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Is it all it's cracked up to be?

 

I like the Camden Pils and their pale ale as I like the Brewdog IPA, Brooklyn Brewery Lager, Sierra Navada Pale Ale...

 

Tried a sour ale recently and it was rank although they have a rising following. The Jester IPA in Marks and Sparks was nicely balanced and refreshing.

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I was a bit late to the party, I have to say. I think in the early days people were lapping up a glut of shit as long as it had a funky graphic design and was brewed in a cool, hipster location. 

 

It's still a bit hit and miss and a lot of indie brewers still go way too far with the hops but I do enjoy a good pale ale. Sierra Nevada probably the best. 

 

Not just craft beer though now is it. Craft gin is massive now and apparently rum is set to go down the same path.

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Think the 'craft beer' revolution has been generally good but the trouble is you'll go in a lot of places now and they have about 8 beers on tap and 7 are a variant of IPA.

I like gin but I don't quite get it with the recent huge amount of craft producers because it either tastes very similar to mass produced 'quality gins' like Tanqueray Ten or they go down the route of adding unusal botanicals / spices with the result that it doesn't even taste like gin.

Rum is a really interesting spirit and should probably be treated the same way as cognac and whisky. The trouble with it is both a lack of understanding and regulation because it's produced in so many different countries. A lot of it is basically a total rip off with stuff like Pyrat and lots of the South American stuff being marketed as 'super premium' when in fact it's a fairly basic product in those cases which has had loads of sugar added (and orange flavouring with Pyrat).

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11 minutes ago, Alex said:

Ridiculous snobbery that though, don't you think? Unless it tastes different now

It tastes the same. The IPA just vanishes so fast when you're thirsty.

 

The Brooklyn Brewery lager has really taken off here when you bear in mind the competition. Pricey though.

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Schiehallion's a good one. A 'craft lager' as they put it. Sits somewhere between a normal quality pilsner and an IPA (not as heavily hopped). Must admit I very raely drink beer unless I'm out and I don't go out very often.

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8 minutes ago, Alex said:

Think the 'craft beer' revolution has been generally good but the trouble is you'll go in a lot of places now and they have about 8 beers on tap and 7 are a variant of IPA.

I like gin but I don't quite get it with the recent huge amount of craft producers because it either tastes very similar to mass produced 'quality gins' like Tanqueray Ten or they go down the route of adding unusal botanicals / spices with the result that it doesn't even taste like gin.

Rum is a really interesting spirit and should probably be treated the same way as cognac and whisky. The trouble with it is both a lack of understanding and regulation because it's produced in so many different countries. A lot of it is basically a total rip off with stuff like Pyrat and lots of the South American stuff being marketed as 'super premium' when in fact it's a fairly basic product in those cases which has had loads of sugar added (and orange flavouring with Pyrat).

 

That's spot on with the craft gin. As long as it has a juniper base it can qualify as a gin but some of them have all kinds of botanicals, and be spicy or sweet. Not just about the London dry style anymore. So there's a lot of crap out there but I quite like the Spanish influence with the wide rimmed copa glasses and creative use of garnishes. A few years ago Hendricks and a by of cucumber was the height of sophistication but there's all sorts on the market now. Gin bars are popping up all over the place in London, some of which offer 500 different types of gin and 30 tonics! This is all a bit of a head scratcher for the London dry purists.

 

But the story behind the craft gin explosion is interesting. It all goes back to the gin law of the 1700s, which was overturned in 2009 when Sipsmith won a legal battle with HMRC for a license to operate. Small batch distilleries were banned during the London gin craze of the 1700s because people were losing their minds on mother's ruin and - more importantly - home distilleries weren't being taxed. So the government said it could only be produced on an industrial scale. Since 2009 you've had this massive increase in the number of small gin distilleries open, due to the change in law, but driven by the hipster trend for craft products made by local, indie producers. 

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There's gin bars distilling their own stuff sprung up in Newcastle. I do quite like it but a bottle of decent gin would last me months as it's not something I would drink unless I'm in the mood. A decent bottle of rum or whisky is lucky to last a weekend sometimes.

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1 minute ago, The Mighty Hog said:

I've dabbled with craft stuff, enjoy an IPA but have found myself drifting towards stouts and porters. Flash House do a line called Shy Bairns Get Stout and I've really enjoyed the coffee one.

Saw that in the Town Wall the other week. Good name like :D

 

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Thats what caught my attention, clever name. I think they are up to SBGS 5, they're making one with MMM Glugg from the Granger market that has chipotle chilli's in there. Granger market is a canny place to just have a wander about now, so different from when I was a kid. Criminally under promoted.

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1 minute ago, The Mighty Hog said:

Thats what caught my attention, clever name. I think they are up to SBGS 5, they're making one with MMM Glugg from the Granger market that has chipotle chilli's in there. Granger market is a canny place to just have a wander about now, so different from when I was a kid. Criminally under promoted.

Aye I haven't been in there much of late but it is good. Used to pop in MMM...Deli and also went just after they'd opened Glugg. That coffee place in there is nice too. I hope it still has the imaginatively named Cheap Tab Shop in there though. Also remember the second hand book shop which sold multi packs of used porn mags. Nice

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19 minutes ago, Alex said:

Aye I haven't been in there much of late but it is good. Used to pop in MMM...Deli and also went just after they'd opened Glugg. That coffee place in there is nice too. I hope it still has the imaginatively named Cheap Tab Shop in there though. Also remember the second hand book shop which sold multi packs of used porn mags. Nice

 

A treasure trove to a 13 year old :lol:

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2 hours ago, Alex said:

Aye I haven't been in there much of late but it is good. Used to pop in MMM...Deli and also went just after they'd opened Glugg. That coffee place in there is nice too. I hope it still has the imaginatively named Cheap Tab Shop in there though. Also remember the second hand book shop which sold multi packs of used porn mags. Nice

Multi packs just because they were stuck together?

 

Fucking hate any kind of ale so I'm not sure why I checked out this thread but I'll happily give any Gin or Rum a good drink.  I do like Decantus on Grey Street for a G&T.

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47 minutes ago, David Kelly said:

Multi packs just because they were stuck together?

 

Fucking hate any kind of ale so I'm not sure why I checked out this thread but I'll happily give any Gin or Rum a good drink.  I do like Decantus on Grey Street for a G&T.

Could you have imagined saying that to your mates 5 years ago? :D

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