We were tempted down Kettering way to attend a christening. It was just far enough to have us stopping over the night before at a Premier Inn, because we know how to push the boat out as a family, and that had a cafe attached. Say no more, says I, and we're down there having tea with me trying out the ales. Now, warning be made, it was a Brewer's Fayre and the selection was far from being decent, I mean, they had Tribute on but had run out. No chance of a delivery that night. In the end I settled for a half with my meal and then went back again later for a second half and a bottle of pale whilst I read my book for the evening - Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch in case you were wondering - and then retired to bed.
The christening was a lovely occasion but I am a poor judge of social situations and so I shall leave it at that, after all, this here's a beer blog and what you're really here for is some noodling on the ales and some thoughts on the selection. What I will say is this: if your lager is cheaper to the tune of almost a pound for a pint versus a half of real ale, there's something wrong. Mind you, I've wondered before if real ale is the gentrification of drinking and thus deliberately slanted 'gainst the working classes, this pricing structure would seem to suggest that at least some big companies think so.
Still, the staff were quite lovely and helpful to this rather odd beer bore and let me get on with my reading with some ale in the evening so I really can't complain. Would you like to know more?
First up of the evening was East Coast IPA from Greene King at 4% ABV and on draught.
The next one was a bottle of Sharp's Atlantic Pale which I had been itching to get and have a go at for a while too. At 4.5% ABV and £2.95 the bottle this was good value.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the winner of the evening was the Atlantic Pale as it allowed me to read quickly and without loss of focus as well as function the following day in church and on into the meal afterwards. It was a decent tipple, the price wasn't so bad given the context and I wish I'd had two of them rather than the East Coast IPA. Not that the IPA was that bad, it just wasn't what I've come to expect of draught ales.