How many times have you been to a restaurant and been shown a nice menu and an appealing wine list? I’m willing to bet many times. But how many times have you been offered a beer menu? None? You might get an offer of some disgusting keg fizz or a lager like Carling or Fosters. Even worse, a Sol or an Amstel or a Heineken. Pressurised, pasteurised tasteless pap that will not complement your food nor aid digestion. If you are really lucky you might get a Guinness served extra cold so your tastebuds can’t detect anything.
Real ale is a traditional British drink with a long, and proud, history. We have Winter Ales for the cold nights, light and hoppy Summer Ales for refreshment, Milds galore, Stouts, Porters, all sorts of session beers and a host of proud, independent breweries producing an awe-inspiring range of glorious beers. So why don’t we Brits celebrate them? Revel in them? The Germans are justifiably proud of their brewing tradition and their beer purity law dating back to the 1500s so why aren’t we equally as proud of our traditional beers? My guess is that to keep real beer requires skill- its so much easier to slop keg or lager out. And easier to rip you off by charging a hefty sum for cheap plonk.
Perhaps, as the link below shows, we are beginning to fight back and reclaim our heritage. Next time you go for a drink or a meal, demand a real ale served in good condition. If the venue can’t provide you with one then walk out. Do you really want a drink that has been boiled to kill all life in it, chilled to remove the bad taste and then re-pressurised with CO2 to give it a semblance of life? If you don’t believe me on how bad they are, try a pint of room temperature lager or keg.