Brewdog fanzine issue 4, May 2018

The next issue of fanzine is upon us. A couple of these will be sampled very soon.

Small Batch English IPA – 5.2% – IPA

An old school English IPA brewed with the addition of traditional English hops which bring lavender and bergamot to the front of the beer. Supporting the hops is a light biscuit malt flavour, followed by a dry, bitter finish with a touch of warmth.

Interstate – 4.6% – Lager

A perfectly balanced Vienna-style lager brewed with subtle spicy German hops over toasty-base malts which bring out bread crust and biscuit in the beer, followed by a bittersweet finish.

Hop Shop – 9% – IPA

This hop-forward big IPA is intense, dank and resinous, with bursts of stonefruit and citrus. Grapefruit and apricot sit on top of a building bitterness, with a honeycomb malt base followed by a dry yet bittersweet finish.

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The Planet Pavilion Café – Jodrell Bank – May 2018 – chaos theory in action

When you are surrounded by such awesome science, you might expect the simple things like a cafe to be equally good. On a scorching bank holiday they were very busy, but that’s not necessarily a sign that they were any good, being possessors of a very literal captive audience (there are no other options for a good few miles unless you bring your own).

A reasonable queue, but one which was moving along nicely. The reason for that became clear as Mrs MOFAD ordered. They took your order for items on display. You paid. And then you go to your table, drop some stuff off, and go back to pick up your order. Which is still sitting in the cabinet, so other people could be ordering it, not knowing if they are going to be able have it, because one or more people could have already secured it ahead of them. It was chaos theory in action. Orders were coming out seemingly at random, and there were just not enough people around to organise this chaos.

Eventually we did get some tasty lunches and enormous portions (although you would expect these sizes for the price paid), but the overwhelming flavour was of chaos as opposed to coronation/lightly curried chicken. And there was a lot of celery in the salad. Who wants that? Celery is not MOFAD approved.

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It seems they are trading on the rather good views you get of this thing…

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Must try harder!

Mr Vongs, Leek, May 2018

The camping takeaway theme continues. After a lovely day out with a short-ish wander around Danebridge, Lud’s Church and a tiny bit of The Roaches, we were back at the camp site and thinking about what to have for dinner. Being a very organised camp site (it’s what Camping and Caravan Club sites are known for), they have a selection of menus from local takeaways, who (crucially) deliver to the site.

Much like Friday night, we were rather hungry, so got our order in quickly, and were soon chomping down on some tasty Chinese. Regular readers will know exactly what I ordered, the one and only kung po chicken, which is a great yardstick for any Chinese restaurant.

This one had a decent amount of chilli, although I would have liked more cashews and pineapple, perhaps I’ve been spoilt by Wan’s Cottage who seem to have the best kung po chicken around. For the second time this weekend, it’s another no photo post, too busy eating to stop and capture this one for posterity. By now you should know what kung po chicken is supposed to look like…

The Lazy Trout, Meerbrook, May 2018

This was a hard earned dinner. We only just made it on time. We foolishly thought that we’d have plenty of time to get back to the camp site, have a cup of tea and some cake, and then have a shower and go to the pub. A 14 mile walk over 9 hours put paid to that idea. We just had enough time to get back to the car and drive back to The Lazy Trout, a pub we went to not one, not two, but three times in April 2017.

We fell into the little dining area at the back, exhausted, but glad that we had booked in advance (online, because it’s 2018!) A good start to the evening took the form of Indian Runner by Wincle Brewery, named after the comedy ducks, a decent pale ale with citrus hints. It didn’t last long!

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Mrs MOFAD had gone for the obvious curry choice and enjoyed it very much. I filled up on protein with this big beefy burger, which was absolutely gorgeous, I love a decent burger and this was definitely one of those, nice crisp bacon and big flavoured cheese added to the experience. Even the salad was more than the token limp iceberg found in other places.

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It’s fair to say that we had earned another beer and a pudding (or gin and a pudding if you are Karon or Mrs MOFAD). The beer was Black Grouse Stout by Staffordshire Brewery, smooth chocolate hints and very easy drinking. It matched well with the last bit of burger, and equally as well with the pudding.

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That pudding was this lovely pavlovian item, lots of lovely early season strawberries, perfectly whipped cream and crisp meringue nests.

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A delightful return to one of my pubs of the month from April last year (I still haven’t picked a winner as there were so many good ones). This is a fantastic pub with great food and drink and lovely people. Definitely worth a visit, even if you haven’t had a 14 mile walk beforehand!

Nui’s Kitchen, Leek Camping and Caravanning Club Site, May 2018

Yes, it’s another camping and takeaway post, and the best kind, where the takeaway comes to your camp site.

After a lovely trundle around the Thornbridge brewery tour earlier on, we didn’t really want to go out and about, so having a lovely little Thai takeaway turn up on site was ideal. We popped over after a little while and had a good chat to Nui who was beavering away behind the stoves, cooking everything fresh to order. We had some nice spring rolls (lovely and crisp) and some stir fry and noodles which was also really good, a flavourful level of spice without being full of mad chilli flavours.

It was so good we had wolfed it all down before I had a chance to take a photo, so you’ll have to have one of that most rare of things, a post without a photo.

If you find Nui’s kitchen at a camp site or event near you, it’s a great place to get your dinner from.

Brewdog Fanzine issue 3, May 2018

The next issue of fanzine is upon us. Might be a while before these ones get sampled as there are a couple of big beasts.

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Ten Ton Truck (Espresso Edition) – 10% – Stout / Porter

An evolution of previous Fanzine release, Nebula with the addition of espresso coffee. Fruity espresso, bitter chocolate and roastiness on the nose. Followed by a payload of bitter coffee red berry, dark chocolate and some floral notes.

Pulp Patriot – 9.5% – IPA

An amped up spin on our previous Milkshake IPA, this fruited NEIPA combines peach, mango and milk sugar with low bitterness. A juggernaut of a double IPA that delivers a payload of big fruit with mango and peach front and centre. Milk sugar builds and rounds out the full juicy notes.

Zephyr V2 (Lime Gose Edition) – 4.6% – Sour Ale

The latest twist on our Fanzine session sour, emulating a sour German wheat ale, with lime and salt. A zesty gose with a twist of lime and a pinch of salt to crank up the crisp sour character. A juicy, bright beer, with a light acidity resting on a biscuity backbone.

 

Craft Beer Co, Islington, May 2018

A pleasant day in London town. Once again, I was looking out for somewhere to grab a beer and something to eat before heading for the train home. I was pretty certain that the beer would be good after visiting another of their bars this year, so it was worth taking a chance on the food.

On to that beer. First up Jessamine from Thornbridge, a jasmine and orange ale with Wiillamette hops. The jasmine comes through and a touch of pithiness from the orange. Interesting. Also making appearance tonight was Windle, another Thornbridge beer. This was clean and smooth with a lemon note somewhere in the background.

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Dinner was a chicken burger, aka posh KFC, aka The Southern Bell, which comprises of a spicy butter fried chicken breast, guacamole, iceberg lettuce (boo!), tomato, chipotle mayo and rosemary fries.

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As posh chicken burgers go, it was pretty good. This is a pleasant old school pub with a modern attitude to beer and food. Given that’s it’s only around a 15 minute walk from St Pancras, I suspect I shall find myself here again this year.