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Thread: National Winter Ales Festival - anyone going?

  1. #1
    Roving RAT ROBCamra's Avatar
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    Default National Winter Ales Festival - anyone going?

    I've had the desperate misfortune to be invited to the judging on Wednesday 20th Jan.

    Simon, the landlord of The Baum, has been asked to be one of the judges in the Porters section, I've agreed to carry his bag

    This means that I get to see the judging and then the official opening ceremony (2 horse pulled drays I believe).

    It also means that I get to attend the trade session at 14:30.

    By the time it opens to the public at 17:00 I expect to be gently leaning on a wall with a silly grin on!
    A pub is for life not just for Christmas

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    This Space For Hire aleandhearty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBCamra View Post
    This means that I get to see the judging
    Oh you lucky, lucky bar steward. Jealous? Who me?

    More seriously ROB, I'd be interested to hear what you make of the judging process and how objective you think it is. Is there blind tasting for example? I know I've touched on this before, but northern beers are woefully under represented in the annual national awards, statistically it just doesn't add up. It'll be interesting to see how things shape up in Manchester
    'And where he supped the past lived still. And where he sipped the glass brimmed full' John Barleycorn, Carol Ann Duffy.

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    We're not really 'ere! trainman's Avatar
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    Life is tough ROB! Tbh, though, I usually eschew 'fests concentrating on Winter ales - I just know they're gonna mess me up! I see your calculation is that you'll be en route in 2.5hours and, let's face it, you ain't leaving at 17:00 so the Thurs head may be a tad delicate. Have a great session though, I'm pleased Manchester retains this major Camra fest - did I hear it's moved venue this year?

    One I am looking at is the rather smaller affair at Nottingham's Canalhouse (04-07Feb) featuring 56 SIBA winning beers. And, when looking at the Castle Rock website (it's their pub) I was surprised to see that 'spoons vouchers are being accepted throughout the Castle Rock estate!

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    Old & Bitter oldboots's Avatar
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    Definitely a lucky bar steward, I wish I were going but work gets in the way yet again

    Tandleman, a blogging CAMRA bod in the North West has a list of some of the delights in store

    read them here and weep

    http://tandlemanbeerblog.blogspot.com/

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  5. #5
    Roving RAT ROBCamra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trainman View Post
    Life is tough ROB! Tbh, though, I usually eschew 'fests concentrating on Winter ales - I just know they're gonna mess me up! I see your calculation is that you'll be en route in 2.5hours and, let's face it, you ain't leaving at 17:00 so the Thurs head may be a tad delicate. Have a great session though, I'm pleased Manchester retains this major Camra fest - did I hear it's moved venue this year?

    One I am looking at is the rather smaller affair at Nottingham's Canalhouse (04-07Feb) featuring 56 SIBA winning beers. And, when looking at the Castle Rock website (it's their pub) I was surprised to see that 'spoons vouchers are being accepted throughout the Castle Rock estate!
    The Canalhouse festival was great last year. It's in a separate room above the pub with all beers on handpump.

    Sadly this year it clashes with Derby Beer Fest. Whose dumb idea was that, two festivals either end of the A52 on the same days?
    A pub is for life not just for Christmas

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    We're not really 'ere! trainman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBCamra View Post

    Sadly this year it clashes with Derby Beer Fest. Whose dumb idea was that, two festivals either end of the A52 on the same days?
    Agreed - it shouldn't take much foresight to check what might be competing factors locally. But who set their date first...?

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    Roving RAT ROBCamra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldboots View Post
    Definitely a lucky bar steward, I wish I were going but work gets in the way yet again

    Tandleman, a blogging CAMRA bod in the North West has a list of some of the delights in store

    read them here and weep

    http://tandlemanbeerblog.blogspot.com/
    Tandleman is Peter Alexander, chairman of Rochdale, Oldham and Bury Camra branch. He's also the Deputy festival organiser.
    A pub is for life not just for Christmas

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    Palookaville hondo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBCamra View Post


    Tandleman is Peter Alexander, chairman of Rochdale, Oldham and Bury Camra branch. He's also the Deputy festival organiser.
    just replaced Stonch's blog with tandlemans
    "Do I know where hell is? hell is in hello"

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    Roving RAT ROBCamra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trainman View Post
    Agreed - it shouldn't take much foresight to check what might be competing factors locally. But who set their date first...?
    Last year the Derby Fest was the 1st Saturday in January as it was the 12th night festival, but the dates didn't work this year.

    The Canal House festival was a week later last year.

    Who knows who bid first though.
    Last edited by ROBCamra; 13-01-2010 at 09:57.
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  10. #10

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    I'll be there, sadly not judging this one (I judged the USA at GBBF last year). If it's the same method:

    Piece of paper with numbers 1 - 6 on, large enough for a glass to sit on each. 6 ales are then brought over (1 at a time), and as a group (around 6 of us) you agree on your top 3, in order.

    I'll be on the train from Abergavenny and back again, I imagine with a few of the local CAMRA branch.

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