Friday, 15 April 2011

Westy 12 and a plea for music

Morning everyone. First of all I wanna say thanks to you all because this blog has been getting more readers week on week, and considering I wasn't expecting to get any bugger reading it...I just thought it would be a good idea to raise a virtual pint and say cheers.

I'm going to be a slightly lazy bugger today and post a beer review that I wrote about 6 months ago, but never got posted. There is a reason to my blatant laziness....A) Because this was my first ever attempt to write a beer review (so that's why I was kinda hesitant to publish it). And B) Its a bloody rare and special beer to try. Enjoy.

" Well Its been a wile since I’ve treated myself to anything special, and in the never ending quest for beer…I thought that I would go all out this time, so with a lot of looking around and a bit of splashing the cash (£30 for one bloody bottle) I'm going to review the famed westvleteren 12. This being a beer I've been waiting to try for sometime and as some of you out there will know, has a lot of high praise. Its kind of nerving to see what I make of it because as much as beer is about personal tastes, if I don’t like something that is consistently praised to be the best beer in the world (and is by far the biggest pain in the arse to get a hold of because normally the only way to get it is to phone ahead, drive to the brewery in Belgium and pick up just one case…no wonder is so damn pricey) does that mean I should just pack up this whole beer blogging malarkey and leave it to the big guns?? Naaa sod that. On to the beer!

pouring the beer in to a Belgian chalice. hand shaking, not wanting to over pour and for it to froth up everywhere and waste any of the precious beer. its appearance is dark and sinfully rich, with a dark chocolaty colour that if held to the light, just shows a faint shade of crimson trying to get through. luckily I poured it slowly because although it only has a thin, lacing head, there's a hell of a lot of carbonation in this bad boy. well that's wired. now amazingly the strongest aroma I'm getting from the glass is that of a blue cheese, which is oddly pleasant because it doesn't just stand there alone, wafting up the place, but is backed up by a rich plummyness and is then balanced by the unmistakable smell of dark Candi sugar. Here it is, the moment I've been waiting for. The taste. Wow. Teeth tackingly rich, wonderfully dark bitter chocolate coats the tongue which is then massaged with the flavours of cloves and a faint liquorice aftertaste coming up behind. the highly visible carbonation is amazingly tamed by the smoothness of the beer, which in turn helps the finish of sweet dried fruits and a delicate rummy flavour balance out nicely.

I have to say, its a damn fine beer, but...but not the best beer in the world in my opinion. not even the best quadruple either. I think the Rochefort 10 and St Bernardus alt 12 just edge it on being better beers. I cant explain how, but they are. plus the asking price the average Joe has to pay for this beer, just isn't worth it, but is defiantly worth the experience and if I ever found myself in Belgium, I would certainly try it again."

Now I would like a little word about something important. As those of you who have been coming to the pub since we first opened almost a year ago now will know, one of the main draws during the summer was the pubs open mic nights. Talented musicians from Rye, the surround areas and further afield (if I remember rightly, we had a very talented singer, song writer from Canada at some point) would come and play all manner of music styles. From jazz to blues, classic rock to folk and prog to someone begging to play Raining blood by was all there. The pub was always busy, with often only enough time for 1 or 2 songs each, it created at great atmosphere and became another reason why I loved working here...but sadly, since winter came, open mic has all but died. Now that we are coming into summer again, I ask for your support in getting these fantastic evenings of music (and other talents!!...story telling, comedy and poetry etc.. are welcome) running again. I'm not asking this because I have the takings in the till at mind...but because I know that there are sooo many people around here that are fantastic musicians and don't always get a chance to show it in front of other people...and plus it keeps me entertained as well :). So guitar players, song singers, drum beaters, trumpet blowers and people of any skill and talent at any level...please come on the 28th of April and show your support....thanks!!


  1. Here here, everyone should turn up even if just to listen. Chris was amazing last night as was Andy! Once I feel confident enough I will also join in the communal effort for fun times!!!

  2. As someone who *really* likes a good pint and (up till now) has raved about the Queen's Head, I feel I have to say that you're chasing me out with the music.

    Certainly have music nights for those that want them, but never forget there are a *lot* of people who don't want the music. Intending no disrespect to the musicians, if I can be told when they are playing, I'll come on another night.

  3. I see your point and yes your right to a degree, but we have posters and facebook updates about when we have music on and unfortunately most pubs have to get bands in to bring in the masses....but at least we mix it up with jazz, blues, folk and lots of random music styles rather then your basic pub rock band over and over again....or god forbid...drum and bass or rap

  4. Nice beer review. I've had Westy 12 a few times now and I love drinking it because it's interesting and exciting. I like the hype around it, I like the conversation it generates. It's not the best beer to my tastes but it doesn't stop me wanting to fill a cupboard with it.

  5. Hey, thanks! Yeah the whole story of the abbey and its brewing is the main reason I was sooo eager to try it, and as annoying as it makes it to get ahold of...I think it great the monks dont brew any more then needed. I may have to make a visit one day