Sam smiths

Many people are not aware of sam smiths pubs because they dont spend any money on advertising. This is even to the extent that there will not even be a sign outside and the only way you know its one is either its complete lack of signage bar one naming the pub or you go instead and see the pump clips/menus. In really old ones in London its in the stained glass windows so its sometimes easier but usually its a case of to the Internet if you want to track one down. I don’t think they even have a website or directory of pubs but other people have created unofficial lists of the hundreds around the country. These are concentrated in the south west, london and the north  so you may never have seen one even if you live in these areas because I only discovered them recently. Sam smiths are a unique brand of pubs because they only allow there own brands inside. This means you wont find anything that is normally resident in a pub like fosters, carlsberg, guiness or even john smiths which was his brother. John smith sold out years ago but sam smith never did. This means they can sell all natural and mainly organic beer to its customers along with lager, stout, fruit beer and its own soft drinks. It has a range of spirits and crisps too. The staff in these  places vary considerably as do the buildings they are housed in. It is a real experience to see and drink a piece of English history.

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Mum at gazebo Kingston

My mum and dad at the gazebo in Kingston.

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Beer- unusual flavours and things to do with it.

Now I don’t want people to think I’m an alcoholic always talking about beer but I do like it. Craft beer that is not mass produced stuff. I have  signed up to some American newsletters and they do crazy things with beer. They make ice cream, doughnuts and all sorts of flavour combinations. Any body who was able to try the Caribbean Chocolate Cake with jerk flavouring that was made by Siren for a special occasion will know about that. Siren are an English brewer that I like very much and I wanted to go to their IPA day at their brewery on August 1st but I’m not going to be able to make it. Rogue are an American brewery who make funky beers all the time but they are in big bottles and quite expensive. I have wanted to try bacon maple beer and other flavours but I wasn’t paying £15 for something I may not like at the bottle shop when they had them or anywhere else for that matter. I like going to Wetherspoons for their beer festival and trying the unusual beer although I never get to drink very many in the 2 weeks that it’s on because they don’t have the ones I want, I don’t have the money or somebody to go with usually. I have been to quite a few beer festivals all over kent as it is the home of the hop but strangely I don’t like English hops or beer produced with it very much. I have tried American, Danish, Welsh, Scottish, Greek and even a New Zealand beer according to my rate beer account. What is not on there is all the Belgian beers I have drunk and even ones from the Cayman Islands. I am very curious and I’m always up for trying new beers, styles and places to drink said beer. I may be starting to sound like my life revolves around beer but it does not. This is at least ten years worth distilled into one article and everybody knows that teenagers and uni students go out and drink a lot.

I have made pancakes with beer before as there was a bit left in the bottle that I forget about so it was saved from a fate worse than death – being poured down the sink. I have also made bread with beer. This does not always work and should never be attempted with mass produced beer or lager as it will fail on an epic scale but craft beer is fine. This is when I bought a beer that it turned out I didn’t like so rather than commit a heinous crime and waste it and money, I made it into beer and it was fine. They always used to combine bread and beer making in the olden days as it was one of the woman’s responsibilities. Nowadays water is safe to drink but we still enjoy these 2 staples of the British diet beer and bread.

Glassware Conundrum?

Very interesting thanks for the info.

Beersay

Being a “bit” of a glass pedant, I often get asked questions by folk like “what glass do you think best suits this beer?” and such things.

Now I know there are no hard and fast rules, and to some folks, a glass is purely a method of shifting liquid from table to gob with no thoughts of what benefits using a suitable designed receptacle could bring to the party. Some don’t bother with glasses at all, but we won’t mention those…. 😉

Seriously though, if you are interested, there are loads of books out there on beers and beer styles that offer advice with the associated perceived enhancements to expect, or maybe purely just the historical reasons behind why a specific beer glass is the way it is.

You could also do worse than keeping theses two “info-graphics” to hand. Both of the attached articles were published by Jay Brooks…

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getting a working blog take 2

The first time I tried to do this was with postach.io which is the blog that comes with evernote. Now evernote is a brilliant program to use to jot things down with so that you don’t forget stuff much like OneNote from Microsoft. The advantage was that it worked on a kindle fire. Evernote food was also very good for pics of meals I cooked like a better version of instagram which integrates well being from the same company. However it doesn’t work well on the blog. I can’t figure out how to use it so after 4 months I’m giving this a go.

Ps. This is not the first blog I’ve had that was a msn one in 2004. 

beer blogging

Upon finally joining WordPress I was very surprised that there is such a thing as a beer blogging conference and they have them in Europe and the US. I know most of the newsletters, websites or anything else to do with beer is very US orientated which isn’t very helpful if you are in the UK. I do however know there are dedicated men in the UK drinking craft beer due to my membership of rate beer.com. There are other apps too like untapped on Facebook. Drew at the bottle shop in Canterbury has his own blog dedicated to reviewing all the craft beer he drinks and since he works there it’s quite a lot he gets to sample; especially with the monthly tastings. They have all kinds of different beers that are constantly changing and they have the good beer guarantee too. What this means is that if you buy a beer that they have recommended and you don’t like it they will change it for another. This goes a long way as craft beer is often bottle conditioned meaning the yeast is still alive and the beer is still developing. Also if your new to craft beer you might not know what style you like.