Mine's a Pint Issue 43

Reading & Mid-Berkshire CAMRA magazine for Autumn 2017.

Reading & Mid-Berkshire CAMRA magazine for Autumn 2017.


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Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Branch Diary<br />

All events start at 20.00 and are open to everybody unless<br />

specified.<br />

September<br />

Thu 7: First Thursday of the Month Social. Start at Roebuck,<br />

37 Auckland Road, Reading, RG6 1NY. Then moving on to<br />

Abbot Cook and Retreat.<br />

Sun 10: Pub walk to the Flower Pot at Aston (total 6 miles).<br />

Meet at Henley station car park at 11.15. For more details<br />

contact Chris Hinton: chinton557@gmail.com / 0118 987<br />

3203.<br />

Tue 12: Branch meeting. Queens Head (garden room), 54<br />

Christchurch Road, Reading, RG2 7AZ. CAMRA members<br />

only, please.<br />

Sat 16: South London Brewery Crawl. Meet at 12.00 at<br />

Elephant & Castle Underground Station (shopping centre<br />

entrance). For more details see SLBT17.eventbrite.co.uk<br />

Thu 21: Gala Awards Evening. Three Guineas (cellar bar),<br />

Station Approach, Reading, RG1 1LY. Meet the winners of<br />

our “Of the Year” awards as well as the winning breweries<br />

from this year’s beer festival and a few special award winners.<br />

October<br />

Thu 5: First Thursday of the Month Social. Fox and Hounds,<br />

116 City Road, Tilehurst, RG31 5SB.<br />

Fri 6 – Sat 7: Ascot Beer Festival. For more details see ascotbeerfest.org.uk<br />

Wed 18: Branch meeting. Royal Oak (conservatory at rear<br />

of pub), Ruscombe Lane, Ruscombe, RG10 9JN. CAMRA<br />

members only, please.<br />

November<br />

Thu 2: First Thursday of the Month Social. Bell and Bottle,<br />

37 School Green, Shinfield, RG2 9EE.<br />

Sat 11: Branch AGM. Griffin (upstairs function room), 10/12<br />

Church Road, Caversham, RG4 7AD. 12.00 start. AGM will<br />

be followed by a pub crawl. CAMRA members only for the<br />

AGM, please; all welcome for the crawl.<br />

See www.readingcamra.org.uk for details of these events as<br />

they come available.<br />

For further details if there’s no contact listed, to suggest an<br />

event or to receive regular e-mail updates of the branch diary,<br />

contact Chris Hinton: social@readingcamra.org.uk<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

3<br />

Contact Us<br />

Useful contact details for this<br />

magazine, CAMRA and other<br />

important things…<br />

Mine’s a <strong>Pint</strong> Circulation: 3,000.<br />

Outlets: Over 70 across the region.<br />

Editor: Phil Gill<br />

editor@readingcamra.org.uk<br />

0771 455 0293<br />

81 Addison Road, Reading, RG1 8EG<br />

Magazine published on behalf of<br />

Reading and Mid Berkshire CAMRA<br />

by:<br />

Neil Richards MBE at Matelot<br />

Marketing<br />

01536 358670 / 07710 281381<br />

n.richards@btinternet.com<br />

Printed by Portland Printers, Bartley<br />

Drive, Kettering,<br />

Northants, NN16 8UN.<br />

01536 511555<br />

Reading & Mid Berkshire CAMRA<br />

www.readingcamra.org.uk<br />

Social Secretary: Chris Hinton<br />

social@readingcamra.org.uk<br />

Contact for all other branch matters:<br />

Katrina Fletcher<br />

contact@readingcamra.org.uk<br />

0779 401 9<strong>43</strong>7<br />

Local Trading Standards<br />

Reading Borough Council:<br />

www.reading.gov.uk 0118 937 3737<br />

West Berkshire Council:<br />

www.westberks.gov.uk 01635 519930<br />

Royal Borough of Windsor &<br />

Maidenhead:<br />

www.rbwm.gov.uk 01628 683800<br />

Wokingham Borough Council:<br />

www.wokingham.gov.uk 0118 974<br />

6400<br />

The next issue of Mine’s a <strong>Pint</strong> will be<br />

published in early December. Please<br />

feel free to submit any copy or ideas<br />

by 5 November.<br />

The opinions expressed in Mine’s a <strong>Pint</strong><br />

are not necessarily those of the editor or<br />

the Campaign for Real Ale. © Campaign<br />

for Real Ale 2017.

From The Editor<br />








You can see from the branch diary that<br />

there’s a lot going on locally. On the social<br />

side we have our regular First Thursday<br />

of the Month socials or, if you fancy<br />

something a bit more energetic, there’s a<br />

pub walk coming up to a lovely country<br />

pub that’s a bit off the beaten track – the<br />

Flower Pot at Aston. It’s well worth a<br />

visit, not least so that you can admire the<br />

amazing collection of fish in glass cases that<br />

cover the walls.<br />

Perhaps, like many of us, you joined<br />

CAMRA because you think that real ale,<br />

real cider, real perry and real pubs are<br />

something unique. Something valuable.<br />

Something worth fighting for. If so then<br />

it’s time to take a more active role in the<br />

campaign. We have our AGM coming up<br />

and you can read more in this issue about<br />

some specific roles that we’d like to fill.<br />

But however you want to help, you’ll be<br />

made to feel welcome and we’ll certainly<br />

appreciate your contribution, however large<br />

or small.<br />

So make today the day that you step up<br />

and give something back to the campaign.<br />

It’s people giving of their time and energy<br />

– however little or however much they can<br />

spare – that have got us where we are today.<br />

CAMRA is the most successful consumer<br />

organisation in Europe, and your help can<br />

make us better yet.<br />

Cheers!<br />

Phil Gill - Editor<br />

editor@readingcamra.org.uk<br />


BEER<br />

...AT HOME<br />

Drink Rebellion cask ale<br />

at home, fresh from the<br />

brewery shop<br />

Fresh beer, ready to drink<br />

1 litre bottles up to 72 pint barrels<br />

<br />

including 10% OFF beer<br />

Fresh cider<br />

Local produce<br />

Over 300 worldwide wines<br />

Free glass hire<br />

Call 01628 476594<br />

Contents<br />

Shop opening hours:<br />

Mon-Sat 8am-7pm<br />

Or visit our website:<br />

www.rebellionbeer.co.uk<br />

@RebellionBeer<br />

RebellionBeerCo<br />

Rebellion Beer Co. Ltd. Bencombe Farm, Marlow Bottom, SL7 3LT<br />

Branch Diary<br />

From the Editor<br />

Pub & Brewery News<br />

Beer Scoring<br />

Small Beer<br />

New Kind of Beer Festival<br />

New Wharf Brewing Company<br />

From the Archives<br />

History of Lager<br />

Join CAMRA<br />

3<br />

4<br />

5-10<br />

12-13<br />

16-18<br />

21-22<br />

23<br />

25<br />

26-27<br />

28-30<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


Pub & Brewery News<br />

Pub News<br />


As we went to print the BRAMSHILL HUNT was<br />

closed due to lease renegotiations. We hope to see<br />

this popular pub reopen again soon.<br />

Further up the road, the SWAN is on the market<br />

as a free house. We understand that the current<br />

tenants Mike and Lynne plan to leave in September.<br />


The BARON CADOGAN on Prospect Street now<br />

hosts a weekly pub quiz, starting every Monday<br />

at 8pm. The house beer in this Wetherspoons<br />

is from the local Loddon Brewery (Ferryman’s<br />

Gold rebadged at Cadogan’s Gold) and other<br />

microbreweries are also represented, along with<br />

real cider and often perry.<br />

There’s a planning application to convert the<br />

upper floor of THE ISLAND into flats. This is<br />

the bar on Piper’s Island in the Thames, accessible<br />

only by river or by a footbridge off Caversham<br />

Bridge. Naturally, given that it’s in the middle of a<br />

river, the site is part of the functional floodplain so<br />

residential use may be a problem. That said, given<br />

the long history of noise and licensing issues with<br />

the bar, many local residents will be disappointed<br />

that it’s only the upper floor proposed for<br />

conversion.<br />


Our friends at South Oxon CAMRA were so<br />

impressed that they awarded the Flowing Spring<br />

their Pub of the Season award for this summer.<br />

Seen here at the presentation are David Cooper,<br />

the Chairman of South Oxfordshire CAMRA,<br />

with the Flowing Spring’s new owners Hazel<br />

Lucas and Nick Willson.<br />


The OLD BELL has been offering a regular guest<br />

beer from Loddon brewery. As a Chef and Brewer<br />

pub, it also offers a 10% discount on cask ales for<br />

CAMRA members – just show your membership<br />

card at the bar.<br />


The FLOWING SPRING has new owners. Nick<br />

and Hazel, who have been the tenants for the last<br />

six years, have bought the pub from Fullers and<br />

it’s now a free house for the first time in its 220<br />

year history. It’s been a long process but the sale<br />

finally completed at the end of June.<br />

Up to six real ales, two real ciders and a wide<br />

choice of gluten-free, vegan and alcohol-free<br />

wines, beers and ciders are on offer. The home<br />

cooked food also includes a wide range of glutenfree,<br />

vegetarian and vegan options. We hope to<br />

feature more about this pub in the next issue.<br />


The ELDON ARMS in Eldon Terrace closed in<br />

April after brewery Wadworth sold the building,<br />

and licensee Russell MacKenzie moved on to a pub<br />

in Pewsey, Wiltshire. Shortly after closure a sign<br />

appeared in the window advertising for new bar<br />

staff and the pub subsequently reopened in June<br />

– and you may recognise a couple of members of<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


staff! As far as we are aware it is a freehouse and<br />

a variety of different ales have been spotted along<br />

the five pumps over the last few weeks, as well as<br />

real cider. We thought that we’d lost this place for<br />

good after the sale, so please do pop over and give<br />

them your support. Opening hours are from 5pm.<br />

The MONKS RETREAT in Friar Street, which<br />

was sold by Wetherspoons to Stonegate Pub<br />

Company a year or so ago, finally closed for a<br />

long-promised refurbishment and reopened in late<br />

August. We had expected a name change but it<br />

seems that the old name has been kept<br />

The pub, which opened in 1994, and the street<br />

it is on were both named after the Franciscan<br />

monks who came to Reading in the 13th century.<br />

The well-known “hanging monk” who could be<br />

seen dangling from a rope underneath the skylight<br />

didn’t survive the refurb – he was put up for sale<br />

on Ebay and raised £1,040 for the Noah’s Ark<br />

Children’s Hospice in London.<br />

Also on Friar Street, WILD LIME has had the<br />

latest in what seems to be its “every second year”<br />

refit. Real ale is available.<br />

SWEENEY AND TODD on Castle Street is for<br />

sale. This unique Reading institution has been<br />

advertised on websites including Daltons Business<br />

with a guide price of £1.5 million for the freehold<br />

of the whole of this listed building, including the<br />

shop, bar, restaurant and upper floors. The pies<br />

are famous across the country and we sincerely<br />

hope that we can continue to enjoy them in the<br />

future, alongside the four real ales on the bar.<br />

The WHITE EAGLE on Oxford Road is reported<br />

to have closed. Formerly the New Inn, this pub<br />

didn’t serve real ale but was known for a wide<br />

array of Polish bottled beers at reasonable prices.<br />

Plans have been unveiled for a new development<br />

in the area of the old Bristol and West Arcade on<br />

Friar Street / Market Place which include a new<br />

public house, alongside shops, a public courtyard<br />

and 64 flats. The pub is to replace the former<br />

Coopers Arms on the site, which has been vacant<br />

for a number of years. At the time of going to press<br />

no planning application had been submitted.<br />


News reaches us that Keith and Sharon are moving<br />

on after a good number of years at the ROYAL<br />

OAK on Westwood Glen. The transformation<br />

that occurred under their stewardship to what<br />

was a pretty moribund pub was little short of<br />

remarkable, from improving the range and quality<br />

of the real ale to cultivating a fantastic outdoor<br />

garden and uncovering (and utilising) the old<br />

fireplace in the lounge. The pub was included<br />

in the Good Beer Guide for every available year<br />

under their tenure which is an impressive record in<br />

itself. We hope that the new licensees will continue<br />

to build on the good work that has happened here.<br />


The BULL AND CHEQUERS in Church Road<br />

offers a 10% discount to CAMRA members. This<br />

Greene King house offers up to three real ales and<br />

has a large garden with seating plus a paved patio.<br />

Food is served until 10pm (9pm on Sundays) and<br />

Sky and BT Sports are on offer – plus there’s a<br />

darts team.<br />

Beers noted on a summer visit to BEL AND<br />

THE DRAGON on Gasworks Road (near the<br />

Prudential offices) were Rebellion IPA, West Berks<br />

Good Old Boy and Loddon Reading Best. The bar<br />

offers three real ales from local breweries and you<br />

can visit for a drink without needing to go into the<br />

restaurant or order food.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />



The brewery has a new owner – we’re awaiting<br />

details of his plans for the beer range.<br />


Macchiato Stout and Twyford Tipple both<br />

received recognition at the south east SIBA<br />

awards, with both winning bronze awards. Last<br />

year’s Champion Beer of Britain, Vanilla Stout, is<br />

available in bottled form from the brewery shop<br />

in Ruscombe.<br />

The latest in the Hop Project<br />

is Citra Southern Cross with<br />

a citrus and tropical fruit<br />

hop character dominating<br />

this 4.5% extra pale ale. The<br />

latest monthly special created<br />

by brewer Ricky Moysey<br />

isPith&Zest,a5%ABV<br />

orange IPA brewed with the<br />

addition of orange peel for<br />

a zesty refreshing orange<br />

note. Autumn into Winter<br />

will see the return of the<br />

dark side, with Woodsmoke Porter, V Old<br />

Ale and The Warmer all being brewed as monthly<br />

specials.<br />

The brewery shop is proving ever popular and<br />

customers can now click and collect from the<br />

online shop to save time. Brewery tours are also<br />

bookable online and include 3 pints and a pint<br />

glass to take home.<br />


New limited-edition beer “Whirlybird” is an<br />

American style bitter. Lifting off with five types<br />

of malted barley and wheat whilst a combination<br />

of U.S. hops hover to provide the bitterness<br />

and finally landing with aromas of orange and<br />

grapefruit. Due to popular demand “Bengal<br />

Tiger”, a 4.3% ABV English style IPA has been<br />

rebrewed.<br />


Bottle-conditioned Bodger’s<br />

Barley Wine (8.5% ABV) won<br />

3 Gold Stars at this year’s Great<br />

Taste Awards. That puts it in<br />

the top 1.3% of the 12,500<br />

products entered and means<br />

it is put forward to a regional<br />

Golden Fork award and<br />

possibly Supreme Champion.<br />

Judges’ comments included<br />

“A rich, honeyed, brandylike<br />

flavour with hints of<br />

pear-drop sweetness and<br />

warming spice. A wintery, after-dinner,<br />

fireside beer with a brilliant head, extraordinary<br />

resinous hoppy notes and a full, spicy impact.”<br />

Bottle-conditioned Lord-Lieutenant’s Cream<br />

Porter (6% ABV) won one Gold Star with this<br />

comment “This has been made with a delicate<br />

touch but in no way lacking in impact or fullness”<br />

as did gluten free bottled 300’s Dark Old Ale (5%<br />

ABV) “There is a rich, toasty malt aroma giving it<br />

some real appeal”.<br />

The brewery has been voted the Central Chilterns<br />

Champion in The Chiltern Society Craft Beer<br />

Awards. Their highest rated ale was bottled John<br />

Hampden’s Golden Harvest Ale (4.8% ABV) and<br />

members of the judging panel included CAMRA’s<br />

Central Southern Regional Director, Carl Griffin.<br />

John Hampden’s, which is certified gluten free,<br />

was also selected as Editor’s Choice and was the<br />

only one of 6 ales to be awarded 5 stars in Gluten<br />

Free Heaven Magazine’s recent taste test.<br />

Autumn is a busy time for draught ales with 4<br />

seasonal or limited edition specials coming up<br />

– Kop Hill Ale (3.7% ABV), the official ale for<br />

the hill climb event in Princes Risborough in<br />

September, red and spicy Copper Beech (4.4%<br />

ABV) in September-October, 300’s Dark Old Ale<br />

(4.9% ABV) in October and mellow and fruity<br />

Foxtrot (3.9% ABV) for November.<br />

The brewery shop in Terrick near Wendover in<br />

Bucks is well worth a visit for some original and<br />

unique gift ideas – which are also available online<br />

at chilternbrewery.co.uk.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />



Collaboration brews have taken place with<br />

Torrside Brewing (Creature of Havoc), Weird<br />

Beard (Lord Nelson), Wild Weather (Fight Like a<br />

Dairy Farmer) and Vibrant Forest (Hazy Duke).<br />

A collab brew with Fiveclouds Brewco will have<br />

taken place by the time this goes to print.<br />


This historic Oxfordshire brewery has tasted<br />

success at the World Beer Awards 2017, where an<br />

international and highly respected judging panel<br />

identified the best beers from each country across<br />

72 styles.<br />

In the United Kingdom category, top honours<br />

went to Red Rye 4.7% ABV, a ruby red, fruity<br />

ale. It picked up United Kingdom’s Best Rye Beer<br />

and then went on to win the World’s Best Rye<br />

Beer, repeating its success from 2015. Further<br />

success came with Playing Hooky 4.7% ABV, a<br />

pale, amber, malty biscuit brew picking up Bronze<br />

in the United Kingdom, Pale Ale category. Old<br />

Hooky 4.6% ABV, 40 years young this year, was<br />

voted United Kingdom’s Best English Brown Ale,<br />

showing that there is still a place and recognition<br />

for a full bodied, classic real ale in an ever<br />

increasingly craft market.<br />

All of the award winning beers are available year<br />

round in 500ml and 330ml bottles direct from the<br />

brewery and online at hooky.co.uk<br />

LODDON<br />

The limited edition beer Golden<br />

Bullet was brewed for the summer<br />

and should still be available. This<br />

4.6% ABV golden ale is a favourite<br />

from the brewery, packed with<br />

flavour and character. Fuggles and<br />

Brewers Gold hops – an old English<br />

variety now grown in Germany and<br />

Alsace – impart a spiciness and wellbalanced<br />

bitterness which makes<br />

Golden Bullet perfect for summer<br />

drinking.<br />

the club’s bar – including a new official club beer<br />

called Hawks’ Gold, a 4.4% ABV golden bitter –<br />

and all Henley RFC members can now enjoy 10%<br />

off all Loddon products in the brewery shop. Shop<br />

opening hours have been extended to 7pm on<br />

Fridays, so it’s now even easier to pop in and pick<br />

up some beer for the weekend.<br />

For September an old beer is returning but it may<br />

be under a different name. POTUS is a lovely<br />

4.7% ABV American pale ale but not everybody<br />

wants to be associated with the President of the<br />

United States at the moment, so a name change is<br />

being considered.<br />


The Rebellion Charity Weekend 2017 raised a<br />

massive £65,000 for charity. Despite some rain<br />

over 5,000 people attended the weekend where<br />

free beer and entertainment were on offer. Guests<br />

could donate at the entrance and managed to<br />

smash the 2015 figure of £58,000 raised, which<br />

was a fantastic surprise. Rebellion would like to<br />

thank everyone for coming along and making the<br />

weekend so enjoyable and like to thank them all<br />

for their generosity, along with all the bands who<br />

played and donated their time for free.<br />

The brewery have teamed up with newly-promoted<br />

Maidenhead United FC to offer a hospitality bar<br />

in the new Alan Devonshire suite for the first three<br />

games of the Conference season.<br />

The monthly specials continue with:<br />

September – Excalibur (4.2% ABV), pale and<br />

hoppy.<br />

October – Engineer (4.2% ABV), chestnut and<br />

crisp.<br />

November – Braveheart (4.2% ABV), amber and<br />

malty.<br />

The autumn beer for September and October is<br />

Red (4.7% ABV), a warming, autumnal red ale,<br />

rich and malty, with a balancing bittersweet hop<br />

character.<br />

The bottled version of Rebellion Lager (4.4%<br />

ABV) is now in the brewery shop – they are<br />

limiting sales to a maximum of three cases per<br />

customer for the time being. The shop is open<br />

Monday – Saturday 8am – 7pm.<br />

Loddon Brewery is joining Henley<br />

Rugby Club as an elite sponsor for the next<br />

three years. The brewery and the club have a longstanding<br />

association and are delighted to be joining<br />

forces. Loddon beers will be on permanently in<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

8<br />


Look out for a range of coffee-flavoured brews as<br />

part of the Project Barista project - “a celebration<br />

of the sublime flavours that coffee can impart on<br />

beers.” Siren have been big fans of using coffee

in beer since they started out four years ago; in<br />

fact they have a beer that uses coffee in their core<br />

range – Broken Dream. This series aims to take<br />

the relationship between beer and coffee in new<br />

directions and the beers are:<br />

• Crema – 4.9% ABV sweet white stout with<br />

German whiskey barrel aged coffee<br />

• AmcapHeine – 6.2% ABV kettle sour with<br />

Kenyan coffee and raspberries<br />

• Hibiscusericano – 9.2% ABV double IPA with<br />

Ethiopian coffee<br />

• Turkish – 10% ABV imperial stout with<br />

coffee, figs, Muscovado, nutmeg, orange zest,<br />

cacao nibs and vanilla.<br />


Find their beers at the Sherfield Beer Festival which<br />

is being held at Sherfield Village Hall on Saturday<br />

30 September from 11.30am till 11pm. More than<br />

40 beers and ciders will be available alongside hot<br />

food and live music. Tickets are £4 in advance or<br />

£5 on the door. Free minibus to and from Bramley<br />

station in the evening. Info: Gilly Woodland, gillian.<br />

woodland@duckwood.co.uk, 07738 011 708.<br />


Beers from this microbrewery in White Waltham<br />

have been seen on sale locally including at the<br />

Royal Oak in Knowl Hill, where our reporter<br />

found the 4% ABV English Bitter to be “seriously<br />

tasty”. Other ales from Stardust include 3.8% ABV<br />

Easy Pale, 4.5% ABV American Pale and a 5.6%<br />

ABV offering with the unusual name of PK3, which<br />

is a “5 hop variety … tropical, fruity and spicy.”<br />


Two of West Berkshire’s<br />

ales won awards in<br />

CAMRA’s Champion<br />

Beer of Britain<br />

Competition, announced<br />

in August. Good Old Boy<br />

was awarded Bronze in<br />

the Best Bitter Category,<br />

whilst the deliciously<br />

rich Maggs’ Magnificent<br />

Mild scooped Silver in<br />

the Mild category.<br />

“This is a fantastic achievement for our beers and<br />

for our brewers,” said West Berkshire Brewery<br />

CEO Simon Lewis, delighted with the wins. “Good<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

9<br />

Old Boy was one of our original beers and we<br />

believe it to be one of the very best bitters out<br />

there – it’s great to see that CAMRA agree with<br />

us! Maggs’ Magnificent Mild is deliciously rich<br />

and smooth, and to have been awarded silver is<br />

a sign of its quality and great flavour. With such<br />

fierce opposition from other beers within these<br />

categories, we’re honoured to see both ales win<br />

awards in such an important competition.”<br />

Good Old Boy (4% ABV), the company’s<br />

flagship ale, is notably well-balanced and packed<br />

with flavour. This classic bitter is brewed with<br />

traditional Maris Otter malted barley and fruity<br />

Bramling Cross and Northdown hops. Maggs’<br />

Magnificent Mild (3.8% ABV), is a traditionally<br />

styled, dark mild. Full of roast malt flavours offset<br />

with a subtle sweetness which combine to make it<br />

superbly smooth to drink, the silver award adds to<br />

an already impressive list of awards to its name.<br />

The OktoberWest Bierfest is back, this year being<br />

held on Saturday 23 September. There are two<br />

sessions: daytime from 12-5pm and evening from<br />

6-11pm. More details are available at wbbrew.com<br />

The brewery are also looking for full time dynamic<br />

and proactive drivers. Successful candidates will<br />

have at least a year’s experience of professional<br />

delivery driving, a full clean UK driving licence and<br />

an appetite to achieve. If you think you’ve got what<br />

it takes to join the team, then please send your CV<br />

including a covering letter to:<br />

olly.ford-lane@wbbrew.co.uk<br />



The Editor writes:<br />

When I changed jobs last year, one of my leaving<br />

presents was a pair of tickets for the Windsor &<br />

Eton Brewery tour. I finally got around to using<br />

them this summer and I was very impressed. I<br />

particularly liked the way that they wove a story<br />

around the various styles of beer, alongside the<br />

history of the brewery and the types of ingredients<br />

used.<br />

Brewery tours can sometimes be a case of “There’s<br />

the mash tun and fermenting vessel ... here’s some<br />

malt for you to taste ... have some random beer”,<br />

which are fine but this one was very well structured<br />

and informative. I was working out afterwards that<br />

I’ve been on over 40 brewery tours over the years<br />

but I still learnt some new things from this one.

There was a good range of people on the tour and<br />

I thoroughly recommend it.<br />

Open tours run every second Wednesday in the<br />

evening, starting at 7.30pm. Look at webrew.<br />

co.uk/tours for information and to book a place.<br />

XT / ANIMAL<br />

XT have launched a beer<br />

pioneering the use of new British<br />

hop varieties. The beer called Brit<br />

Hop, a 5% ABV pale ale, uses<br />

as yet unreleased hops as part<br />

of the British Hop Association<br />

development programme. It was<br />

available first at the XT Brewery<br />

Bar in Olympia for the Great<br />

British Beer Festival, and then<br />

had a limited release in selected<br />

local pubs.<br />

The aim of the programme is to produce varieties<br />

that are capable of rivalling US and other new<br />

world hops for flavour. The development successes<br />

so far have included new British varieties such as<br />

Jester, Olicana and Minstrel. XT have been selected<br />

to brew with the experimental varieties and provide<br />

feedback both on the technicalities during brewing<br />

and how the hop flavours perform in trade and<br />

whether the customers like or dislike the beers.<br />

Another area of beer R&D for XT has been the<br />

development of their new “craft lager” Eisbar. The<br />

first trial batches of the new 5% ABV Vienna style<br />

lager – which is both unfiltered and unpasteurised –<br />

sold out so fast the brewery had to limit its release.<br />

The beer is properly “lagered” meaning it’s held to<br />

condition naturally for six weeks, which presents a<br />

few production and capacity issues for the brewer.<br />

As a result of the success of the trials, and to meet<br />

demand, new specialist lagering vessels are being<br />

installed over the summer. The beer should be<br />

available now from a short list of selected pubs.<br />

The Animal cask beers have proven to be<br />

very popular over the years and, as a birthday<br />

celebration, a series of re-brews have been selected<br />

by landlords, beer club members and devoted<br />

drinkers. The first revisit was Buffalo the American<br />

Amber, and later will see the return of other old<br />

favourites such as Manta Ray and Heron.<br />

XT beer is on tour and travelling abroad in<br />

September to represent British brewing – Munich<br />

for DrinkTech and Slovenia with the British<br />

Chamber of Commerce.<br />





FRIDAY 10AM - 7PM<br />

& SATURDAY 12 - 6PM<br />


£1 OFF<br />

WHEN<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

10<br />



VALID UNTIL 31/12/17<br />

T&Cs: Valid for £1 off any £15 purchase in the Brewery Shop. Not valid for home deliveries, online purchases, gift vouchers or in conjunction<br />

with any other offer or voucher. No cash value. Void if copied or transferred. You must be 18+ to purchase alchohol

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


Beer Scoring<br />

Have you ever wondered about how pubs get into<br />

the Good Beer Guide (GBG)? Unlike those guides<br />

where paid individuals submit reviews, GBG<br />

entries are compiled from beer scores submitted by<br />

CAMRA members. Every single CAMRA member<br />

has the opportunity to contribute to the GBG, by<br />

submitting quality scores for the beers they have<br />

drunk.<br />

So how do you submit them? The easiest way is<br />

to log onto CAMRA’s WhatPub.com. The default<br />

login details are your CAMRA membership<br />

number (without any leading zeroes) as username<br />

and the password you created at the time of<br />

signing-up. If you have difficulty logging in, there’s<br />

help on the screen. In fact, there’s plenty of help<br />

for all steps in getting your pub scores entered! It’s<br />

up to you how you record your scores while in the<br />

pub - scraps of paper, notebooks, or on a smart<br />

phone, whatever suits you.<br />

While the concept of sitting at the bar with a<br />

notebook giving your beer a points score might<br />

seem a little obsessive, in fact beer scoring is a<br />

vital tool of CAMRA’s ongoing campaign for good<br />

beer and good pubs. There are over 150 pubs in<br />

our branch so we need members from across the<br />

region to help us gather information about them<br />

year-round.<br />

The scores are on an 11 point scale (0-5, by halfmark):<br />

0 = No cask ale available.<br />

1 = Beer that is anything from barely drinkable to<br />

drinkable with considerable resentment. Includes<br />

beer taken back as being poor and not taken off<br />

sale.<br />

2 = Competently kept; drinkable but doesn’t<br />

inspire in any way. Below what is expected for the<br />

GBG.<br />

3 = Good beer in good form. A GBG user (i.e.<br />

you!) would not be disappointed with it. You may<br />

seek out the beer again in the same session.<br />

4 = Very good: Excellent beer in excellent<br />

condition. Exceeds expectations.<br />

5 = Probably the best beer you are likely to find. A<br />

seasoned drinker will award this score very rarely.<br />

Don’t give a pint 5 just because it’s (say) Doom Bar<br />

and you happen to like Doom Bar. Think: in your<br />

experience is this beer in front of you a really good<br />

example of a Doom Bar, or a pretty poor one? And<br />

don’t give a pint 0 because it’s a stout and you<br />

happen to hate stouts. If in doubt, don’t score, or<br />

maybe ask a friend what they think. Most people<br />

can tell the difference between a beer that just<br />

happens to have a flavour that “isn’t for them”<br />

and a beer with actual defects.<br />

Gradually, as you walk around pubs, you’ll<br />

accumulate scores and begin to develop your own<br />

method of making comparisons. It’s like riding a<br />

bike. Soon it becomes second nature.<br />

Some people do find beer scoring confusing and<br />

are unsure as to the ‘correct way’ to record a<br />

beer score. But you don’t need to be particularly<br />

knowledgeable about every beer you might come<br />

across! The great thing about real ale is the<br />

diversity of tastes. Here are a few things to take<br />

note of when evaluating an ale:<br />

1. Look: Assess the colour, clarity and the foam<br />

of the pint. Golden ales should appear bright<br />

and clear while darker beers, such as stouts and<br />

porters, possess a richer colour and often a thick,<br />

creamy head. As a general rule of thumb it’s best<br />

to base your view on whether it looks appealing.<br />

If it’s got bits in it, or looks very flat (no head) it’s<br />

looking like a duffer.<br />

2. Smell: Smell is an important part of the drinking<br />

experience. Take a short sniff of your drink to<br />

assess the aroma. If it’s immediately repulsive –<br />

smelling of vinegar or chemicals – then it’s a fair<br />

bet that the pint you have is poor.<br />

3. Taste: Take a sip and let it flow around your<br />

mouth before swallowing. Beers can reflect many<br />

taste sensations. The intensity of the flavours and<br />

the finish (the ‘aftertaste’) make up the whole taste.<br />

Give your taste buds a few seconds to register all<br />

the differing sensations. Has the publican kept<br />

the beer well enough to allow the flavour to come<br />

through fully?<br />

4. Mouthfeel: How does it ‘feel’ in the mouth?<br />

Most well-kept ales will have a light carbonation<br />

and feel ‘alive’. Well, they are! They should be<br />

served at cellar temperature – that means cool,<br />

not cold. Ales that are warm and/or as flat as old<br />

dishwater are definitely not good. ‘Flat’ beers can<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


often indicate that the beer has hit the end of the<br />

barrel (imagine the dregs left in a bottle of cola<br />

that has been open a few hours) – this is a natural<br />

part of the cycle of the barrel’s lifespan and a good<br />

publican will be happy to check if you suspect an<br />

ale is at ‘bottom’ and replace it with a fresh pint<br />

from elsewhere.<br />

With thousands of ales to choose from, everyone<br />

has their own personal favourites and things that<br />

they don’t like, so please try to give an honest<br />

account of how well-kept a particular beer is. If<br />

you aren’t sure then try to do your scoring based on<br />

beers that you know that you normally like when<br />

they are in good condition.<br />

So much for submitting the scores, what happens<br />

next?<br />

All the scores recorded for our local pubs are<br />

collated and entered into a master spreadsheet.<br />

This contains an agreed algorithm that compresses<br />

bulk scores and produces the overall figures for<br />

multiple-level scores, amongst other things. At the<br />

end of the year, those pubs which have scored 80%<br />

or above scores of 3+ and have been ‘visited’ at least<br />

20 times (exceptions are occasionally made for our<br />

more rural pubs) are presented to the GBG selection<br />

meeting. This is part of a general branch meeting<br />

so any card-carrying CAMRA member may attend!<br />

Usually, the top 10-14 are waived through blind; if<br />

they’re this good on the beer quality, they must go<br />

in. The rest are then opened up to a general debate<br />

to the floor, from which follows a vote to decide<br />

the remaining places. Surveys are taken, entries are<br />

submitted to CAMRA HQ and then they appear in<br />

the following GBG. Simple.<br />

So, your vote does count. Judging the best pubs in<br />

Britain is something you are uniquely placed to do.<br />

Please take the time to beer score and make your<br />

contribution to the Good Beer Guide!<br />

UK ’ sBest-Selling Beer& Pub Guide<br />



So if you sent in some beer scores in the last year<br />

or two, why not see the end result? The new Good<br />

Beer Guide 2018 is out in September and lists<br />

the best pubs in the UK as selected by CAMRA<br />

members, together with the most extensive brewery<br />

listings of any guide. Go to shop.camra.org.uk to<br />

order your copy today.<br />

Quinten Taylor and James Moore<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Small Beer<br />

A roundup of news and information.<br />



Do you like beer? Do you like pubs? Do you like<br />

meeting other people who like beer and pubs?<br />

Then why not come along to one of our “First<br />

Thursday of the Month” socials?<br />

Every month, on the first Thursday at 8pm,<br />

you’ll find a group of CAMRA members at a<br />

pub somewhere in the branch area. On the cover<br />

there’s a picture of us at the August social in the<br />

Allied Arms. Come down and meet us sometime<br />

– it’s fun and you get to drink real ale, cider or<br />

perry with a lovely bunch of people. The next one<br />

is on Thursday 5 October at the Fox and Hounds<br />

in City Road in Tilehurst. Everyone’s welcome,<br />

including partners, and we’d love to see you there.<br />

Following its win in our branch competition, the<br />

Nags Head in Russell Street, Reading has gone on<br />

to win the CAMRA Central Southern Cider Pub of<br />

the Year title, seeing off challenges from the Cross<br />

Keys in Thame and the Royal Oak in Wantage.<br />

Seen here are Elvis Evans (CAMRA’s Regional<br />

Cider Coordinator, left) and James Moore (Branch<br />

Vice-Chairman, right) presenting the certificate to<br />

Lola Lodge of the Nags Head. CAMRA celebrates<br />

cider and perry in October, and ideas are still<br />

under development but check back on our website<br />

readingcamra.org.uk where we’ll post details of<br />

what’s happening.<br />

Just before we went to press we received even<br />

more good news about the Nags. Not content with<br />

the regional cider win, the pub also triumphed in<br />

the prestigious Regional Pub of the Year contest.<br />

This time facing contenders from Oxon (the Royal<br />

Oak again) and Bucks (the Valiant Trooper in<br />

Aldbury), judges voted the Nags Head the best<br />

pub in the three counties. This puts it into the final<br />

16 in the UK, an amazing achievement of which<br />

the team can be rightly proud. Judging continues<br />

to work out which will be the supreme champion,<br />

and the winner will be announced next year.<br />


What can you do for CAMRA? If the article in this<br />

magazine has made you stop and think about this,<br />

why not come along to our branch AGM and find<br />

out more? This year we’re having an experiment –<br />

previously the AGMs have been held on weekday<br />

evenings but this time we’re trying a Saturday<br />

afternoon and followed up the AGM with a pub<br />

crawl.<br />

This is your chance to get more involved with<br />

your branch, either by taking on a committee<br />

post, volunteering for something like helping to<br />

distribute Mine’s a <strong>Pint</strong>, or just to chat to active<br />

CAMRA members and find out a bit more about<br />

what we do. At the moment we’re really looking<br />

for somebody to act as our young members’<br />

contact, to be our liaison point with local clubs or<br />

to keep an eye on political activities as they affect<br />

CAMRA, but there are plenty of roles so if there’s<br />

something that you’re particularly interested in,<br />

come along and find out more.<br />

Come along to the Griffin in Church Road,<br />

Caversham on Saturday 11 November at 12.00.<br />

If you’d like to have a chat beforehand about<br />

what being an active volunteer might mean, please<br />

contact Quinno our branch chairman on 07887<br />

424232.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />



balanced beer with a hoppy edge. We originally<br />

brewed and named it for a festival taking place<br />

in the Goat pub, and the beer just caught on. It’s<br />

the first time we’ve won the competition, and we<br />

expect it to put us on the map.”<br />

Our local West Berkshire Brewery also picked up<br />

two awards in the contest – read about them in the<br />

Brewery News section.<br />




CAMRA has crowned Goat’s Milk by Church End<br />

Brewery the Champion Beer of Britain 2017. The<br />

Warwickshire brewery, originally located in an<br />

old coffin shop, won the prestigious award on the<br />

opening day of the Great British Beer Festival at<br />

Olympia, thanks to its blend of pale barley, crystal<br />

malt oats and aromatic hops in their beer.<br />

The award comes after almost a year of local<br />

tasting panels and regional heats resulting in the<br />

best beers from across the UK being invited to<br />

compete.<br />

Bishop Nick Brewery from Essex took silver with<br />

Ridley’s Rite, a pale ale with a floral aroma and<br />

satisfying bitterness, while Welsh brewery Tiny<br />

Rebel – former Champion Beer of Britain winner<br />

– won bronze with Cwtch, a red ale with a blend<br />

of six caramelly malts and three citrussy American<br />

hops.<br />

Nick Boley, CAMRA’s National Director<br />

responsible for the competition said:<br />

“Congratulations to Church End for winning the<br />

Champion Beer of Britain award for Goat’s Milk,<br />

which is the highest beer accolade in the country.<br />

Goat’s Milk is a stand out beer - it has a lovely<br />

balance of malts and hops and a full flavour. It<br />

is a very fine example of a bitter and incredibly<br />

refreshing.”<br />

Paul Hamblett, sales manager from Church End<br />

said:<br />

“Goat’s Milk is our biggest selling beer - it’s a nicely<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

17<br />

The Reading & Mid Berks CAMRA Gala Awards<br />

Evening is coming up and everyone is invited!<br />

Hosted this year by the Three Guineas at Reading<br />

Station in their newly refurbished cellar bar, the<br />

evening is a chance to celebrate the best of local<br />

breweries and pubs. Those receiving recognition<br />

will be:<br />

• Regional Pub of the Year<br />

• Our pubs and club of the year awards<br />

• The Beer & Cider Festival Local Beers of<br />

the Festival awards (category winners and<br />

Overall Gold, Silver & Bronze)<br />

• Special Awards for outstanding contributions<br />

Thursday 21 September is the date for your<br />

diary. We’ll be gathering about 8pm with the<br />

presentations from about 8.30pm. Entry is free so<br />

this is a great chance to come and meet the brewers<br />

and publicans that do so much to enrich our lives.<br />


Watch out for the latest Ascot Beer Festival,<br />

this year being held on Friday 6 and Saturday 7<br />

October. It’s organised every year by our friends<br />

at Berkshire South East CAMRA at the famous<br />

Ascot Racecourse, just a short train ride from<br />

Reading. Once again this year there will be around<br />

200 different real ales and over 30 real ciders and<br />

perries to choose from.<br />

As well as a fabulous selection of drinks, the<br />

festival will also offer some top class flat racing

and the chance to have a flutter if you fancy, plus<br />

live music. Entry tickets are now on sale with 50%<br />

off for CAMRA members who use a discount<br />

code, and remember that this is a token-based<br />

festival so you also have to buy beer vouchers<br />

before you can enjoy your beer – they’re available<br />

on the day or in advance.<br />

There’s no dress code for the part of the Grandstand<br />

where the festival’s held, although the course does<br />

encourage all visitors to dress smartly. Of course<br />

if you buy one of the many premier admission<br />

packages that require you to dress up, you can still<br />

visit the beer festival and many people do.<br />

See ascotbeerfest.org.uk for more details of<br />

the festival including how to buy tickets and,<br />

importantly, how to volunteer to work.<br />



Five of Skinners core range of bottled beers have<br />

been recognised as vegetarian and vegan friendly.<br />

With the exception of Hops ’n’ Honey and Penny<br />

Come Quick, all of their bottled ales are vegan<br />

and vegetarian. Lushingtons is now also available<br />

kegged, which is also vegan and vegetarian.<br />


The latest general election saw some changes that<br />

will affect the beer and pub industry. Chair of the<br />

British Pub Confederation Liberal Democrat MP<br />

Greg Mulholland lost his Leeds North West seat,<br />

losing out to Labour’s Alex Sobel by 4,224 votes.<br />

Conservative MP Andrew Percy, who was pubs<br />

minister before the election, kept his Brigg and<br />

Goole seat with 60% of the vote, but was replaced<br />

in the subsequent reshuffle by Jake Berry, MP for<br />

Rossendale and Darwen.<br />

Berry said that he would ensure the pub sector was<br />

given his attention, despite it being only a small<br />

part of a wider suite of responsibilities. The British<br />

Beer and Pub Association welcomed Berry’s<br />

appointment, which is often a bad sign as far as<br />

drinkers are concerned.<br />


Skinners Brewery from Truro, Cornwall, have<br />

seen their Lushingtons bottled beer crowned as<br />

Best Vegetarian Beer at the Veggie Awards 2017.<br />

The judging panel included leading figures of the<br />

vegetarian community; best-selling cookbook<br />

authors of The Happy Pear, author Rose Elliot of<br />

New Complete Vegetarian and lifestyle blogger<br />

and author Niomi Smart.<br />

Founder Steve Skinner said:<br />

“We’ve worked in accordance with the guidelines<br />

of the Vegan Society to ensure all of our ales pass<br />

their guidelines and we are delighted this work has<br />

paid off with an award for a delicious beer!”<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

18<br />



While Team GB may not have set the place alight<br />

in the recent Athletics World Championships,<br />

a group from Wycombe have been enjoying a<br />

combination of running and pubs. High Wycombe<br />

Hash House Harriers (HWH3) is a running<br />

group with the motto “Runners with a Drinking<br />

Problem” who meet every Tuesday at any pub<br />

within a 10-mile radius of High Wycombe. This<br />

sees them venture regularly into Oxfordshire,<br />

Berkshire, and occasionally beyond, as well as<br />

their home county of Bucks.<br />

A number of them are CAMRA members and are<br />

keen to promote good pubs serving good beer.<br />

There’s a review section on their website hwh3.<br />

co.uk/pubs and they’d welcome any feedback<br />

on how to improve it and make it better for a<br />

wider audience. They also have their own Pub<br />

of the Year competition, as voted for by HWH3<br />

members. Winners have included the Wheel<br />

at Naphill in 2016, and the Royal Standard at<br />

Wooburn Common in 2015.

32 Supporting Real Ale, Real Cider & Real Pubs in East Berkshire and South Buckinghamshire www.swm.camra.org.uk





Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

A New Kind of Beer Festival<br />






You might wonder why it has taken the Society<br />

for the Preservation of Beers from the Wood<br />

(SPBW) 54 years to run its own beer festival.<br />

After all CAMRA, formed in 1971, held its first<br />

Great British Beer Festival in 1977, or 1975 if you<br />

count Covent Garden. The reason is mainly that<br />

after the advent and greater success of CAMRA,<br />

SPBW faded into the background, was happy to<br />

accept that real ale was fine in a metal as well as a<br />

wooden barrel (keeping the name for the sake of<br />

tradition) and largely reinvented itself as a social<br />

club. I have been informed that at one stage it<br />

even passed a motion that it would not hold a beer<br />

festival!<br />

In recent years, however, things have changed.<br />

There has been a revival of interest in beer from<br />

the wood (BFTW), especially north of the Wash,<br />

and several new branches have begun to campaign<br />

much more actively for BFTW, not least the North-<br />

East branch, headed by Rob Shacklock.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

21<br />

This revival has been enthusiastically greeted by<br />

some CAMRA notables, particularly Roger Protz,<br />

and in the Rugby League stronghold of Castleford,<br />

West Yorkshire, there is a pub called the Junction<br />

(‘Junkie’ for short) that serves real ale only from<br />

the wood.<br />

The first national Woodfest of BFTW duly took<br />

place in the first week in July in Castleford in a<br />

derelict pub that has been acquired by the ‘Junkie’<br />

landlord, Neil Midgley, and proved to be an ideal<br />

location for a first, relatively small-scale event. A<br />

committee under Rob Shacklock organised the<br />

festival and the undersigned played a small part in<br />

helping run the tombola as well as stimulating new<br />

memberships and branches. Dignitaries present<br />

included Vivian Bairstow, past Master of the<br />

Worshipful Company of Coopers, Alastair Simms,<br />

Master Cooper and, replete in his chain of office,<br />

the Mayor of Wakefield. CAMRA and SPBW<br />

branches from far and wide attended, including a<br />

party from the Chesapeake Bay branch across the<br />

pond.<br />

Beers from nearly 40 breweries were on offer<br />

and these competed for the coveted award of<br />

Champion beer from the wood. The judges who<br />

included Roger Protz, as well as the Chairman of<br />

SPBW, Patrick Deller, seemed to take a long time<br />

reaching their decision (can you blame them?) but<br />

eventually a winner emerged and it was a pleasant<br />

surprise to find that it came from a well-established<br />

brewery south of the Wash – Haymaker from<br />

Hook Norton. This was awarded Gold while Silver<br />

went to Moonbeam from Half Moon and Bronze<br />

to Elland’s Beyond the Pale, both these Yorkshire<br />

breweries. As well as the overall winners, winners<br />

of the various categories comprised Box Social<br />

(porter), York (stout), Tigertops (strong dark)

and Monty’s Brewery (IPA). The beer range also<br />

included several brews from across the Irish Sea,<br />

both north and south.<br />

Following this initial success, Woodfest will be<br />

moving to the Tyne in 2018 but thereafter we hope<br />

that the festival will move south.<br />

John Dearing<br />

John is a former chairman of Reading CAMRA.<br />

He heads the local branch of SPBW (Common<br />

& Aldbrickham) and is also the Society’s Branch<br />

Liaison Officer.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


New Wharf Brewing Company<br />

Kevin has a long pedigree in home brewing and<br />

was the winner of the 2016 Welsh Homebrew<br />

Competition. The 20 barrel (5,760 pint) plant is<br />

large for a new brewery and the list of planned<br />

beers is equally ambitious, including an American<br />

Pale Ale, an American Amber, a Breakfast Stout, a<br />

Double IPA, an American IPA, a Kölsch, a Mango<br />

and raspberry Berliner Weisse and an American<br />

Cream Ale with vanilla.<br />

New Wharf Brewing Company is a new brewery<br />

based in Maidenhead and due to open in early<br />

September. Kevin Black from Burghfield (pictured)<br />

is the head brewer and intends to develop and<br />

create a full range of beer that will be available<br />

in cask, keykeg and bottle format. All beers will<br />

be unfined.<br />

Contact details: kevin@newwharfbrewing.co.uk /<br />

07815 717251 / @NewWharfBrewing<br />

2 Broad Street Reading, RG1 2BH<br />

01189 508119<br />

thealehousereading.co.uk<br />

enquiries@thealehousereading.co.uk<br />

3 West Berkshire Ales<br />

6 Guest Ales<br />

German & Belgian Beers<br />

Real Cider, Perry and Mead<br />

Local CAMRA Pub of the<br />

Year 2014 Runner Up<br />

Local CAMRA Cider<br />

Pub of the Year 2013 & 2014<br />

A Community pub in the<br />

heart of Reading <br />

Follow us on twitter<br />

@AlehouseReading<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


A.I. is too important<br />

to be left in the hands<br />

of machines.<br />


BEST<br />

BITtERS,<br />



WINTER<br />

AND SUMmER<br />


The A.I. we’re referring to isn’t Artificial<br />

Intelligence, it’s Ale Intelligence, of course.<br />

We’re not technophobes, we just don’t trust<br />

anything incapable of smelling, feeling or<br />

tasting to create something as delicately<br />

balanced as Landlord. That’s why we have<br />

five hands-on, Heriot-Watt trained brewers<br />

involved in every step of the process,<br />

from barley delivery to filling the casks.<br />

This way, we can make sure that every sip of<br />

Taylor’s is as delicious as humanly possible.<br />

Machines may one day take over the world, just<br />

be thankful you won’t be around to drink their<br />

terrible beer.<br />

All for that taste of Taylor’s<br />

Visit our brewery and distillery<br />

or buy at ramsbury.com<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


From the Archives<br />

Long before Mine’s a <strong>Pint</strong> existed, we had the<br />

Thames Valley Drinker magazine. This extract<br />

from an issue in 1984 illustrates just how prices<br />

have changed in the last three decades, with a<br />

pint available then for a little as 59p and no beer<br />

costing more than a pound.<br />

The reasons for price increases sound depressingly<br />

familiar, though.<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


The Further History of Lager<br />

in the UK<br />

Perhaps the oldest UK<br />

brewery to have attempted<br />

to produce a genuine lager<br />

was Mackesons, of Milk<br />

Stout fame, which brewed<br />

at Hythe in Kent between<br />

1669 and 1968 and is<br />

known to have produced<br />

an ‘Anglo-Lager Ale’, an<br />

English beer ‘brewed on the<br />

German principle’. It was<br />

also claimed to be ‘light<br />

and an excellent tonic’ and<br />

was presumably current prior to 1929 when the<br />

concern was initially taken over by H G Simonds<br />

of Reading, before being sold on to Jude, Hanbury<br />

& Co. Ltd., of Wateringbury, Kent, nine years<br />

later.<br />

The same, somewhat strange, epithet of ‘Anglo-<br />

Lager’ was also used to promote a Dinner Ale<br />

brewed by the Friary, Holroyd & Healy Breweries<br />

Ltd. in Guildford, Surrey, but how close to an<br />

actual lager style this was is pure conjecture. More<br />

reliably, in 1896, the concern of A F Perkins &<br />

Co. Ltd. in Southsea, Hampshire, was registered<br />

specifically as a lager brewery. Having started<br />

life as Henry Bradshaw’s Hyde Park Brewery, it<br />

was occupied by John & Arthur Brickwood (the<br />

noted Portsmouth brewers) between 1880 and<br />

1887 but, by the end of the 19th century, was in<br />

voluntary liquidation before the company was<br />

finally dissolved in July 1908.<br />

In London, along Point Pleasant, Wandsworth, the<br />

Union Brewery was built as a ‘26 quarter’ (i.e. 208<br />

bushels of malt) steam facility by Langton & Sons<br />

in 1866 but passed through a number of other<br />

brewers during the 1890s before the last expired<br />

due to bankruptcy in 1900. Then, in December<br />

1902, the Holsten Brewery Ltd. was registered<br />

at the same site which had a controlling interest<br />



THE UK<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />

26<br />

by the Holsten Brauerei of Hamburg for the first<br />

year or so of its existence before finally going into<br />

voluntary liquidation in 1920. It is inconceivable<br />

that a subsidiary brewery sharing its name with<br />

an infamous German sponsor would not have<br />

produced a true lager but, rather than attempt to<br />

brew its own, the nearby Young & Cos. Brewery<br />

Ltd. introduced a genuine imported lager, the<br />

German St. Pauli (also from Hamburg), to its pubs<br />

in 1907 up until the First World War.<br />

In March 1899, Liverpool had also got in on<br />

the act with the British Lager Brewery Co. Ltd.,<br />

being registered. However, just short of a 4-year<br />

existence, it was wound up at the end of 1902.<br />

Although Walker Cain Ltd. of nearby Warrington,<br />

founded 1864, constructed a Clarence Street<br />

Brewery in Burton-on-Trent in 1883, when Peter<br />

Walker & Sons (Warrington & Burton) Ltd. was<br />

registered in 1889, it occupied two other breweries<br />

in that famous brewing town where lager was<br />

known to have been produced. Whilst the Midland<br />

Brewery was only used between 1890 and 1895,<br />

the Shobnall Brewery lasted from that company’s<br />

inception until 1923 when lager brewing ceased<br />

with its sale to English Grains Ltd. Peter Walker<br />

relinquished the last of its three Burton operations<br />

just two years later with the sale of its original<br />

Clarence Street premises to Atkinson’s Brewery<br />

Ltd.<br />

Amongst the many notable pubs in Scotland’s<br />

capital city is Bennet’s Bar which has, arguably, the<br />

second finest internal features of any after the Café<br />

Royal. Amazingly, one of the magnificent double<br />

entrance doorways still exhibits an intact pair<br />

of stained glass panels depicting flip-top bottles<br />

for ‘Jeffrey’s Lager’. This was brewed by John<br />

Jeffrey & Co., Heriot Brewery, Edinburgh (1837-<br />

1960). Jeffreys was subsumed by a new company,<br />

Northern Breweries of Great Britain Ltd., formed<br />

in 1959 to amalgamate their operations with those

of Hammond’s United Breweries Ltd., Bradford,<br />

and those of the Hope & Anchor Breweries Ltd.,<br />

Sheffield, who, of course, a little over a decade<br />

earlier had usurped their own lager with Carling<br />

Black Label. Largely instigated by Carling’s<br />

brewery magnate owner, E P Taylor, this merger<br />

was cynically intended to widen the market for his<br />

Canadian lager beyond the 150 pubs that H&A<br />

controlled.<br />

Bennet’s Bar, at 8, Leven Street, Tolcross,<br />

Edinburgh, dating from 1891 but refitted fifteen<br />

years later, is Scottish Grade B (equivalent to<br />

between Grade II & II* in England & Wales)<br />

listed and is also on CAMRA’s National Inventory<br />

of Historic Pub Interiors. A pair of glazed doors to<br />

the extant ‘Bottle & Jug’ has similar panels for ‘W<br />

& J Jenkinson’s Bottled Beers & Aerated Waters,<br />

Leith’, a brewery of which little is known. Equally<br />

obscure was The Glasgow Lager Brewery of the<br />

1890s but this may have been a tradename of<br />

Tennent’s Well Park brewery included when that<br />

was registered as a Company in 1890. Similarly,<br />

George Younger & Co. of Alloa (closed 1960 and<br />

not to be confused with William Younger & Co.<br />

of Edinburgh) was also known to have produced<br />

a lager during the latter quarter of its illustrious<br />

215-year existence.<br />

Around 1900, there may have been slightly more<br />

than one hundred essentially small lager producers<br />

in the UK but this was set to wane and wax<br />

dramatically in the century and more that followed.<br />

Notwithstanding this, amongst the various turnof-the-century<br />

London lager outlets, one that<br />

survived the aftermath of The Great War was a<br />

famous delicatessen called Appenradts. At the top<br />

of Haymarket, across the road from the part-music<br />

hall that was the London Pavilion – where, apart<br />

from Spatenbräu, a dunkel Löwenbräu was served<br />

– Appenradts thrived in the early years of the 20th<br />

century and offered a splendid continental lager<br />

amongst other delicacies. After being taken over<br />

by an English firm, things were never quite the<br />

same there in the inter-war years.<br />

wagons, branded ‘Graham’s Golden Lager’, from<br />

Scotland to both Burton, for bottling for the home<br />

market, and to various victuallers, such as C G<br />

Hibbert, at Southampton Docks who bottled the<br />

premium liquid refreshment in bonded stores for<br />

loading onto ocean-going Cunard liners there.<br />

Allsopp’s also contributed its own products to this<br />

considerable luxury trade which was perpetuated<br />

from Burton up until the 1960s.<br />

At Kells, Co. Meath, Eire, the Regal Lager Brewery<br />

had been founded in 1937. A private company, it<br />

was registered in 1947 but closed just seven years<br />

later.<br />

Then, in 1956, when brewing ceased at the G H<br />

Lett & Co. Ltd., Millpark Brewery, Enniscorthy,<br />

Co. Wexford, Eire, almost the reverse to all the<br />

foregoing happened. The Pelforth Brewery in Lille,<br />

France, acquired the rights to continue to brew<br />

Lett’s Ales, previously crafted at the only Irish<br />

brewery to have adopted the (specialist pale ale)<br />

Burton Union system!<br />

In contrast, Barclay, Perkins & Co. Ltd.,<br />

Southwark, produced a ‘London Lager’<br />

throughout most of the 20th Century (from 1922)<br />

and, latterly, in both light and dark versions (in<br />

common with Allsopp’s) mainly for export, with<br />

bottles still being hand-labelled until its 1955<br />

takeover by Courage & Co. Ltd., through to the<br />

1980s.<br />

Paul Dabrowski<br />

with acknowledgements to: CAMRA, 1983 & 1984<br />

Good Beer Guides; Peter Haydon, Beer & Britannia;<br />

Where Have All the Breweries Gone?, Norman Barber,<br />

Brewery History Society<br />

CAMAL (The Campaign for Authentic Lager) may be of<br />

interest. Please visit www.camal.org.uk for more details.<br />

Next time Paul brings the story up to date with the<br />

emergence of micro-breweries and artisinal, ‘craft’ lager.<br />

During the wartime interregnum of that century,<br />

anti-German sentiment was predominantly<br />

assuaged by the promotion of Danish-brewed<br />

Tuborg lager, seemingly the only foreign brew to be<br />

advertised in the UK. But, six years after Allsopp’s<br />

Lager had been transferred from Burton to Alloa,<br />

Arroll’s developed ‘Graham’s Golden Lager’ in<br />

1927 from which Sköl was ultimately derived in<br />

the 1950s. Bulk beer was despatched in rail tank<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


Join CAMRA… then what?<br />

So you’re now a CAMRA member – a member<br />

of the largest and most successful single-issue<br />

consumer group in the country. Welcome!<br />

• Around 40 new members joined CAMRA<br />

at this year’s Reading Beer and Cider<br />

Festival.<br />

• Since the start of this year almost 80<br />

people have joined the Reading & Mid<br />

Berkshire branch of CAMRA.<br />

Fewer than 5% of CAMRA members are<br />

actively involved in the campaign, so please do<br />

your bit! Remember, every little helps.<br />

Phil Gill<br />

Adapted with permission from an original article<br />

by Lyn Sharpe of Potteries Branch. Lyn is CAMRA<br />

Campaigner of the Year 2017.<br />

By now you will have received your pack<br />

containing your membership card and<br />

Wetherspoon vouchers. Now it’s time to think<br />

on, not just about the financial benefits to you<br />

but what you can do to help the campaign.<br />

Here are just a few examples.<br />

• Remain a member and move to direct debit<br />

if you’re not already on it. Subscription<br />

income is vital to the success of the<br />

campaign.<br />

• Promote real ale. CAMRA has over<br />

188,000 members who, by talking<br />

enthusiastically to friends, family and<br />

colleagues, can encourage them to discover<br />

the delights of real ale, cider and perry.<br />

• Recruit a new member. The larger our<br />

membership, the more “clout” we have,<br />

so let’s try to get to 190,000 and beyond.<br />

• Score the beer you drink using CAMRA’s<br />

website WhatPub (whatpub.com). Your<br />

data makes the Good Beer Guide better<br />

and helps decide our Pub of the Year<br />

award.<br />

• Update the survey details for your local on<br />

WhatPub – having accurate and up to date<br />

information helps to better promote pubs.<br />

• Attend a meeting or a social. We’re a<br />

friendly bunch – see page 3 for what’s<br />

going on, and remember you can always<br />

join us for a beer somewhere on the First<br />

Thursday of the Month.<br />

• Volunteer for the Reading Beer and Cider<br />

Festival next year, or another local festival<br />

like Ascot. It’s fun and addictive!<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong><br />


Join up, join in,<br />

join the campaign<br />

From<br />

as little as<br />

£25 *<br />

a year. That’s less<br />

than a pint a<br />

month!<br />

Discover<br />

why we joined.<br />

camra.org.uk/<br />

members<br />

Join us, and together we can protect the traditions of great<br />

British pubs and everything that goes with them.<br />

Become part of the CAMRA community today – enjoy<br />

discounted entry to beer festivals and exclusive member<br />

offers. Learn about brewing and beer and join like-minded<br />

people supporting our campaigns to save pubs, clubs,<br />

your pint and more.<br />

Join the campaign today at<br />

www.camra.org.uk/joinup<br />

*Price for paying by Direct Debit and correct at April 2017. Concessionary rates available.<br />

Please visit camra.org.uk/membership-rates<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

Day<br />

Session<br />

12-5<br />

Live Music & Street Food, including Bavarian bratwurst<br />

Saturday 23rd September 2017<br />

per session and include a free pint & a stein<br />

(both sessions can be purchased if required)<br />

£10<br />

For more info and to book call<br />

Evening<br />

Session<br />

6-11<br />

or book online at WBBREW.COM<br />

Mine’s A <strong>Pint</strong>

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