Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Beer with me

Ton Overmars once more has shelves overflowing with St. Bernardus Abt. Until I get there. Then there's a just a gap.

I've a supply of Abt, is what I'm trying to say. I'm happy. Happy as a pig in the woods. But that's irrelevant. There's something else I want to talk with you about. Something serious.

Why did I illustrate my last post with a Charrington's label? I wasn't being random. For once. There was a reason. There's one of my minibooks in it for a correct reply.


Gary Gillman said...

Did Charrington - or Bass Charrington if the two had merged by then - buy the residue of the pub estate in 1968?

I love that word "casky"! Never heard that in 35 years of reading and talking about beer. It's not only handwriting that changes over decades but the very language, as e.g., who would call beer mucilaginous today, or ropy, or empyreumatic?

I think casky means too redolent of fresh wood. The (wooden)cask was probably recently made and not seasoned enough to take the beer. And true it is that a fresh wood taste is inimical to true beer flavour. In my opinion. But also I've read for years that English brewers didn't want oak flavour in their beer.


John Clarke said...

I believe that the Toby Jug emblem was used by Hoare & Co, a company bought by Charringtons. And didn't Hoare & Co buy some of the City of London pubs or some other of their business interests?

Gary Gillman said...

John may well be right about this. I'd just like to interpolate a comment about Toby (the beer). In the 1980's, Toby ale was licensed to a Canadian brewer (Molson's, I think). We got a bottled and draft version. Although quite remote from a cask beer, I always liked Charrington Toby, and fondly remember the Toby jug as its emblem on bottle labels and beer fonts. Keg beer was never the apotheosis but Toby ale brings back fond memories of iced, fruity/grainy pints before, say The Who at Exhibition Stadium in 1982.


Ron Pattinson said...

Gary, I guess they mean the smell of a stale cask by "casky". One that needs stripping or just plain burning.

I have found one source that claims some of the early Porter brewers deliberately used fresh oak to get a woody character into their beer. Now where was that?

John, that's it exactly. Hoare is the connection. Which book do you want?

Oblivious said...

But Ron I thought Oak was seasoned for a few years and micro flora have a big role in flavor development of the wood along with toasting?

John Clarke said...

Oh - "Mild" please!

This is great - I never win anything!

Ron Pattinson said...


send me an email with your postal address and a shiny copy of Mild! will on its way to you in a jiffy.