Friday, 27 November 2009

British Beer and Pub Association launches manifesto

The six 'core principles' of the manifesto are:

1. Put pubs at the heart of a campaign to strengthen community life.

2. Lower the tax and regulatory burden on pubs and beer.

3. Limit the proliferation of new codes and restrictions – enforce existing laws properly instead.

4. Promote a policy environment that encourages consumers to choose low alcohol drinks such as beer.

5. Recognise the traditional role of pubs as the place for responsible, social drinking, in a more balanced strategy for tackling abuse.

6. Work in partnership with the brewing and pub sector to promote social responsibility through through support for initiatives like Pubwatch, Crime and Disorder Partnerships, Best Bar None, Purple Flag, the Campaign for Smarter Drinking and Drinkaware.

read the whole mainfesto

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Thursday, 26 November 2009

CAMRA National Pub of the Year 2009 Finalists

CAMRA's National Pub of the Year competition has been running throughout 2009. CAMRA members assess thousands of pubs across the UK, scoring on various aspects which make a great pub, including the welcome, service, atmosphere, customer mix (i.e. 18-80 year olds), d├ęcor and, of course, the quality of the real ale.

The four CAMRA National Pub of the Year 2009 finalists are:

Royal Oak Inn, Wantage, Oxon, OX12 8DF
Photographs of ships bearing the pub's name adorn the walls in this street-corner pub. The lounge bar features a wrought-iron trelliswork, larglely hidden by over 300 pump clips. The smaller public bar attracts a younger crowd. A mecca for the discerning drinker, the pub is a primary outlet for Pitstop and West Berks ales in the area- two beers carry the landlord's name.

Crown Hotel, Worthington, Gtr Manchester, WN1 2XF
Local CAMRA Pub of the Year 2006 and 2008, this country inn offers eight cask beers and two scrumpy ciders, and acts as the brewery tap for Prospect beers. High quality home-cooked food is served in the bar and conservatory restaurant, while a large decked sun terrace at the rear has patio heaters for cooler evenings. Mini beer festivals are held about four times a year.

Royal Oak, Friday Street, West Sussex, RH12 4QA
A lovely, isolated, low-beamed, narrow free house that is well worth finding, with seven handpumps for real ale, three for cider and two for perry. Ales are usually from local micro-breweries and are constantly changing. CAMRA National Pub of the Year Runner-Up in 2009. This is a real gem.

Kelham Island Tavern, Sheffield, South Yorkshire, S3 8RW
Selected as CAMRA's National Pub of the Year in 2008 after previously picking up many local and regional awards, this small gem was rescued from dereliction as recently as 2002. An impressive 10 permanent handpumps include two that always dispense a mild and a stout/porter, so you are sure to find something to suit your mood. In the warmer months you can relax in the pub's multi-award winning beer garden.

The winner of the CAMRA National Pub of the Year 2009 is to be announced in mid-February 2010.

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Monday, 16 November 2009

The Daas Pure Indulgence Competition

The Daas Pure Indulgence Competition

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Ale taster needed for town market in Luton

Luton's indoor market is resurrecting the role of ale taster and is looking for suitable volunteer candidates.

The applicants must live in the town or one of the surrounding villages
They must be over the age of 18
Have a good knowledge of food and drink – ideally with a local angle
Be passionate about the subject
Be an articulate speaker
Be comfortable with speaking to the media and in front of audiences
Have a smart appearance – in terms of dress, grooming etc

In medieval times the ale taster would visit stalls and inns on market days and at fairs to ensure alcoholic drinks and other produce were of good quality

The role disappeared in the early 19th Century, but is now being brought back. The future employer said a "genuine love of food and drink" is essential.

Apply via The Town and Country Markets Website

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Tuesday, 10 November 2009

The aletalk real ale selection


We've teamed up with LivingBeer.com to put together a selection of twelve bottled real ales from four breweries around the UK. The beers included range from Traditional Bitter to Stout, IPA and Porter, with strengths ranging from 3.6% abv to 7% abv.

You can get 10% off our exclusive beer selection before the end of November 2009 - Just enter the code you can find Here when prompted at the checkout.

Here's what you can find in the case....

Ascot Ales

Alligator Ale abv: 4.6%
Anastasia's Exile Stout abv: 5.0%
Posh Pooch abv: 4.2%






Cheddar Ales

Goat's Leap IPA abv: 5.7%
Gorge Best abv: 4.0%
Totty Pot abv: 4.5%


Ffos Y Ffin Brewery



Cwrw Caredig abv: 4.1%
Merlin's Brew abv: 3.6%
Towy Ale abv: 5.0%

Sheffield Crown Brewery

Unpronouncable IPA abv: 7.0%
Wheat Stout abv: 6.6%
Wheetie Bits abv: 4.4%




All the tasting notes & how to order can be found Here

Don't forget..... Order our exclusive beer selection before the end of November 2009 and you can get 10% off

More real ale news & views at aletalk.co.uk

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Wakefield (CAMRA) Beer Festival 2009

Another weekend, another beer festival, this time a short train journey away, in Wakefield at the Light Waves Leisure Centre.

A short walk up Westgate took us past The Black Rock, thinking it rude to pass by without popping in, an excellent pint of Tetley's was enjoyed - Two guest beers were available as well. Suitably refreshed we descended on the beer festival.

Four pounds entry (free for CAMRA members), including a NON-REFUNDABLE festival glass (Two pounds for CAMRA members).... Didn't I read somewhere that glasses at all CAMRA festivals should be refundable? Then tickets for beer, priced at 1.20 each which we were told would buy a half. Imagine our surprise then when some stronger beers were a token plus 10p or even 20p.

A good varied selection of beers on offer from the sublime Jaipur IPA (Thornbridge) and Dark Ruby Mild (Sarah Hughes) to the reasonable Hill Climb (Prescott) and the downright awful (cant really say but it was poured down the sink in the gents).
Even though I'm not a great fan of beer festivals in large sports halls - they always seem to lack atmosphere - I understand that it must be difficult to find large enough venues to hold a beer festival in. All in all a pleasant enough afternoon but it did raise some questions:
Why don't CAMRA instigate a beer festival policy so there is consistancy around the country?
If a festival is charging different prices for the beers, why don't they have a better method for buying them?
Festival glasses, refundable or non-refundable?

For a list of upcoming beer festivals visit our Calendar of Events

More real ale news and views at aletalk.co.uk