Sunday, 17 August 2014

Cape Town Bound

Anyone that knows me well enough (or stalks me on twitter) will know that between October 2013 and May this year Lucille had a TV job in Cape Town, this was a great opportunity for her and i fully supported her decision to do the job.

Anyone that actually knows me knows that i did not enjoy the experience in the slightest and I know that Lucille struggled with it at times too. Being apart from your spouse for that length of time puts a strain on your marriage and your sanity! I'm quite lucky in that i have very good friends that i know i can count on to help keep me sane and the dinner invites and couple of pints in the local (as crap as it is) really did help keep me going.

So Lucille is doing the job again this year and we decided because being away from your husband/wife/significant other/better half is utterly shit that i would go with Cape Town....for seven months...So after 6 years working for Mike and Rich, my resignation as Operations Manager of Utobeer was accepted on Friday and I leave on October 10th.

*Lets that hang there for a bit*

It was a case of do I take a sabbatical or resign and my post will need to be filled for 7 months and if the replacement does well then it's only fair that they get given the opportunity to continue with it. I may be back at Utobeer in some other capacity when I get back and i may not be back at all, it really is exciting times!

My family, friends, colleagues have reacted positively although one brewer said on twitter 'Hang on, who's going to order beer off me? *panics*' Well, there are other people within Utobeer who can do this and so i doubt you'll even notice the difference IN FACT it'll probably be better for my absence, after all i was just making it up as i went along!

What will i be doing? Writing a book, I hope and exploring another exciting and burgeoning beer scene in another part of the world. Cape Town has some terrific breweries and bars and i'm looking forward to a bit of a change in pace too.

They say everyone has at least one book in them...let's see if they are right...

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Pop Star Brewers, You Say

Just read Boak & Baileys friday post about this and the response from an anonymous brewer. I have to say I agree with almost all of what both parties say. 

I am becoming very bored with the growing amount of back-slapping and brewer idolatry that's becoming so prevalent nowadays but at the same time i am very interested in a lot of the stories that the brewers have about their past and why they started out etc...

Twitter, Facebook, beer blogs, video blogs, etc...all play their part in my relapse into beery ambivalence as i struggle to give a shit about any of it.

I DO see the point though, small brewers need these events to get sales and interest in their beers indeed we do them at Tap East and The Rake. Tap takeovers and meet the brewer events are important for those reasons. Faceless corporations have their enormous marketing budgets to garner interest and lie about being craft, small brewers do not have that luxury and if they did they'd only be accused of selling out. Isn't that the end game for a lot of them though? selling out? Surely they want to create a massive brand that a regional or global drinks company will buy in 10-20 years time making them very rich happy people? By all means disagree with me but i can see it happening all over the place. 

What are the 'shareholders' going to say when the boys at Brewdog decide that they want to sell out to a bigger company? Who knows? there will probably be new, cooler breweries out there anyway that they can go and editorially masturbate over, there usually are and that's what makes me want to gouge my own eyes out. 

•Most brewers i know are remarkably generous and nice people, but as a point was made, they are people, they have responsibilities outside brewing, families to support and mortgages to pay etc... so of course if someone makes an offer too good to refuse they're going to take it and they'll probably end up after dinner speaking or writing for a living anyway.

For my part, i'm going to continue saying well done to people that make good beer by ordering it (for the time being) and also by looking outwards from within and being safe in the knowledge that it's only beer. People in certain parts of the world are being massacred by the hundred whilst other people  sit around circle jerking about what beers they want to drink and what brewers they must have sex with this week.

Also, until one fanboy wrote about John Kimmich, I didn't have the first foggiest fucking clue who he was, or care for that matter.

As you were.

I felt the need to qualify this as some brewers i've seen online are total superficial, cynical assholes.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Greene King get National Distribution of Goose Island

This troubles me.

I can't fucking stand Greene King! Bunch of band wagon jumping numpties who needed a 'craft' brand to give them some credibility.

I doubt very much it will be left at that, I predict that it will be a matter of years before they are brewing it under license at Bury St Edmunds and making as much of an arse out of a craft brand that Sheps did with Sam Adams.

For the record, i don't care if you like the so-called craft brand from GK, i don't so spare the rest of us would you.

Rant over. As you were!

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Beery Question for the Day

Here's a question I don't believe has ever been asked...

What's your post-coital beer of choice? Do you plan the beer you're going to have? have you crafted beer into coitus? (sorry i'm watching a Big Bang Theory marathon!)

007 clearly has a thing for shitty lager, as seen below, you must have better choices than that!

Come on people, sharing is caring! ;-) 

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Good News

Just a quick update folks. Especially at this time of night. Glenn has been found, alive and well. Wants a bit of privacy is all.

So, a happy ending. Thanks for caring and sharing, folks, good to know so many people are willing to  give a shit.


Thursday, 1 May 2014


Hi everybody,

Many of you will know Glenn Payne, he's a member of the Guild of Beer Writers and knows more people in the beer & food industries than most of us meet people in a lifetime.

No-one has heard from or seen Glenn since he left The Rake on Sunday night. If you HAVE seen or heard from him please call the Utobeer office and let us know where : 020 7378 9461 - ask for me - Glyn. 

Glenn - should you happen to read this, please get in contact!

Monday, 31 March 2014

EBBC - European Beer Bollocks Conference

So I saw a tweet from Pete this evening that led me to actually read an email i'd got insisting that I went to the European beer bloggers conference in Dublin. An email i'd totally ignored until this evening.

Firstly and I'll say this right of the bat, i had, and have no intention of going to another beer bloggers conference. There's just other stuff i'd rather go to and as far as i can tell, beer blogging has died a slow, messy and tired death(he says ironically posting for the first time in months...)

Now i'm sorry but there more I work in the business, the less time i really want to spend drinking in my spare time, it's a fact folks, after a while you get bored, well i do. Fucking bored.

Anyway, back to the matter in hand. one of the 'Pulls' for this one is the visit to the great Guinness brewery, now, sorry but Guinness sucks ass, it's a shit, tasteless beer brewed by a spirits company, I drink it when there is literally nothing else on the bar to drink(including gin). 

The main reason for me not going is of course that i don't really consider myself to be a blogger anymore, after all this is the first post since 20th December last year so more than 3 months ago, quoting and changing one of the great film quotes of the nineties...

"All the great themes have been used up. Turned into theme parks. So I don't really find it exactly cheerful to be living in the middle of a totally, like, exhausted writing genre where's there's nothing original to look forward to and no one to look up to"

Now, granted this may sound a bit teenage, after all it was the nineties when Pump up the Volume came out but it resonates quite easily with the state of the beer writing community(in my opinion) simply because i'm not seeing anything new, and the people that try and do something new just look like they're trying too hard for a story, or a by-line and the people that aren't trying something new just seem like they're stagnating. How can the end of the email possibly make any sense when only 35 people have actually signed up? "The European Beer Bloggers Conference is our highest rated conference out of the six we run each year and you as alumni know it is an awesome time with fun people for very little money. To be honest, if this is not what you want - meals, beer, content, and Irish culture all for little to no money - I am not sure what you are looking for. :)

Highest rated? really? Couldn't give a shit but that may well be because i've been artistically constipated for the lasted 18 months! Have fun with that image!