am sure regular readers will know that I don't go out that often around Christmas time, usually entirely based on outrageously drunk and crucially, rude drinkers, feeling that the time of year gives them the right to behave in any way or say anything they damn like. Obviously this revulsion has not lessened, but have been more aware of getting a seat since have got my stick, and am still getting tired walking, so pre Christmas supping has been further reduced. Luckily this period of comparative sobriety should mean some details of beers drunk and where are actually correct.
Two weeks ago I went out for the team Christmas meal to Las Iguanas. It was great to see everybody for the first time in weeks, and I had a couple of bottles of Alhambra Reserva with my meal. I had also arranged to meet Meathouse in the Bath Hotel afterwards. Alas he cancelled as I was heading up, but I decided to pop in for one anyway. I got a pint of the Thornbridge and Magic Rock collab which may have been called Exaltation, and which was a 5.5% alt style beer. I somehow managed to get the last seat in th pub, but it was fearsomely busy so I decided to head off for pastures near.
The Three Tuns came next and mercifully there was a seat. There was a Blue Bee American 5 Hop on and I had most of a pint of that, and since it was the end of the barrel did so for free. Some of the world's loudest humans were in, but not too near, but I still opted only to stay for one, passing on my Yule best wishes on leaving.
My final stop was in Bar Stewards and they had the Verdant I played bass on that tune double dry hopped on keg, so all other beers were not in contention, despite its somewhat keen price. As I had expected, this was hoppier but just as well rounded as the none DDH version and tasted fantastic. A great opportunity to catch up with Charlie, and to sup great beer, as the bar came to closing time.
My final escapade came on the Tuesday with my good friend Mr G. Knowing how paralysingly crap the 52a had become for Christmas I gave myself a while to get there but was still 15 minutes late. I did however walk quite fast with my stick to find Mr G waiting for me outside Shakespeares. Its almost like he knew about my poor financial status...
On entering he looked for lower strength cask, since he was driving and I spotted a Cloudwater on keg. Being as it was on "the stout line" I asked Chris to confirm what it was and to my delight it was their collaboration DIPA with Dry and Bitter called Mobile Speaker. I'll have a pint of that please I stated, and was advised that it was £8.10 a pint. I thought about mentioning to Mr G that it was Christmas, and then did, but he had already agreed. We repaired with our drinks to the clock room, initially sitting at the knee breaker table before escaping to our usual spot, the long table across the back.
I have known Mr G for over ten years and its always good to catch up with him and to find out how, of late, his new job is going. He is aware that I only have a short period where I can buy us both drinks and didn't even quibble when I finished my first pint and asked for another. I fully intend taking him out at the beginning of the month in return.
The conversation ebbed and flowed naturally and he had another half, before moving onto soft drinks. On seeing my get to half of the second pint he asked if I wanted another half. I answered honestly. I wanted a third and final pint. One of the bar staff said, on discovering it was me, that I was unstoppable. "Apart from his stroke" Mr G quipped. I laughed my head off. Its the kind of joke that only good friends can have.
One of the best things about this night was that it involved just one pub, two friends and some frankly fabulous beer. It was undoubtedly the lull before the storm, but was quiet on that night, and all the better for it. In comparison to other near Christmas nights out, even at such an excellent pub, this was probably the best. Your very good health Mr G.
One thing that I intend to do if I manage ti cut down is still go to the best pubs in Sheffield, but perhaps just stick to one. Am looking forward to putting this plan into action in the doom laden weekdays of January ahead. Remember, your boozers need you.