Thursday, 3 January 2013

The Festive Period. An exciting 'round up"

The onset of January, and indeed the onslaught of 2013, recently began in earnest.  Before that becomes a grinding inevitability, let's just take a minute to look back over an exciting December, which turned out to be a month.

As Birmingham residents will be only too gratefully aware, our branch of Brewdog finally opened it's doors on 11th December.  It's opening was met with a wave of people going in and buying beer and then tweeting about how nice it was[is].

I managed to hold back for a full half a day before peeking inside and buying my first ever {Birmingham-based} kegged Brewdog.  It was Movember, a Black IPA and it tasted, like, victory.

Since then I have popped in as often as my wife/wallet/boss/child/slim-fit jeans will allow and even during this short timescale, have already sampled some incredible draft beers, including Cocoa Psycho, Punk IPA, Jackhammer, Hoppy Xmas, Tokyo, Imperial Red Wheat and guest offerings from the likes of Mikkeller, Brodies and Rogue.  Fabulous.  A range which is blatantly of a different order to any other draft offering in the city.

Coincidentally, the opening of Brewdog Brum came just a few days after I visited their Nottingham sister, during a short, punchy crawl of that city.  Nottingham is somewhere that conjures fond memories of Selectadisc, Rock City and massive LCFC victories (cough).  I was pleased to see that its boozers are up to scratch, with King William IV, Kean's Head and BD all brilliant venues.  I supped Whim, Navigation, Brewdog, Castle Rock and Rodenbach; and almost missed my train.

<The second half of this post drags rather.  Thus, to brighten/spice things up, I have changed the text colour. Does this work as a technique?>

In other Brum news, the Christmas period offered the yearly chance to visit boozers whose doors I don't usually darken**:  

Sometimes this is because I am frightened to venture in - like i) the Crown, which I was delighted to find was a beautiful old pub, in great nick.  Terrible beer choice mind, but space to sit down and kegged Brew XI were a compromise worth taking.

Sometimes I assume a place doesn't serve beer and/or I'm not trendy enough to go in - like ii) the Island Bar, which I was delighted to find was a buzzing place, offering bottled Marstons Oyster Stout.

Aside from Brewdog, another regular stop-off during the party season was the Victoria, which boasted 3x handpulls of Thornbridge on the visit I can remember, including delicious (ever-delicious) Kipling.

I also popped into the Old Joint Stock and enjoyed a Fullers Past Masters Old Burton Extra, which was mellifluous malt indeed.

My final note is of brief stop-offs at two of the Shakespeares* in the centre: I quaffed Pilsner Urquell on Summer Row and succulent Jaipur at Lower Temple.  Both were delicious.

Happy NY.

* There is a third one in New Street station.  You have to have a train ticket to get to it and I certainly would not advise buying one for that specific purpose - it's not a good enough place.
** Because all of my usual haunts are rammed.
*** I also went to Leicester over the holiday.  Lots of Everards Tiger - yum yum.

1 comment:

  1. Good post, as usual.

    Strictly speaking you could buy a platform pass for a mere 10p in order to enjoy the overpriced lagery delights of the third Shakespeare...