Visit the Called to the bar site

To the Victorian Lego of Westminster for the launch of the World’s Biggest Pub Quiz (March 25 for the Family Charity Association, it provides hard-up families with their hols, does a good job, if you can get your boozer to help please do, see here). However, I’m not here with the begging bowl, what I wanted to write about was a pint I had beforehand at St Stephen’s Tavern, close to the Westminster Tube. It’s a Badger pub. I’m not a great fan of their fruit beers, and I often feel they could up the hop rate on their regulars. They’re good people though and I love their Oddfellows Arms in Wimbourne (right), which is straight out of an MR James novel. However, I do enjoy Hopping Hare and First Gold (the latter is always a good pre-cinema pint at the Hankridge Arms in Taunton, I have memories of it providing me sustenance — when I think it was just called Best Bitter — especially when I went to see Saving Private Ryan, which I watched cause I thought the first 15 mins might help me if my wife, who was pregnant, had to have a c-section, which she did and it did, I suppose I should watch The Hurt Locker if I am called onto defuse a bomb).
However, back to the present, I ordered Tanglefoot, which I have always enjoyed and found myself comparing it to a dry Gewurtztraminer — there’s a dryness and a grape-like fruitiness which you half expect to topple over into sweetness but doesn’t; this was intriguing and something I hadn’t noted before. I look at my notes from last year’s visit and I didn’t get that (melon/peardrops on the nose, dark gold in colour, nose also spicy, hint of toffee) but if beer is the new wine (which it isn’t of course) then this is from Alsace (or even the Moselle if you really want to stretch things) rather than Mars. And that means I enjoyed it (I sent some tasting notes to a brewer the other day and on receipt he asked ‘but did you enjoy it’. Of course I did.).