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Tuesday's Dead

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"Whoa, where do you go?  When you don't want no one to know? Who told tomorrow Tuesday's dead" (Tuesday's Dead: Cat Stevens) 
When I was a wee pup: back in ye olden days of Middle-earth, when Gandalf was just starting out, I learnt of the Tuesday Night Test. These were the days of pubs on every street corner (or so it seemed) and pubs selling gallons of Mild etc. Quality though, as ever, was an issue. And although you got to know where the best pints were to be had, the real test was what was the beer like on a Tuesday night? Any pub that could deliver on what was traditionally the quietest day was probably going to be a safe bet anytime.

Fast forward to the internet age and whilst quality may still be an issue, despite the falling number of outlets, what you can't fault is the choice. Or so the theory goes. A Tuesday afternoon stroll round Manchester therefore should be a piece of the proverbial cake. No problem at the first stop, the Pilcrow, where both the Ri…

That Friday Feeling

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It's Friday. You've got that Friday feeling. The sun, as always, is shining down on the great metropolis of Mancunia. Time for an afternoon aperitif or two. So it was that the clarion call for drinking compadres went out. And was duly answered. Now I'm not one to gossip but one thing I have observed is that some of those CAMRA members do like a bit of the old imbibing. And who am I to disappoint them?

Being proudly au fait with the Manchester drinking scene, you can forget that some poor devils are not quite as up to date as they should be. Having heard of, but never having been to, GRUB; the first stop was obvious. A now almost iconic Manchester street food outfit, they have come out of their winter hideaway (it can be cold and wet in Manchester, sometimes) and are now back outside at the Mayfield on Baring St.


If you can, go to one of their plant powered Sunday events as they are tremendous. However, if you can't make that, the Friday/Saturday events aren't too s…

The Thirsty Fish

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Bury's first, but hopefully not the last, micropub opened on Thursday at 3pm. Situated on the edge of the Millgate shopping precinct, right by the bus station, it is handily placed to catch shoppers just passing by and the drinkers wanting a last hooray before catching their bus.


It's a small corner unit with natural light flooding in through the large glass panels that make up its exterior. There is a mix of high and low tables with the bar cleverly wedged at the back to maximise space. The handpumps are along the side wall while a blackboard displays the current offerings.


There are eight real ales on offer alongside cider, German beer and the odd crafty keg. There's also bottled beer for those who like that sort of thing. Behind the bar you may recognise Petr who until recently was at the Rose and Crown and don't be surprised to see a few familiar faces in front of the bar as well.


This being the opening day, there were plenty of Bury's glittering crafteratti on…

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Camba Coffee Porter

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Dark mornings and dark evenings. Time to go to the dark side. Well here we are. You like coffee in the morning. You like beer in the morning-after all, who doesn't? So theoretically, this could be the perfect combination.
Yet again it's from those crafty German brewers, Camba. It's a 330ml bottle and weighs in at 5.4%. It poured jet black with a healthy-sized mocha coloured head. A very powerful aroma gave strong notes of coffee, dark chocolate, caramel and a slight smokiness.
Mouthfeel was quite light. You don't really get the full alcohol effect but rather a pleasant warming after the first mouthful or two. Perhaps surprisingly the coffee isn't as dominant as the aroma might suggest. Rather it's more like a filter coffee with chocolate sprinkled on top. Balance seems to be the key here.
Tyson says: Well-balanced, you get sweet notes offset by the bitterness of the hops. Not bad, if you go for this sort of thing.

Christmas Eve Breakfast Beer Tasting Camba Hop Gun

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Top Gun, eh? Now there was a film. 1986, Tom Cruise, Kelly McGillis etc. Ah, happy days. Actually this beer has absolutely nothing to do with that film but looks worth drinking anyway. After all, it's Christmas Eve and you need to start the festivities somewhere.
It's from those crafty German lads again and of course comes in a 330ml bottle and is 6.4%. It poured chestnut in colour with good carbonation and a two-finger tan foam topping. The aroma was punchy: lots of cherry, figs, raisins along with caramel and some classic citrus notes.
The taste was also rich. Yes, some fruity bitterness and a bit of pine, but also a lot of sweetness. There's toffee and caramel and a slight biscuit twang along with a hint of pepper. It comes together but the hop notes are somewhat lost in the other flavours that end in a bitter-sweet finish.
Tyson says: A little disappointed with this, given the name and the promise of US hops. Too many characteristics of a red ale to really satisfy the …

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Camba Black Pearl Imperial Stout

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Christmas time, eh? Doesn't it make you think of Germany? No? Well that's my tenuous link to this morning's beer. Yes, it's those German lads again. Of course there are many British beers you can drink. And you could, of course, drink local beers. But then some world-famous blogger has already nabbed that market. Which leaves me on the continental road to ruin.
This is the standard 330ml bottle and, as befits an Imperial Stout, is a hefty 9.8%. It poured jet black-no light coming through this one-with a large tan coloured head. The aroma is a rich mix of dark chocolate, coffee, plums and a slight sweetness as the alcohol peeks through.
Medium bodied, it's well-balanced and rich in flavour. There's chocolate, liquorice, plenty of dark fruits and just a hint of smokiness at the back end. There's no hiding that this is a boozy little number but there is enough going on to distract the palate and keep you interested in having another swig.

Tyson says: Boozy but…

Breakfast Beer Tasting: Camba Bavaria Ei Pi Ai

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Back to the foreign stuff today. What, I hear you say. The country is in free-fall, post-Brexit, with beer and cheese prices soaring and the pound not worth an Uzbek's arse-wipe. Now's the time to pull up those Union Jack braces and stop messing around with that foreign muck. Be that as it may, today we get to see what old Fritz can do.
The lads from Camba Bavaria knock out some very decent stuff and this comes highly recommended. It's a 330ml bottle and being an Imperial IPA comes in at 8%. The hop content: Centennial, Cascade, Chinook and Citra looks good and promises to deliver a mouth watering 62 IBUs.
It poured a hazy golden-orange with good carbonation and a reasonable one-finger frothy white head. The aroma was pungent and fruity. Lots of ripe oranges, grapefruit, lychee with a slight underlying floral/honey note. Plenty of flavour with this one; heavy citrus notes, pineapple, lemon, kind of like an unsweetened fruit salad really. Well balanced with very little trace…