On the first Thursday in March, I (Brad) joined up with a fine gentleman by the name of Tim Frost for a beer tasting at the Goods Shed. (You all know Tim from such posts as this and this.) The tasting is put on after hours by the Bottle Shop, one of the merchants at the Goods Shed, and was run by the shop’s owner, Andrew Morgan. Andrew was an excellent guide, and had a lovely selection of beers lined up for our crew. A total of 10 brave folk attended.
Tim and I arrived a bit early, and took the opportunity to have a pre-tasting beer while we waited. (Tim also helped his better half Emilie pack up her wares after a day of selling treats at the Goods Shed.) We inspired one of the other participants, who’s working with Andrew above to find the perfect pre-tasting beer.
Here’s the lineup for the evening — quite a deal for £15!
I’ll spare you my tasting impressions, and focus on the hard facts. From left to right, the order in which we sampled, we have:
- Moor beer company’s Illusion, a lovely “Black IPA” — an IPA made with a mixture of traditional and dark malts. (4.5%)
- Bear Republic’s Hop Rod Rye, an American-style IPA with 18% rye malt. (8%)
- Mikkeller Weizenbock, a wheat bock brewed in Belgium by Danish gypsy brewer Mikkel Borg Bjergsø. (8.5%)
- Thornbridge Brewery’s Coalition Old Ale, two years in the cask. (7%)
- Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche Doppelbock, made with oak-smoked malt. (8%)
- Harvey’s Prince of Denmark, an Imperial Stout. (8%)
- Flying Dog’s Gonzo Imperial Porter. (9.2%)
Andrew did a very nice job of introducing and explaining each of the beers, and provided some background and history on the styles and breweries. At one point, this required giving the assembled crowd a short seminar on American drinking habits, using TGI Fridays to make his point. (Not exactly a proud moment, made worse by Tim’s outing me.) While I really enjoyed the evening’s beers, I kept thinking fondly of the pre-tasting beer I’d shared with Tim: Brodie’s Black IPA (7%). A number of those followed me home, along with a handful of other interesting beers, thanks to the 10% discount on purchases for participants. Note that we sampled quite a few strong beers. I am, once again, relieved to be in a country with excellent public transportation!
Here are some photos from the evening. (Tim’s on the left, below.)
The next morning I took the kids across the street to Windy Corner Cafe for brunch. There’s rarely a menu — you just ask for things and they make them. I made a vague suggestion of eggs with a bit of sausage. The woman at the counter said “maybe some bacon…”. I said sure, and was presented with the stunning full breakfast below! Too much beer followed by a greasy brunch — if not for the kids, I’d have thought I was back in college again…