Thursday, 14 February 2013

The first tentative step

Well hello there dear reader. I say reader as I’m unsure if this humble little blog will reach the heady heights of plurals in regards to my readership and if it doesn't then I’d like to say thank you for the support Mum, and tell Kelly she’s a terrible wife for not reading this.

So I guess I should start at the start and define my intentions, despite the fact that I hardly know what my intentions are yet. Well my name is Chris, of that much I’m certain and I started this blog out of a passion for all things cask ale. My palate and I have been on quite a journey that started with humble beginnings 5 years ago when I took my first tentative sips of bitter as I strayed from the gassy grips of mass produced convenience alcohol and wondered blindly into the dizzying mazes of LocAles, Craft beers and Continental concoctions. My daunted taste buds were ill prepared for that voyage and I suppose this blog is my reaction to all that. I would anticipate not so much a structured, diarised account of my findings but instead the random scribbles of a man trying to make sense of the chaos he has staggered into.

What will I write as the blog progresses? Who knows? I guess that depends on how my readers react (look at me daring to talk of plurals! As I type my confidence already soars, dare I dream of a dozen readers?) As I stand before you now I find myself a licensee of a humble pub in Cardiff, The Goat Major: small but perfectly formed. It is a cask ale affair that offers an honest menu consisting of homemade pies and nothing else. My situation of course leads me to believe that snapshots of the Cardiff scene will feature in my writings but also I hope more than this. Last year saw me casting my eyes wider than the street I’m on and that saw me attending beer judging events in London, the wonderful awards dinner of the Guild of British Beer Writers and winning an award for the best cask Ale pub in SA Brains and this year has got off to a delightful start of being invited to a brewery to create my own beer. All ideal fodder for the blogger in me I’m sure.

But is there even room in this field for another aspiring beer writer to graze? Who knows? Maybe my dreams are the stuff of pipes. Maybe there is nothing new under the sun to write about and if there were maybe there are people out there far more qualified than me for the task but all I know is I have to try. After all, where would I be if I never tried? Still in Pontypridd probably. And I don’t want to be there. Those people scare me…


  1. Can't wait to read all about it, Beardface. You're off to a deliciously beery start. Keep up this level of writing, and you'll be in all the big mags in no time. Also looking forward to trying your new brew!

  2. Ah shucks... Thanks hun! I'm hoping they bottle a load up, if they do I'll keep you one!

  3. Consider your readership pluralised my friend! Love it, can't wait to read more. And tasing your brew will be quite the event!

  4. +1 to your readership! Good luck with the brew day - if there's one thing better than drinking great beer it's brewing great beer (and then drinking it!)

    Make sure you take lots of photographs and post about how well it went on your blog :)

  5. Add another reader to the list.

    Looking forward to reading and hopefully trying your beer.

  6. Good luck on your beautiful beer blogging journey :-))

  7. If you're anything like me, you'll start off carefully following a recipe, make one batch, think it's great, chalk it down as a natural skill, and go off in your own direction.

    That's what I did with brewing (and growing vegetables, which I haven't got quite right yet, and charcuterie, but that's a new venture so I'm still stumbling around like a myopic child that has fallen out of the ghost train).

    Thus far in a good few years of brewing, I've only had to throw one batch away (it stunk like Chernobyl's stinkier twin town), and had one batch grow mould in the bottles. The latter I still drank, got drunk, but wouldn't chalk it up as my greatest success in terms of taste.

    In short, as long as you keep things clean and take your time (impatience will create a disappointing beer quicker than anything), you should always end up with something drinkable. It might not be what you intended to make, but drinkable it will be. Some of my favourite brews are ones that happened by accident!

    Get to it!