I was drowning in keg… (and loving it)

During my recent trip to London, if you follow me on Twitter or Facebook you will no doubt have seen my many messages about the beer I was drinking at the time. Or as one friend kindly put it “Stop filling my bloody timeline up with pictures of bloody beer!” (Edited, “polite” version…)

There was a reason for this albeit a personal one, I wanted to try to keep track of what I’d drunk and where, over a rather hectic pub crawl.

Anyway here’s that list give or take a few that I forgot about or can’t now find.

Quite a decent list but nothing over the top, lots of hops evident of course as is my preference especially on warm spring days. What surprised me when looking back though was the dominance of keg beers amongst my selections. I hadn’t set out to purposely target these beers, each choice was made as a spur of the moment decision based upon what was presented to me on each bar top.

Oddly though my two favourite beers of the three days were from different ends of the spectrum in terms of style, strength and serving method. Shoreditch Sunshine as found at the Southampton Arms was light quaffable session beer, fresh, fruity and extremely hoppy too. I went back for another which is odd for me on a beer pilgrimage, but it was just that good.

At the other end was the Mikkeller and Three Floyds collaboration, “BooGoop” barley wine. A rich and resinous sipper, full flavoured with bags of syrupy citrus fruits, a warming mouthfeel and dry bitter hop finish to boot.

One of those beers that you could just sit swirling around the mouth allowing the taste buds to pick out more and more flavours, if only I had the time..

As you can see though, I liked it, I liked it long time.

Reminiscing over though and back to the question, why was my shopping list dominated largely by beers served via keg lines, was it simply lack of choice? No, too much on offer for that surely??

I think the answer though, does lie in the above question albeit in reverse. The type of beer I chose is the sort of beer that I actively seek out in bottled form, rarities, stronger imports, big fat juicy American IPA’s and the like. Seeing them being served fresh on the bars is just too much of a draw for me, I get that Willie Wonka kid in a sweet shop grin on my chops and am sucked into the pure indulgence of it all.

Conversely, after only a couple of days though, I have to confess to finding myself soon longing for a normal pint, a quaffer, something equally tasty and refreshing to sup and sup again without fear of being pickled in my own alcoholic juices. This I found in a pint of Summer Wine Breweries Rouge Hop at the Euston Tap, the place where all London beer tours should start and end, it was my last taste of London and was beautiful..

So what is the point I’m so long windedly trying to make I hear you groan?

It’s this, I want more keg, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it many times again, not just imported keg but good, solid British keg of all strengths and styles too to sit in harmony with it’s foreign bedfellows. I don’t want it to replace real ale dispensed from the cask, I want it to exist everywhere in harmony, giving punters across the UK a real choice of what they want to drink and how it is served to them at that moment when stood in front of the polished bar top.

I drowned in keg in London because I never see it locally or anywhere else for that matter, unless I travel to other cities specifically to get it.

When I get there I enjoy it immensely, but must miss countless other lovely local beers in the process as I’m panic buying it like stamps, petrol or bread on New Years Eve, knowing that once I leave there’s no more to be had back home…

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13 thoughts on “I was drowning in keg… (and loving it)

  1. I have to say I do this whenever I’m in the smoke too. I’m always drawn to the left of the bar in Craft. This is despite the fact that we’re not that bad off in Newcastle – certainly now that the Brewdog circus has rolled into Toon, but we’ve been well served by the @Bacchus48, @TheFreeTradeInn and events like the sausage fest @brandlingvilla thus far too.

    • It’s hard to resist their gravitational pull 😉

      You’re lucky up there to have a great selection of bars/pubs and now Brewdog too, can’t wait to come up and see you guys again. Brewdog Manchester opening in a few weeks, so I suspect a mahoosive piss up is on the cards…

    • Cheers, I reckon we should do a Bruce Lee style ceremony to allow access to our fine order “the way of the keg”, picking up said heated keg with bare wrists should do it… 😉

  2. Really enjoyed reading this post.

    When I go to London I mainly go for obscure imported keg beers because they just don’t exist where I live. I love cask but most of the cask ales I have the option of drinking in a pub in London I’ll most likely stumble across at a beer festival at some point.

    • Thanks Nate, glad to hear it and thanks for the comment. Similar picture for me here too although getting better s l o w l y…

      I love both but love to find the “SHINY” ones when can, here’s hoping that is more regular eh

      • Yes, we’re starting to get more here too (Norwich). A few places have Meantime beers on keg, we’ve recently got Brooklyn Lager (AT ONLY £3.80 A PINT!!!), Black Isle Porter and a new place opened with Anchor Steam, Kwak, Jever & Veltins.

        Let’s not forget The Belgian Monk (http://www.thebelgianmonk.com) which has 12 Belgian drafts and about 100 bottles!

        I suppose it’s not all bad…

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