Thursday, 26 February 2015

Beer Review: Tri-Ball Tribrute

Another day and another ale. I have found and procured more of the lovely Batemans Mocha (here) for 79p a pop, which has made me immodestly happy, and I have decided to celebrate by trying another of the Christmas ales from my mother - the Sulwath gift box set. Third of these offerings then is a nice little blonde number that goes by the name of Tri-Ball Tribute, a reference to raquet sports in Scotland apparently, and with the thistle and St. Andrew's Cross very visible on the bottle.

It was that sort of day you see, when you think that the weather is very much like what you'd expect in Scotland. Having lived as close as I did to the country for as long as I did and as young as I did I suspect that this may just be a me sort of thing to think. In the meantime it's late evening, I've had a lovely (if ad hoc) meal of home-cooked spring rolls, pork pie and grapes and I fancy me a decent bottle of ale - hence the decision to go for this.


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Sunday, 22 February 2015

Beer Review: Treacle Porter

Something a bit different. I have reviewed an album with ale and I have talked about beers to cry into on Valentine's Day. Now I thought I would start reviewing some speciality ale on a Sunday, because it is alliteration and I rather like alliteration. On that thought, thank me later, for thou shall think highly of this! Yes, it's another Innis & Gunn effort (because I was alerted by someone I follow on Google+ to the existence of this ale and had to get some) and it's Treacle Porter. Apparently people in Scotland spread treacle on their morning toast. I'm not so certain about that, having lived close to Scotland and never having heard of the practice, but limited edition ale and it being a porter? Count me in.

Okay, a stout would have got me in rather more quickly. But hey, what can you do? Easy, actually, you can taste and review the ale anyway and enjoy it on a cold and windy Sunday in the back of beyond. Not quite in the garden, that will have to wait until later in the year (I have a garden) but, in the meantime, a nice enough place to start.


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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Beer Review: Pure Ubu

I'm sure I remember some film company or TV show making vehicle that had this ale's name and so I went looking and I was right! Paramount had Ubu productions and there was, indeed, a canine named Ubu. So it came as no surprise to me that the Pure Ubu brew from Purity would have a dog named Ubu as the inspiration. Ubu? Who do? You do. Do what? Remind me of the pooch.


Alas, I no longer remember which TV show, in particular, had me see this so much that it became so known in my mind. Might have been Star Trek? No matter. Tonight is not about old television shows it is about ales, and tonight's effort is, in cae you haven't guessed, Pure Ubu by Purity and is something I picked up a while back on offer - which goes for pretty much every ale I have these days, let's be honest. Still, it seemed like a decent punt and so now I am trying it.


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Sunday, 15 February 2015

Beers to Cry Into

For many many years, more than I'd like to admit, the days following Valentine's Day always went the same way. There was the numb realisation that nothing had changed, that there had been no card this year either, and the fact that other people did was just the icing on the cake. On days like those you just wanted to wallow in the self-pity and the shame, the failure to be like everyone else - sure, other people had no cards but that was not a permanent or forever thing.


My own history is littered with days like those, and not just on the day after Valentine's either. So, for people who want to give up on the whole pressure of a commercialised mandated day of romantic liaisons; who wish they could be nonchalant and avant garde about it all, declare it gauche and thus beneath them; but who remain, nevertheless, slightly depressed (though they could never talk about that to anyone else in public or in private)... for those people, I present to you some beers to cry into.

Would you care to drown your sorrows?


Thursday, 12 February 2015

Beer Review: The Grace

So much to do and so little time. So many ales in the kitchen to get through, it's a hard life! Tonight it is the turn of another of the ales from Christmas, Sulwath, and after some brief debate with myself I plumbed for what I thought would be a golden ale. I was wrong, it's amber. It is The Grace, being named after the Selkirk Grace, believed to be written at the Selkirk Arms in Kirkcudbright (pronounced "Kid-cuddie"). So, there you go.


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Sunday, 8 February 2015

Beer Review: Ian & Paul's Ale

It's Sunday and I'm not doing much special. I have a load of marking still to do (and I know I get paid for that, not complaining, just saying) and so I got lazy. I am just having the one ale to relax and try to recover from the talent show where I was a zombie (it's a long story, don't ask). And I have a few ales lying about the place that, frankly, need drinking.

Tonight I am rectifying that complete travesty of not being drunk with Growler's IPA (or Ian and Paul's Ale, I'm not sure what the real name is, but this one makes me giggle a bit so it will serve better for the purposes of the review).


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Thursday, 5 February 2015

Beer Review: Mocha

Hi-di-hi! It's time for another evening ale in the middle of marking like an eejit (no bad thing, just very busy) and so this marks a welcome bout of relaxation in amongst the self-induced chaos. There's plenty to do and you know what I'm like. I procrastinate. In fact: this sums it up better. Onward. I bought these for a colleague for Christmas and then felt left out, I saw them on offer for less than the price of a can of coke and though 'yes' - and now I review it.

It is, of course, Batemans Brewery Mocha that I have seen about the place a bit and is on permanent sale in Muirhouse Brewery Taps for a quite reasonable outlay too (and in 500ml bottles).


Would you like to venture further into the coffee-shop induced madness of an ale that sells itself by coffee smell? You would? Lovely, read more.

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Ales for Albums: Sonic Highways

Around Christmas I received a gift from my family's favourite Belgian (see here) and a challenge, which I think was part of the gift, and it's had me thinking ever since. If this goes well I suspect I shan't be long in trying a second bash at this sort of thing as it was an interesting exercise and, to my knowledge, it's not been done by anyone I have contact with before. What is this? Well, I was sent the album Sonic Highways by the Foo Fighters - this album is a concept album in which they take eight US cities and using their experiences there they created a song to match that inspiration.


The challenge was to listen to the album and then find an ale that was inspired by the music. That is, each of the tracks would be linked to an ale that would match their style and their rhythm and beat. Now, it goes without saying (I hope) that drinking an ale to each track (them being between four and seven minutes long) would result in rapid loss of use of one's body and is not to be recommended.


Would you like to see what this challenge has called forth from the dark recesses of my mind? You would? Excellent, click on the finely hand-crafted 'read more' link below!