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You'll all have been worried about whether my beer was up to snuff at our Jubilee party no doubt. It was. Perfect in fact and reminder that I should have confidence in my cellar abilities. A word too about my new local brewer Wilson Potter. Their beer named Tandle Hill was excellent at the brewery the other night when we presented the Beer of the Festival award for Oldham Beer Festival. It's what persuaded me to buy it and you know, as I expected, it was even better when served through a handpump and tight sparkler. In fairness though, I had the beer settling at cellar temperature, while when we visited WP, they were fighting against 28C hot weather. It was interesting too that some drinkers found the beer far too hoppy for their taste and went for the alternative, Empire Fastnet, a pale, golden beer that was a lot more malt forward. In the dash for hops, we mustn't forget - as I do sometimes - that malt has its fans.

Still with my local breweries, yesterday, I had a chance to taste, straight from the cask at the brewery, Lees brewed Draught Burton Ale, the former Ind Coope Burton Ale which was Champion Beer of Britain many years ago. You know what? Lees have made a very good fist of it indeed and the taste seemed to me, very reminiscent of the beer in its heyday. Worth seeking out if you get a chance. I'd guess though it's a pretty rare beast. There is a link to outlets here and it is rated highly too.

So, different beers, different strokes for different folks. Beer is a broad church.

If anyone has never been in a Head Brewer's Sample Cellar, it is fascinating. One cask of every gyle of every beer out in trade is there for cross checking and quality control. Compare and contrast.