edge of an IPA, it's like a bar of chocolate with a slice of hop like lemon. Black IPA (aka Cascadian Dark Ale, India Black Ale, or Vermont Porter) is in my mind, the drink of trolls and uruk-hai as they howl to the moon and gather their worgs to the fire..

So, what's your tipple?
 
#2
As I have spent the majority of the 21st century working in real ale pubs this thread immediately spoke to me! I don't generally prefer one style over another, so my hypothetical top ten would most likely contain IPAs but also golden bitters, a ruby red and even a locally-brewed stout.
 
#4
Ha ha! I was gonna start a thread like this!

The last pint I had on Saturday was Hop House 13 from Guinness. If you have not tried it, it is a hopped larger. Sorry, not exactly Cask Ale. However, that will be remedied when I visit the local beer festival on Saturday.
 

Guvnor

The Guvnor
Staff member
#7
Yeah, that's what I heard from your post, and I shall try it accordingly.. even as a non UK lager drinker..
 
R

ragr

Guest
#9
My two closest pubs don't have a great selection as one is a Shepheard Neame where the Spitfire is okay and the other, whilst a freehouse has Fullers and a couple of guest ales; weirdly, Doom Bar from 375 miles away. Sometimes the guest ales are good, however and Colchester Number 1 is from only 20 miles away and is decent.

I will say that my regular summer bolthole in Cornwall has a very nearby pub full of character and ales from the Tintagel Brewery 5 miles up the road. The standard ales are good enough but Harbour Special and Merlin's Muddle are two premium ales that I look forward to on each visit; I just love that local thing.

 

Guvnor

The Guvnor
Staff member
#10
I've seen Doom Bar everywhere from Dorset to the Lakes to Scotland. Obviously travels well.
That's a nice label and name, that Summer Lightning, how is it Darran?
 
R

ragr

Guest
#14
Currently quaffing: Gem by Bath Ales. Bitter-sweet and 4.8%.

EDIT; not bad at all but a way off the pace as a favourite.
 
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#15
I'm off to a beer festival today. I'll pick a beer out that was the best of the day. My favourite tipple is London Porter from the Mad Squirrel Brewery, formally the Red Squirrel Brewery (until it was renamed to appeal to the hipsters).
 
#17
My choice has to be Abbot at the moment.
I'm a fan of stronger ciders (usually Aspalls or Henry Weston, sometimes Old Rosie) and recently got into drinking ale. The fact that Spoons sells Abbot at £2.55 a bottle and that it's 5% is what brought me to it. Our local spoons regularly has guest ales on tap and I've tried a few, one "very dark" and I wasn't a fan of that at all. I suppose Guest doesn't always equal Good :p

I will say that my regular summer bolthole in Cornwall has a very nearby pub full of character and ales from the Tintagel Brewery 5 miles up the road. The standard ales are good enough but Harbour Special and Merlin's Muddle are two premium ales that I look forward to on each visit; I just love that local thing.

Blergh, I'd recognise that bar anywhere after the last time.
 
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