Friday 18 June 2010

Clone zone

There’s a good piece here by Chris Maclean on the death of regional variation, specifically in terms of beer selection in the licensed trade but also more generally.

It certainly seems to me that the overall experience of drinking in pubs was in a way more satisfying when the vast majority of cask beers – even those produced by the national brewers – very much had a regional distribution, so in a different part of the country you would be presented with an entirely different range of beers. Contrast this with the current situation where in so many pubs you are faced with a random “perm any ten from six hundred” selection. You can still find this in areas of the country with a strong presence of independent family brewers – such as Harveys in East Sussex and Palmers in West Dorset, but in most places it is very much a thing of the past, and something valuable has been lost in the process.


  1. Some places seem to be all Greene King and that's not a good thing.

    When I started drinking you were mostly limited to Courage Directors or Ind Coope Burton Ale. Whilst I was very fond of Burton I prefer the variety found in pubs nowadays.

  2. There is more choice in specialist pubs, but not in the general run of pubs. If you go in a pub in rural Staffordshire and are confronted with a choice of Abbot Ale and Bombardier there must be something wrong.


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