Strange tales of ale

New beer book

For an eclectic look at the world of beer over two millennia, grab a copy of Strange Tales of Ale by British beer author, historian and blogger, Martyn Cornell.

Cornell’s new book kicks off with the tragic tale of London’s great beer flood of 1814. He writes, “A huge vat filled with maturing porter fell apart at Henry Meux’s Horse Shoe brewery. More than 570 tons of beer crashed through the brewery’s back wall and out into the slums behind in a vast wave at least 15 feet high”. Eight women and children died and others were injured.

On a happier note, Cornell details how RAF Spitfire pilots, with tacit approval of the Air Ministry, flew beer in “jettison tanks” to the troops in Normandy in the weeks following D-Day.

The book is available in electronic and print format from Amazon and Google Books.

Beer reviews

Bright Brewery Smoko Rauchbier 330ml $5
Smoko emulates the beechwood-smoked beers (rauchbier) of Bamberg, Germany, where it makes delicious company, as I found out firsthand, for liver dumpling soup. So it’s a forceful beer to enjoy with rich food, not quinoa. Smoko reeks of campfire clothing and bacon, combining rich malt and bitter hops with meaty, smoky flavours.

Bright Brewery Alpine Ale 330ml $3.95
Craft brewers explore every corner of the beer world, at times challenging our senses with powerful flavour combinations. But they also make simpler brews for everyday quaffing. Bright Brewery succeeds in this area with its single malt, single hop Alpine Ale. It’s malty, tasty, fresh and finishes with a balanced, lingering hops bitterness.

Copyright © Chris Shanahan 2015
First published 15 and 16 September in goodfood.com.au  and the Canberra Times

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