Summer House Beer Festival, October 2016

There is of course no such thing.

This “beer festival” was a self-curated drinking session featuring myself and regular MOFAD drinking companions Matt & Steve. We had a focus on dark beers tonight, and we had all brought a selection of bottles with us to share and try.

We started with Umbral Abyss by Vibrant Forest Brewery (procured by Matt). Whilst it lacked the now legendary Vibrant effervescence, there were good smooth coffee notes running through this one. Definintely one for coffee-ists like Bruce and Alec.

I took a quick turn away from the darkness here, for another Vibrant Forest brew, a Radicale Belgian Zuur Bier, which was tart but mellowed nicely – a good sour beer.

We stayed with Vibrant Forest for their Black Forest, which was a piquant porter indeed.

We moved on to some of my bottles next with an Imperial Brown Stout London 1856 by The Kernel Brewery, which was thick, brown and very chewy. We then moved on to Export Stout London 1890 by The Kernel Brewery, another of mine, which was very dark and very delicious. One of my beers of the night for sure.

This was followed by another favourite, a Bourbon Oktober again by Vibrant Forest Brewery. The second time I’ve had this big bourbon vanilla beast this year.

A mis-step next. We opened two bottles of Belgian Dubbel by Vibrant Forest. The first was very flat and tasted pretty off. The second had more carbonation but was still not right. We should have been getting raisins and similar but we just had to pour them away. Something not right with the batch perhaps?

And as you do, we finished with coffee. Guatemalan Coffee Extra Porter by Buxton Brewery to be precise. Massive coffee nose, big coffee flavours and some vanilla too. This was also a highlight of the evening.

It’s fair to say that our curated and self-hosted mini beer festival was a success. Buy beers, share beers with friends. It’s a great way to spend an evening.

Advertisements

Southwold and Reydon Chinese Takeaway, Reydon, Suffolk

Another quick post.

Tonight was the first night of our Suffolk holiday. As well as regular MOFAD companions Hazel & Matt, for 24 hours we were to be joined by almost as regular MOFAD companions Steve & Janette, who made the short trip across the border to join us for a brief sojourn.

We all arrived at our cottage just after 4pm, got unpacked, had some tea and coffee, and then cracked open a few bottles of tasty alcoholic beverages. Thoughts soon turned to dinner, and after a quick phone call revealed that the local pub was fully booked for the night, we quickly decided upon a takeaway, and soon found a very local option who delivered.

Everyone chose their meals and it wasn’t long before several boxes of food turned up on our doorstep. One of the things that we all agreed on was crispy duck:-

We ordered a whole duck between us, and it arrived pre-shredded for our convenience. I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad duck, and this one wasn’t going to break that duck, as it was lovely, and there was loads to go round. Good hoi sin sauce too.

As I’ve mentioned before, my test for any Chinese is their Kung Po chicken, so that was my order tonight, along with some house special fried rice. It was very tasty, with a really good amount of fresh chilli. No pineapple in this one, and a few more cashew nuts would have added some more crunch. This was another “sweet’n’sour battered chicken”, also seen earlier on this year in Nuneaton and first seen last year at Dragon Cottage, and it worked well again here. The sauce was sticky, thick and sweet with that lovely hit of chilli. Steve also had some and enjoyed it.

Everyone was pleased with their selection, and we were all satisfied with full stomachs.

We were holding our own mini beer festival, concentrating mostly on darker beers, but I had to switch to something hoppy to match up with the chilli hit of the kung po. This Summit pale ale did just that, a great modern pale ale with hoppy and fruity notes to batlle the spiciness.

It’s fair to say this is a great little takeaway, perfect for the first night of a holiday. After filling up with food we moved on to games and more beer…