Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Beer and whine

Whenever people best known for their writing on wine venture on to the subject of beer, they invariably shoot themselves in the foot. And rarely has this been done with such spectacular effect as by Bruce Anderson in the latest edition of the Spectator, in a piece entitled Only the south offers beer lovers a decent pint. He writes:

In recent years, the quality of civic life in Britain has steadily deteriorated. Change has become synonymous with decay. But there is one delightful exception. In southern England these days, it is almost impossible to find a bad pint of beer. Matters may be different in other parts of the United Kingdom. From my limited experience, we Scots are not good at beer. It is something that is only drunk to eke out the whisky. North of the Tweed, bitter is known as ‘heavy’, which is a fair description and not an encouraging one. In the north of England, too, beer is often excessively sweet. As for Wales, I believe that there is a brew called sheepshag, in which the hops are mixed with mistletoe, but we should leave the west Celts to their… bardic… rituals.
And, after this, he concludes:
Decent pints come almost exclusively from the southern parts of the Heptarchy.
Such a complete load of ill-informed, xenophobic nonsense hardly deserves a rejoinder. While there is indeed plenty of potentially good beer in the South, all too often it is overpriced and poorly kept. Come to the North, though, and you will find just as much, if not more, and what’s more it will in general be much cheaper and in much better condition. “My limited experience” indeed!

20 comments:

  1. You uppity northerners really need to learn your place. First you all vote for Brexit like the inbred racists you all are, then claim your cheap brown sparkled swill is comparable to our fine highly priced sour murk ? What's to be done about you all?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I seem to recall Kent and Essex being some of the keenest areas to vote for Brexit...

      Delete
    2. Frankly, anywhere outside my own enclave of shoreditch is a racist brexit voting cheap beer swilling hellhole that will ever appreciate craft beer writing.

      Delete
  2. I believe the record should be set straight with an equally generalised and xenophobic retort about soft southern nancies drinking warm, flat piss with a lemonade top to take the nasty beer taste away, in between sipping lattes and knitting quinoa hats and pashminas.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The author of that piece clearly resides in London, with the untermenschen. Must more be said?

    ReplyDelete
  4. "we Scots are not good at beer"????

    Makes me wonder when last this person ventured back over the Tweed.

    ReplyDelete
  5. The Stafford Mudgie20 February 2019 at 17:20

    "Such a complete load of ill-informed, xenophobic nonsense" is equalled with Bruce's "That is especially true when it comes to the ablest group of them all, the soldiers".
    https://www.spectator.co.uk/2018/12/why-our-soldiers-are-more-impressive-than-every-other-kind-of-leader/
    Yes, recruit a retired soldier who brings in a dodgy Revitalisation plan and then after he has "aroused strong passions and unsettled many members" and steadily rising membership figures go into decline he's gone !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, CAMRA's departed, former CEO wasn't exactly a rip-roaring success, and after he screwed up, he walked. Rather like a former Prime Minister I could name.

      Perhaps the former squaddie will also retire to an expensive shed in the garden to write his memoirs.

      Delete
    2. The Stafford Mudgie23 February 2019 at 08:04

      Paul,
      Yes, and the founding member who had come back for the project "as a favour" after thirty years likewise walked.

      Delete
  6. I would join you in condemning it but I enjoyed the outrage so I doff my cap to a better crack at trolling than I have managed in a long while.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The problem is that it was sincere. You and I are the only Northern readers of the Spectator.

      Delete
    2. What is The Spectator? Some kind of television fanzine by the name?

      Delete
  7. Bruce Anderson and his fellow journalist Peter Hitchens both moved from the far left in the late 60s to the Thatcherite right in the 80s, much like the RCP/Living Marxism, now trading as Spiked Online, has in the last decade or so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Stafford Mudgie21 February 2019 at 12:36

      Yes, and I think his "Torture the wife and children" goes beyond Thatcherism.
      Now can we please get back to discussing southern beer ?

      Delete
    2. Tandleman wrote a very interesting blogpost about the "sparkler divide" between Northern and Southern beer a few years back. The border starts at Derby apparently.

      Delete
    3. Yes, the Trent is a big river, historically with remarkably few bridges. Things are often quite different either side.

      Delete
    4. The Stafford Mudgie27 February 2019 at 07:19

      The Trent passing through the village three miles north-east of me is a small river with bridges approximately every mile.
      It is though a big river by the time it gets to Burton and it's massive as it joins the River Ouse to form the Humber.

      Delete
  8. I don't know which annoyed me more, this ill-informed nonsense from Bruce Anderson, or the predictably Toryphobic Twitter shitstorm that followed.

    ReplyDelete
  9. It is quite rare to get a warm pint in Newcastle but in Edinburgh that is the norm.

    ReplyDelete

Comments, especially on older posts, may require prior approval by the blog owner. See here for details of my comment policy.

Please register an account to comment. To combat persistent trolling, unregistered comments are liable to be deleted unless I recognise the author. If you intend to make more than the occasional comment using an unregistered ID, you will need to tell me something about yourself.