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Thursday, 30 September 2010

Drinking on a Wet Wednesday

Took a bus trip to Keynsham and met Pete in the Old Bank. Found a very nice real ale from Wickwar Brewery, Coppers 3.5%. A session beer but with bags of flavour and depth and at only £1.80 per pint a real winner. Because it was raining quite heavily we stayed for a second pint of Coopers then, when the rain eased off a bit,  made our way to The Ship Inn. Stopping at Neal's Fine Food shop for a steak and kidney pie. This will be consumed for Friday's lunch. At the Ship we had a pint of Morrells Varsity 4%. This was followed by a Jennings Cumberland 4%. A beer with a distinctive taste. A grand afternoon out. Nice tasty ale but we didn't have our traditional bowl of chips. I really know why but it was Pete's turn to buy them. Or it could be that the time travel/warp has kicked in yet again and took us to a parallel universe where the only difference is that they don't have chips or maybe they don't have potatoes or frying oil. It would be a creepy place without chips. How would it be possible to have a bowl of chips tradition without chips. I don't know and it is making my teeth itch just thinking about it.

Tomorrow is brew day. I have decided on a mild style beer which should be ready for Xmas. It should turn out at about 3.4% ABV and make a bit of a change from the pale ales and bitters I have been brewing lately. Later today I will boil about 20 litres of water and leave to cool overnight. Tomorrow I will try and not make mistakes like I did last Friday. Though at my age and level of intelligence that is a big ask. Still like a British Bulldog I will keep calm and carry on. Oh! By the way. DON'T SPILL BEER.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Brew Day +1

I pitched the yeast for the new brew (to be named later) and it is bubbling away nicely with an original gravity of 1.030. It should be 1.040 but no matter it will probably come out at about 3.5% ABV which plenty strong enough. I will leave this brew until next Friday and then check the OG again.

The dried malt finally turned up from the Thrifty Shopper. Definitely the fault of the Royal Mail so I will continue with the Thrifty Shopper.

On a different note and for those of you who are interested below is a map of the walk we completed from County Gate to Porlock with some interesting statistics, with thanks to Richard.

Friday, 24 September 2010

Friday Is Brew Day

Completed another brew though not without some problems. Some caused by me and avoidable. the main one being that the Thrifty Shopper failed to deliver the dry malt which they promised for yesterday. This one not being my fault. Luckily I changed the brew I was going to make to another one that required less dry malt. What can I say. Age is one contributing factor another is the fact that I can sometimes be stupid. I boiled 23 litres of water yesterday and left overnight to cool. This morning I dissolved 2120 grams of dry malt in 10 litres of water at 40C. Poured this into the boiler and topped up with another 13 litres of warm water. I then put 290 grams of Crystal Malt in a filter bag and put that in the boiler. I took this bag out when the wort came to the boil. I took my eye of the boiler for a minute and had the classic over boil as the dry malt tends to foam up quite a bit when it is boiled. This was avoidable by the simple method of leaving the lid off the boiler. However, I only partially covered the boiler with the lid but it was enough. Luckily I caught it before it could do too much damage but it did make a bit of a mess. I correctly added 310 grams of white sugar at the 45 minute mark. The other stupid thing I did was to add the second batch of hops and the Irish moss at the same time as the sugar instead of the last ten minutes of the boil. I don't know how this will effect the end product but time will tell. At the end of the 90 minute boil I switched the boiler off and allowed the hops and the rest of the dross to settle to the bottom. Then I sterilised the fermenting vessel and ran some of the cooled water into that followed by the wort from the boiler. It was then a simple matter to top to the 23 litre mark with the remaining cooled water. Screwed the lid on and will leave until the temperature of wort drops to about 26C before placing in the heated cupboard and pitching the yeast.

To bring my stocks back to a normal level I will have to have another brew day next Friday. I will decide which beer to brew over the weekend and order the necessary supplies from the Thrifty Shopper. Although I will have to have a plan B just in case they let me down again. If their website shows any of the ingredients that I want are out of stock I will order from another source. Though I hope they can get their act together as I have had great service and good value for money from them in the past.

Thursday Night Is Curry Night

Another successful curry night at the Staple Hill Oak last night. Had the Prawn Malabar curry. Quite nice but the prawns were a bit chewy. This problem is usually encountered because the prawns end up being cooked twice. Once in the food factory and again in the microwave or pan when they are heated up before being served. Still never mind the curry sauce was lovely although the naan bread was a little on the flourery side and little bit cold. Anyway the beer was good. Tried a Loddon Bamboozle 4.8%. A light coloured pale ale with a nice hoppy flavour. Next was the Bath Ales Barnstormer  4.5% a dark beer verging almost on the stout side. Also shared a bottle of Hardy's Shiraz with Jim and Geoff. No real moans or rants from last night just a pleasant evening spent in pleasant company.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Thursday Is Upon Us Once Again

Well here it is, Thursday. Another curry night at the Staple Hill Oak, a Weatherspoons pub. Their beer festival starts next month. Looking forward to that.

Another Wednesday Day Out

After catching the bus to Broadmead I started to look for some blank printable DVDs. I was counting on Currys stocking them but Currys was not there. In its place was some sort of clothes shop. No matter, surely WH Smith would have them. They did but at twice the price I was expecting. Carried on looking but all in vain. So I carried on to the Farmers Market and bought my usual Pie Minister pie and carried on the the the Commercial Rooms where I met Pete and had a pint of Norman Conquest MM 5%. A dark beer very close to a porter, in my opinion but quaffable none the less. Always on the look out for new stamping grounds we ventured to the top of Whiteladies Road very close to the Downs. Wandered into the first pub we came across (or so we thought) the Kings Arms. Their board outside said real ale but on entering we saw three people tapping eager away at their laptops. Asked if they had any real ale as the small bar downstairs was only displaying the usual 'orrible stuff such as lager and smooth beer. The nice young barmaid said they had Otter or Bob. Ordered Bob and paid. The pretty barmaid said she would have to go upstairs to pour the beer and that she would bring it down to us. OK. No problem. However, 15 minutes later she returned to say she was having trouble with the barrel but would we prefer Otter instead. No said I and asked for my money back (£6). There was no problem there and I got a refund and an apology. The Kings Arms is not what I would call a pub. We won't be going there again I shouldn't think. So with 20 minutes taken out of our day out we persevered and quickly found the Port of Call. Now this is what I call a proper pub. Nice interesting decor and plenty of pictures etc on the wall. A good pub. Had a pint of Osprey 5%. Lovely beer obviously well kept and looked after but at £3.60 a pint a bit on the pricey side. However they did have another real ale at £2.50 a pint but we didn't notice that until after the Osprey was poured. We will probably have a return visit sometime. Onwards then to the Beaufort Arms. A very friendly pub, a cider house really but the London Pride 4.7% was very nice. A fairly basic pub mainly for locals who can be quite vocal but are really friendly. Not a place to take young children though because of the language. After a fond farewell from the locals we headed to the Jersey Lilly. The board outside boasted 6 real ales. However, going inside the only beers out of the six pumps, that didn't sport a notice saying 'sorry this beer is settling' was Abbot or Butcombe. We had a pint of Abbot 5%. Very enjoyable and once again was obviously being well looked after. Also had a portion of Goldilocks (not too big not too small) chips between the two of us. Lovely chips and at £1.80 not too much over priced.

Brew day tomorrow. Put on 23 litres of water onto boil. It is now cooling in the boiler and I will transfer it to a plastic bucket later this afternoon. Had a slight hiccup with the Thrifty Shopper. I ordered 2kg of light spray malt but they only sent me 1kg in two 500 gram bags. To be fair their web site did state that the malt I wanted was out of stock but they didn't answer my emails which was slightly annoying. However, I did get a phone call from them yesterday promising that the missing malt would be with me today. So far it hasn't turned up. I think they are trying really hard to satisfy all their customers but it could be that they have been overwhelmed with orders. I changed the beer I was going to brew to one that I have the ingredients for. Just in case the dry malt does not turn up in time. To catch up with my full quota I will have to have another brew day next Friday 1 Oct 10.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Brew day - Aborted

Due to circumstances beyond my control brew day has had to be postponed until next Friday. However, Jim's birthday treat was a triumph. Jim, Richard, Pete, Tony, John, Beryl, Barry, Duncan, Mary, another John, Geoff, Alannis and myself. We all met in Staple Hill Oak a Weatherspoons pub and had a couple of Funky Monkey 4%  from Milk Street Brewery. Then over the road to the Supreme House. A fairly small but friendly restaurant serving delicious Indian food. Had a couple of bottles of Bangla beer. Although brewed in the UK it has a nice distinctive taste. Jim paid the bill and it was back to the Staple Oak for a pint of Funky Monkey. Pete took Jim, Richard and myself home together with a bag of carrots and lettuce. Ta Pete!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Wednesday Day Out Again

Caught the bus to Bristol (which was on time. Amazing, a fluke or am I time travelling again to a period when things like regular buses that arrived and departed on time were the norm and quite unremarkable?). I walked through the Farmers Market in Corn Street and bought a Pieminister PM pie for Friday's lunch. A little pricey at £3.00 but truly delicious. Then I met Pete in the Commercial Rooms and bought a pint of Vale Ale 4.3%. The service in the Commercial Rooms on a lunchtime leaves a lot to be desired. It is not uncommon to wait for 15-20 minutes to be served. The staff are rushing around but have little idea of who is next in line. So then tend to serve those who claim to be next in line. This can be very frustrating and I have seen people leave because they have been waiting too long and see people who come in after them getting served first. Perhaps a simple ticket system, like that used in supermarkets, would stop queue jumping and give staff a much better idea of whom to serve next. Rant over back to the beer. Unfortunately the Vale Ale was a little cloudy. It tasted fine. However, it put me off so Pete and I travelled on foot to the Bank. A real ale pub but most of their real ale was off I think they were awaiting a delivery. The Bank is nice proper pub, service is good and beer good. We had a pint of Severn Vale Session 3.4%. Still no active web site from this brewery yet just a page describing the ale they brew. Eager to try a beer that I have not drunk before we repaired to the White Lion on the centre. We started with a Wickwar Bankers Draft 4.0%. A beer I enjoyed. Next we ordered a Cotswold Way 4.2% again from the Wickwar Brewery we felt that tradition had to be followed and share a bowl of chips. However, chips were not on the menu so we ordered a ham and cheese sandwich. Pete had cheddar and I had stilton. I thought that these open sandwiches were a bit pricey at £3.95 each. However, the amount of cheese and ham was very generous between two very large and thick slices of delicious wholemeal bread.  They came with a ramekin of branston style chutney and a large pickled onion. Much more than just a snack. Delicious as these sandwiches were I would have preferred a bowl of chips. Next time I think that perhaps we would share one sandwich instead of scoffing one each. A very enjoyable day out as it always is. Tonight is Jim's birthday treat. More on that tomorrow.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Brew Day Is Looming

The next brew day will be Friday 17 Sep 10. I know, you may be thinking that this man drinks a lot. However, the beer festival at the end of July depleted my stocks a little even though I brewed an extra barrel. The next brew will be called Autumn Glory though it probably won't get drunk until after Christmas. Hopefully it will be a best bitter full of autumn flavours and aromas. I am aiming for an ABV of about 4.5% although I won't be too disappointed if it comes in lower than that. I have all the ingredients except for about 2kg of light spray malt and yeast which I will order on Wednesday from the Thrifty Shopper. I shall follow the same procedure as last time but with a check list to make sure there are no hiccups.

Day Action
Wednesday Order necessary ingredients etc from Thrifty Shopper
Thursday Boil 20 litres of water and leave to cool.
Friday Dissolve light spray malt in 10 litres of warm (40C) water

Transfer water into boiler and top up to 20 litres and bring to boil

Add hops at start of boil

Continue boiling for 80 minutes

Add additional hops and Irish moss for last 10 minutes of boil

Continue boiling for 10 minutes

Turn off boiler

Leave boiler for 30-40 minutes for dross to settle

Transfer 15 litres of cooled water to fermentation vessel

Run off wort from boiler into fermentation vessel

Top up fermentation vessel to 23 litres with cooled water

Seal and leave fermentation vessel to cool

When wort is below 30C check original gravity and pitch yeast

Place fermentation vessel in cupboard and leave at 22C for 7-10 days

I'm still looking for a practical and cheap way to rapidly cool the wort. Some sort of immersion coil made from copper tubing seems to be the way to go. Or I could get a large water proof container, fill with cold water and place the fermentation vessel in that. If anyone has any ideas or thoughts on this subject please leave in comment box. Ta!

Friday, 10 September 2010

Thursday Night is Curry Night

Although I was looking forward to my curry night I couldn't make it in the end. Whether or not this anything to do with time travel I have no idea but I wouldn't be surprised! There is always next week as they say. Why anyone would say that I have absolutely no idea either.

Thursday, 9 September 2010


Barrelled the latest brew, Scarecrow, this morning. Run a little of the wort off to test the final gravity (FG). It came out as 1.006. Put 75 grams of castor sugar straight into the barrel then syphoned of the wort from the FV into the barrel. Placed the barrel in the fermenting cupboard and will leave for 2 to 3 days to condition. After I took the FG reading I tasted the wort. The wort looked clear and smelt good but it did not have a pleasant taste at all. I am hoping that it is only a bit of residue soap or something in the glass or it could have been something in the hydrometer vessel. If the odd taste was due to the wort it would have probably been cloudy and would have smelt off. I will draw a  little of the wort off later on today and see what transpires.

Oh joy! The Scarecrow is fine. Tastes just as it should. Must have been a contaminated glass or something. Oh Joy!

Wednesday Day Out

Met Pete in the Berkley a Weatherspoons pub opposite the university at the top of Park Street. Weatherspoons are having a cider festival at the moment so there wasn't much in the way of real ales. Settled for a Butcombe 4%. Pete had Ruddles. Pete stayed with the Ruddles but I had a Pionair Leopard 5%. brewed by Cottage Brewery. This ale is not shown on their website maybe its a special for Weatherspoons. It is a dark beer with distinctive taste. Not unpleasant but I probably would not be drinking it again. On then to the Hope and Anchor for a pint of Cotleigh Tawny. A nice beer with good flavours despite its low 3.8% ABV. Also had a large bowl of chips. My advice is that unless you are extremely hungry and you fancy chips have the small bowl. On then to the Plume of Feathers and a pint of Arbor Ales and a pint of Brigstow. The Plume of Feathers features a few times in the Camra Bristol Branch publication Pints West No 87. Although it is available in printed form it does not seem to have been in an appearance on the website yet. A very pleasant friendly pub recently reopened. After that it was homeward bound on the bus. I can't believe it is Thursday yet again. Oh well! I will just have to be brave and go for a curry I suppose. I will try hard not to lose my notes this week. :)

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Lynton 3-6 September 2010

Friday: Richard picked me up at 10:00 and we had a very uneventful journey to the Channel View camp and caravan park near Lynton through some very pretty countryside. We arrived about 13:30, pitched our tents and joined John and Beryl at their mobile home. At this point Ken pitched up having parked his Vauxwagon camper van. After a very welcome cup of tea and piece of ginger cake John broke out some bottles of Marston’s Fever Pitch. A very nice hoppy, light and refreshing beer. The sun was shining and it was very warm so John’s supply of Fever Pitch was quickly exhausted. That was when Martin turned up with some cans of Bass. Bless you Martin. After putting the world to rights and talking a load of bullocks Jim arrived. Fortunately there was just one can of Bass left so Jim had that. With the beer running short it was decided to repair to Lynmouth and the Rising Sun. Here we drank Exmoor Ale. On a Friday the local workforce gathers at the Rising Sun, to celebrate the end of the working week and the start of the weekend. Although not an unusual practice it apparently involves the wall just outside the pub and someone falling over backwards. This was demonstrated very ably by a young local workman. See photo on the left. Whom I swear managed to save his beer and not spill a drop. Although there is such a thing as a false memory syndrome I know what I saw.
Fortunately the young lad was unhurt and literally bounced back up. A little later we travelled back to the camp site and into the adjoining Beggars Roost where we enjoyed some more Exmoor Ale and a really delicious Gammon Steak with chips and trimmings. A fairly early night for the others turned out to be a very busy and interesting one for me. When I got back to my tent I found that I had a message on my secret horsehair and cardboard radio. There was a very important mission that the group was to undertake and complete. There was no room for error. The mission was simply too important to contemplate any sort of failure. My mission was to lead the others on a yomp through the countryside, drink lots of beer and so save local pubs from closure. I eagerly set to work. This would require the most meticulous planning and spot on timing. I poured over my maps, drizzled a little over my notes and later rained over my compass. Even when the wind took on near hurricane speeds and my tent collapsed around my ears I barely noticed. I worked feverishly through the night. It was vital that the local pubs remain open. Sleep was not important. I could catch up with some by cat napping on the following morning’s yomp.

Saturday: After the near disaster of my tent collapsing and Richard and Jim wondering around my tent shaking their heads and tutting in a most professional manner. Jim hatched plan B which involved moving my tent to a more sheltered spot and hopefully preventing further collapse should the weather prove inclement throughout the rest of our stay. Richard seemed very happy with this. He had accused me on previous occasions of snoring and keeping him awake. A very unlikely occurrence in my opinion.  After re-pitching my tent and partaking of a hearty breakfast in the camp site cafe I gathered the chaps and chappess and explained our mission. They were all very keen and raring to go as I knew they would be. The group consisted of Ken, Richard, John, Beryl, Jim, Martin and me, Allan. Plus Martin's two dogs, Honey and Lizzy. We were a small group but what we lacked in numbers we made up in shear passion to save as many pubs as we could. We set off in Martin’s Shogun and headed for County Gate. This would be our headquarters and return point. Crossing the road we set off at a good pace towards Porlock Weir. The sign posts along the track were very confusing. Giving distances that we knew must be wrong and often contradicting the previous sign post. Anyway, after five, six, seven, eight, nine or ten miles at a steady yomp we arrived at the Ship Inn also known as the Bottom Ship Inn in Porlock Weir. The Top Ship Inn being in Porlock itself. As we arrived it began to rain so we went inside the Inn and enjoyed several pints of Exmoor Ale. Ever mindful of our mission it was vital that we caught the last bus from Porlock to County Gate. No one seemed to know the times of the last bus so I ran to Porlock and checked out the timetable. I ran back to the Ship Inn and rallied the troops. If we walked to Porlock while the rain was still quite light we would have time to save a couple of more pubs and still be able to catch the last bus. A vital element of the mission. Bravely leading the way we walked at a good pace to the Castle Hotel in Porlock. After a couple of pints of Doombar we again struck out. This time just a few hundred yards to the Royal Oak. Here we started on the Exmoor Ale but the barrel ran dry and the replacement was not quick right so we had to go on to Gem. It was then that a very peculiar event happened. Jim's full pint of Gem slid off the table and landed on the floor. Jim was mortified. Due to the carpet the glass was saved but the beer was lost forever. After the floor was cleaned up by a very helpful barmaid several theories were put forward as to why this unfortunate thing should happen. The Sir Isaac Newton theory was expounded. If he hadn't invented gravity then Jim's beer would not have been wasted. There were many other theories put forward. One involved poltergiests and dead parents. However, one absurd theory was voiced. Normally it would not find space in this blog but it is rather funny so I have included it. It goes like this. The table upon which the glass of Gem sat was on a slight slope due to an uneveness in the floor. The bottom of the beer glass was wet. This meant that there was very little friction to stop the glass moving. A passing motor vehicle or a person walking past the table depressed the floorboard a little. Thus allowing the glass of Gem to slide to the edge of the table and so onto the floor. See what I mean. Absurd but funny. I personally think that the Sir Isaac Newton theory is the only one that can explain this freak accident. The quicker gravity is un-invented the better and the less likely beer will be spilt.

The time to catch the bus and return to County Gate headquarters was upon us. Piling onto the top deck of the open top bus we were confronted with a sea of grey hair. We soon struck up a conversation with a nice couple and a common interest in motorbikes was found. Arriving at County Gate we climbed into the Shogun and Beryl drove us back to Lynmouth and the Rising Sun. Bless you Beryl! A few pints of Exmoor Ale and then we returned to the campsite and the Beggars Roost. An evening meal of Beef and Ale pie went down very well. I left the Beggars Roost early to allow the youngsters to let their hair down without me peering over their shoulders.  Lying down on the grass looking at the stars in the clear Devon air I soon located Sirius the Dog Star. This star is believed by the Dogons to be the home of all ancient knowledge. Although a primitive culture, it seems that visitors from Sirius contacted them eons ago with the very mysteries of the universe. The information that the Dogons have still remains intact after all these years, untouched and not influenced by outside cultures. Thinking about this it occurred to me that perhaps we should visit Sirius and put these myths to rest once and for. I then realised that it was quite possible to make this journey quickly and cheaply. Rockets would not be needed. I scratched my head why hadn’t the scientists discovered this years ago, it was patently obvious. I reached for my phone to spread the good news. No signal! Damn! It would have to wait until I returned to Bristol. I hit my pillow and was quickly transported into a dream world of ancient tribes, aliens and star journeys. Until about 2:00 when I was awoken by the high winds and pouring rain. Once again a night with very little sleep but the tent held. I had also forgotten how to get to Sirius. Oh well! perhaps a few more pints of Exmoor Ale would help to rekindle the memory.

Sunday: Another hearty breakfast in the camp site cafe set us up for the day followed by a quick walk into Lynton. It was raining quite heavy by the time we arrived so we retreated to a cafe for a cup of coffee. About 11:00 we decided that the rain had subsided enough to allow a short walk without getting too wet. We went up through the Valley of Rocks picked up the coastal path and strolled back into Lynton. Strangely it was beer time (this time travel business makes my head hurt) so we visited the Crown Hotel where we found that it was under new ownership. Tribute was the ale of choice along with Bass for John and Jim. The Tribute was absolutely cracking. The service here was superb. Although the pint glasses were not quite full our round of Tribute came with an extra small glass so that our glasses could be topped up as the head settled. Thank goodness for a landlord who serves a full pint without having to be asked for a ‘top-up’. I hope this practice continues and spreads throughout the land. On then to Lynmouth to the Rising Sun (yes the same one, again! Surely you could see that one coming) for more Exmore Ale. Then round the corner to Esplanade Fish Bar for our annual and now traditional fish and chips on the beach. We didn’t quite make the beach due to the weather but we sat on the wall opposite the Fish Bar and scoffed away. This place serves the best fish and chips for miles. Well worth a visit if you are in that part of the country. Back to the Rising Sun (I bet you are getting the hang of it now) for a few more beers. Returning to the camp site I decided to get a couple of hours shut eye before going to the Beggars Roost for one last time. However, I didn’t wake up until after 10:30 much too late for me. So I turned over and had a good nights kip trying to make up for two nights with very little sleep.

Monday: Got up quite early at 7:00 and packed up the tents and went to (no not the Rising Sun) the camp site cafe for yet another hearty breakfast. Settled our camping fees with Sally and set off for Bristol. A really good but very tiring weekend despite the weather. Looking forward to next year.

With thanks to the following:

Richard for giving me a lift and helping to sort out my tent.
Jim for coming up with plan B and helping with my tent.

John for supplying much needed beer at the right time
Martin for supplying much needed beer at the right time and showing us around the various walks and driving us around
Beryl for driving us to and from pubs on quite a few occassions
Sally for sorting out our camping pitches and being really nice
Ken for being there and helping me pitch my tent on Friday

Honey and Lizzy for being such good dogs and giving us such a laugh on the walks

history est perscribo per vir per calamus

Friday, 3 September 2010

Curry Night

Thursday night is indeed curry night. I lost my notes of last night's visit to Weatherspoons Staple Hill so having to rely on memory. Not such a good thing at my age. Started off with a pint of Bob and a further pint of Bob with my Beef Madras curry. The curry seemed really rather spicier than usual, however, it was very tasty. Finished with a pint of S'necker  or something like that 5.1%. A darkish beer with a nice hoppy aroma and taste. With a slight caramel finish. It must have been a local beer because the pump did not have a proper clip just an oval blackboard with the title and ABV written in chalk. So it was probably chosen by the manager and not part of Weatherspoons overall guest ales.

Pete gave me some more lettuce and half a ton of damson. Ta Pete! Not sure what do with the damsons just yet. Wine comes to mind, or jam or maybe even a chutney. If anyone has any ideas please put them on a postcard and send to the usual address. Sorry kids you have to be 16 or over to enter.

Awaiting Richard who will give me a lift to Lynton. Hoping to find a few new ales that I have not tried before. if not Exmoor Gold, Exmoor Stag, Exmoor Beast and a raft of other beers will be available. Hooray!

Thursday, 2 September 2010


Met Pete in the Commercial Rooms, Bristol yesterday for a pint of Steam Harvest 4.8% from RCH. I couldn't find Steam Harvest on their website but found a mention of it on the BeerToday website. A nice fairly bitter tasting beer. Barry turned up unexpectedly so we repaired to the Seven Stars. Barry had heard they had a few new ales just ready for tasting. Tried the Raw Moor 4.3%. I can't find a website for the Moor Brewery. It is a unfined slightly hazy beer but very tasty. A pint of 3G-Darwins 4.6%. A very nice hoppy ale. I can't find a link for this beer. If anyone can please send it to me or leave it as a comment. Ta! Finished with a Severn Vale Session 3.4%. No active website yet but they do list their beers.

Pete gave me some more of his garden produce which included a purple cauliflower! Not tried it yet but it look very colourful. He has promised me some more lettuce when we meet at Weatherspoons tonight. Ta Pete! Yes it is Thursday again. I must get my head around this time warp business. Off to Lynton with some of the usual suspects tomorrow until Monday.We will meet Martin and Sally who are old friends from Bristol who moved to Devon many years ago. They manage the Channel View camp site and we will be camping under the stars and hopefully not under the rain clouds. Richard has very kindly offered me a lift and we will meet the rest of the gang there. I will write a blog tomorrow, if I have time and unless I can borrow a computer my next blog after that will be next Tuesday. Hopefully it will be full of our daring exploits and some new real ales. I am looking forward to this trip. My first and last holiday since last September. Watch this space.

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