This is quite possibly the nicest beer ever.
Several years ago, a mate and I set off on an adventure to Holland. A festival in Holland. Arriving in Calais, we decided to buy cheap beer rather than pay Dutch prices.
This involved a lengthy wait for a wine warehouse to open, since we’d arrived at a ridiculously early hour. Which meant we were pretty tired by the time a warehouse opened.
The choice of wine was impressive. Unfortunately, we couldn’t take glass bottles to the festival and only one brand of beer was on sale for a sensible price.
And that brand was Wanka. It was incredibly cheap and only a month or two out of date. Concerned about our schedule and the possibility of illness due to outdated beer, we left the Wanka beer and continued on our way.
We ended up buying overpriced beer from a Lidl in Belgium, shortly before entering Holland. During our time at the festival, we often talked about Wanka beer, wondering whether we could have avoided the medical tent had we purchased out of date beer.
We did have a great time at the festival, despite having to drink overpriced beer.
Tonight, while in our local corner shop, I spotted some cans of Wanka beer. Except it wasn’t. After telling many people over the years about the Wanka near miss, I now realise that tiredness had led to us mis-reading the can lettering in Calais.
So there’s no such thing as Wanka beer.
After being home a few days, I’m catching-up with things. Last Friday, which already feels like a lifetime ago, we visited this year’s beer festival in Peterborough. It’s allegedly the second largest in the country and entry is free for CAMRA members. Fortunately, my beloved and I are members.
Unfortunately, we’d left our membership cards at home. We’d not actually realised that we’d be in Peterborough during the beer festival. I was made aware on my arrival from London, where I bumped into my beloved’s niece (who asked whether we were there for the festival).
Luckily, a very nice man escorted us through the CAMRA members’ entrance at minimal cost. Well, we really are members. It’d been some time since we’d been to this festival and it seemed larger than on that last occasion. There was certainly a huge range of beer and it was great to see many labelled as unfined or hazy. Usually, I find four or five fishless beers at a beer festival, but there were so many on this occasion that I was only able to work my way through a small proportion of fish-free beer. I’d definitely recommend checking this beer festival out.
Strawberry Camden Hells. I said Strawberry Camden Hells.
In the Ostrich. In Peterborough. A truly great bar.
On discovering a tap takeover in a bar in town, I mailed the brewery to question whether their beer contains fish bits.
I didn’t expect a response until next week, so this was very much forward thinking, but they replied straight away. On a Saturday evening.
We don’t use isinglass in any of our beers so they are all vegetarian friendly. Hopefully you enjoy them!
So I obviously had to go back to try one.
And it was gorgeous. They’re based in Saltaire, which is also gorgeous, so I shall make the effort to visit their premises.
A quick tooth update. The dental surgeon told me it’d hurt yesterday. It didn’t. Well, not too much.
It didn’t hurt most of today either. Well, not too much.
Hurts like fuck now though. So it’s back to pills and alcohol.
I came across Ojo Rojo when searching for vegan food places in Bournemouth. The place isn’t vegan, but the vegan options are pretty cool.
And the food was just gorgeous.
Followed by a Dead Pony Club in the Four Horsemen.
My second in command and I enjoyed a short train trip to Christchurch today.
We found a nice bar.
We also found a rather nice vegan cafe, Good Intentions.
Where we had some great chilli.
Then there was the Saxon Bar. Now, that was a cool place.
Today wasn’t just about beer though. There was history.
And, somehow, we managed to bump into someone (Brian) from our local. Synchronicity.