just a few words about two recent nights in excellent pubs.
The first saw me and Tash meet up in the Bath Hotel. Fiona was there as were a few regulars we know including Scott who Tash talked to at length about her work. She had started on a half of the Brooklyn Hammarby Syndrome, an 8.0% keg beer with spruce fronds and, I dunno, bog myrtle from Brooklyn Brewery, on offer at £2.10 a half. I was on Blackjack First Deal, a darker but hoppy bitter with nags of flavour.
Tash had another half and I caught up, buying me a pint and her a half of old favourite Thornbridge Halcyon. This was a revelation, packed full of citrus fruit bitter-sweetness and heady alcohol. No matter what you might say about Thornbridge, Halcyon remains one of their best beers.
Off next to Anchorage for some rather more expensive beers. I had a half of the Oersor Sargeant Pepper Saison, a 7.1% delight, and Tash a half of the 6.0% Flanders Red sour from Burning Sky, which was £3.50 or more a half. Was this value for money? Well, comparatively, not at all. Were these the best beers of the night? Comparatively, equal. The peppered saison was a wonderfully refreshing ale and the sour was, incredibly soft on the tongue. Lovely.
We finished in the Devonshire Cat, somewhere we haven't been for a while. To my delight they had Griffin'd Ale on cask. The barman suggested this was better than on keg, but gave us a sample for contrasting purposes. The keg tasted different, but not better. In fact, the cask may have edged it. We finished on the last bottle of Grozet from Williams Bros, a delightful Gooseberry ale, and two halves of something saison ish in style. A brilliant visit.
The next night saw me wander up to the Wellington. Only having about £1.80 I had a half - of Little Ale Cart High and Dry, which was excellent. I supped this in the beer garden with three young blokes who had supped a few but where certainly enjoying their evening drinking.
Last stop was Shakespeares, for a pint of Blackjack Topaz Gold. Once again packed with flavour, the beer was a lovely if heavy starter. I finished on halves of Totally Brewed 4 Hops of the Apocalypse, Kernel Citra on keg and also on keg, Beavertown Power of the Voodoo, Triple IPA.
The totally brewed was OK but slightly underwhelming, whilst the Kernel Citra was impeccable, very dry and hoppy but also cloudy and refreshing. At 10% and £7.50 or so a pint, the Beavertown was a sledgehammer of a beer, but one well worth savouring.
So, 5 completely different pubs and bars tried with wildly different styles and flavours of ales. Another example of Sheffield being a fantastic place to sup!