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  • Cask Ale Week 2014

    Cask Ale Week is back and it's better than ever, with more pubs, brewers and pub companies supporting it than ever before!

    A recent survey showed that 37% of cask ale drinkers and 78% of cask ale publicans are aware of Cask Ale Week.  65% of drinkers claim they visit the pub more often in Cask Ale Week.

    The things they love about Cask Ale Week are, 80% Beer Tastings, 65% Beer Festivals, 43% Ale Trails, 40% Food & Beer Matching sessions

    Read More



Beer and chocolate – a match made in heaven?
Beer-loving ladies from across the industry have marked an early end to Lenten promises by hosting their annual Beer and Chocolate tasting at the Draft House, Tower Bridge.

Beer bottles with Easter egg webWith Easter firmly in their sights, the women sampled five beers matched perfectly with five different chocolates. From pale ales to porters and barley wines to golden ales, beers from Sambrooks, Fuller’s, Calsberg, Brewsters and Fordham were available to sample.

This is the third annual Beer and Chocolate tasting by beer and women group Dea Latis, named after the Celtic Goddess of Beer.

Annabel Smith, spokesperson for Dea Latis, said: "Beer is one of the most versatile types of drink there is and with this showcase, we're proving that beer and chocolate really is a match made in heaven!

"Our group's aim is to share all that is great about beer with women – some of whom are perhaps put off by the media's portrayal of beer. Typical points that can put women off are the images of the beer belly or pint glasses. With beer having fewer calories than wine and with the growing popularity of third of a pint glasses, two of those myths can be dispelled at once!

"With events such as these, we hope to make beer more accessible to women and provide the opportunity to taste the beer in an informal atmosphere."

The Beer and Chocolate matches are:

Brewster's Chocolate Cyn (4.8% ABV) with Divine Dark Chocolate with Orange & Ginger (Selected by Jane Peyton, School of Booze)

A 4.8% porter containing Fairtrade cocoa from Divine chocolatiers, and cinnamon, Chocolate Cyn is deceptively light for a dark beer, with a rich chocolate and coffee character with a spicy bitterness from the cinnamon.  This is a collaboration beer brewed with Sara Barton at Brewster's Brewing Company with three Dea Latis members - Jane Peyton, Marverine Cole, and Shea Luke. 

Jacobsen Barley Wine, 9.5% ABV, with Thornton's Alpini Continental Chocolates (Selected by Joanna Dring, communications manager, Carlsberg UK)
The 2011 vintage Jacobsen Barley Wine is brewed at the Carlsberg micro-brewery in the heart of Copenhagen. At over 9%, this is a beer that really packs a flavour punch! Its aroma is complex, with notes of liquorice, caramel and nuts along with smoky undertones. Paired with hazelnut and almond chocolate from Thornton's, the beer's full-bodied and semi-sweet taste perfectly matches the nutty chocolate. Perfect to share with friends after a scrumptious dinner party!

Fuller's Golden Pride (8.5% ABV with Merry Berry Mixed Spice & Fruit Dark Chocolate (Selected by Jane Peyton, School of Booze)
A full bodied barley wine with a huge amount of fruit character - orange marmalade, mango, figs, raisins, and treacle malt, and a firm hop base to balance the sweetness. This  beer should replace any temptation to drink Cognac after a meal! 

Sambrooks Pale Ale (4.2% ABV) with Paul A Youngs XO Marmite chocolate (Selected by Jo Miller, marketing director, Sambrooks Brewery)
Sambrooks Pale Ale is brewed using Maris Otter floor malted barley, and a blend of English and New Zealand hops including Admiral, First Gold, Celeia and Hallertau.  The result is a golden ale with an aroma of spicy meadow herbs and a sharp, marmalade and lingering dry taste. 

In keeping with the south London brewer’s tradition of working with local producers, they have matched this with the creative genius of Soho chocolatier Paul A Youngs XO Marmite chocolate.  The Madagascan chocolate in the recipe is a fine and equal partner to the fruity and tangy nature of the beer.  This is not a match for the faint hearted and or the unadventurous.  It does show the rich diversity of beer and chocolate matching.

Fordham Doppelbock (8% ABV) with dark chocolate TBC (Selected by Julie Finney-Hogg, marketing director, Heathwick)
Dark & rich with a big beer taste, Doppelbock is an exceptionally smooth, full-bodied dark lager with a bold character that is sure to brighten your spirits. Doppelbock is brewed with Munich, Pilsner and Carafa malts, combined with Perle and Tettang hops, and in strict adherence to the Reinheitsgebot, the Bavarian Purity Law of 1516. Its complexity makes it an ideal match for all types of chocolate as well as Black Forest cake and dried fruit rum tart.

If you'd like to help us in our mission to bring beer to women, please contact Annabel Smith at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 07920 058500 or download a membership form

Reading about beer is great fun and to help you in your quest, we have listed some of the most popular beer bloggers and tweeters. If you would like to be included on this list send me the link to your blog This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Name Blog Link Twitter
John Porter A Pie and a Pint http://www.apieandapint.com/ @pieandapint
Aletalk Ale Talk http://www.aletalk.co.uk/index.php @aletalk
Alex Barlow All Beer http://www.allbeer.co.uk/allbeerfinder.cfm @allbeerfinder
Marverine Cole Beer Beauty http://www.beerbeauty.co.uk/ @beerbeauty
BeerBirraBier Beer Birra Bier http://www.beerbirrabier.com/ @beerbirrabier
Tim Hampson Beer Blog http://beerandpubs.wordpress.com/ @beerhero
Steve Williams Beer Justice http://www.beerjustice.blogspot.com/ @beerjustice
Andy Mogg Beer Reviews http://www.beerreviews.co.uk/ @beerreviewsandy
Phil Hardy Beer Say http://beersay.wordpress.com/ @filrd
Steve Lamond Beers I've Known http://beersiveknown.blogspot.com/ @beersiveknown
Boak and Bailey Boak and Bailey http://boakandbailey.com/ @boakandbailey
Arfur Daley Brew Wales http://beerbrewer.blogspot.com/ @arfurd
Adrian Tierney-Jones Called to the bar http://maltworms.blogspot.com/ @atjbeer
CAMRA CAMRA http://www.camra.org.uk/ @camra_official
Tom Stainer CAMRA Newspaper http://www.camra.org.uk/ @wbandbeer
Ben and Tom Dwink http://www.dwink.com/ @dwinkcom
Eating isnt Xheating Eating Isn't Cheating http://www.eatingisntcheating.blogspot.com/ @eisntcneil
Darren Turpin Folk & Ale http://www.folkale.com/ @folkale
Ghost Drinker Ghost Drinker http://ghostdrinker.blogspot.com/ @ghostdrinker
Melissa Cole Girls Guide to Beer http://www.girlsguidetobeer.blogspot.com/ @melissacole
Good Beer Good pubs Good Beer Good Pubs http://www.goodbeergoodpubs.co.uk/ @goodbeergoodpub
Leigh Linley Good Food Good Beer http://goodfoodgoodbeer.wordpress.com/ @leighgoodstuff
Dave Bailey Hard Knott Dave http://hardknott.blogspot.com/ @hardknottdave
Rob Derbyshire HopZine http://hopzine.com/ @hopzine
The Inapub Team In a pub http://www.inapub.co.uk/ @inapub
Jeff Evans Inside Beer http://www.insidebeer.com/ @insidebeer
James Clay James Clay http://www.jamesclay.co.uk/ @doctor_beer
Morning Advertiser Morning Advertiser http://www.morningadvertiser.co.uk/ @morningad
Mark Dredge Pencil and Spoon http://www.pencilandspoon.com/ @markdredge
Pete Brown Peter Brown http://petebrown.blogspot.com/ @petebrownbeer
John Read Pint at Night http://www.pintatnight.com/ @pintatnight
Pub Diaries Pub Diaries http://pubdiaries.com/ @thepubdiaries
Real Ale Hunter Real Ale Hunter http://www.realalehunter.co.uk/ @realalehunter
Paul Garrard Real Ale Network http://www.realalenet.co.uk/ @realalenet
Real Ale reviews Real Ale Reviews http://real-ale-reviews.com/ @realalereviews
Real Ale Craft Beer Real Ale Today http://www.youtube.com/realaleguide @realaletoday
Nicholsons T'Ales Worth Knowing http://www.nicholsonspubs.co.uk/talesworthknowing/  
Reuben Gray Tale of Ale http://www.taleofale.com/ @taleofale
Tandle Man Tandle Man Beer Blog http://www.tandlemanbeerblog.blogspot.com/ @tandleman
David Lozman Taste Sensations http://www.davelozman.co.uk/ @davelozman
Zak Avery The Beer Boy http://thebeerboy.blogspot.com/ @zakavery
The Beer Cast The Beer Cast http://thebeercast.com/ @thebeercast
The Beer Nut The Beer Nut http://thebeernut.blogspot.com/ @thebeernut
Nick Mitchell The Beer Prole http://beerprole.wordpress.com/ @nickiquote
Martyn Cornell The Zythophile http://zythophile.wordpress.com/ @zythophiliac
Robert Gale Travels with Beer http://www.travelswithbeer.com/ @awv
UK Beer Blogers UK Beer Bloggers   @ukbeerbloggers
Use Your Local Use Your Local http://www.useyourlocal.com/blog/ @useyourlocal
Will Hawkes Will Hawkes http://blogs.independent.co.uk/author/willhawkes/ @will_hawkes
Gavin Aitchison York Press Points of View http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/leisure/fooddrink/pintsofview/ @pintsofview
Simon Jenkins     @jenkolovesbeer
Stuart Davies     @stuartdavies

Dea-Latis-Lisa-KimA group of women in Leeds yesterday joined the growing number of female beer drinkers when the Leeds Brewery Tap hosted a pre-Easter beer and chocolate tasting.

The tasting was organised by Dea Latis - named after the Celtic goddess of beer - a nationwide group aiming to encourage more women to enjoy beer. They have staged beer and chocolate tastings in London and Brighton before, but last night’s event was the first to be held north of the capital.

Guests tasted six different beers, each with a different chocolate designed to bring out the taste in each. Expert guidance was provided by Annabel Smith, Dea Latis founder and one of the country’s few beer sommeliers.

Smith said, “Beer and chocolate are perfect partners. They are both a balance of sweetness and bitterness, so when consumed together, the tastes and textures complement each other.

“Our guests at yesterday’s tasting included experienced beer lovers, occasional beer drinkers and complete novices, but everyone learned something new and, more importantly, had a great evening tasting beer with chocolate. “

The matches sampled by guests were:

- Leeds Brewery’s Yorkshire Gold, 4% abv and Ye Old Sun Inn Venezuelan Chocolate

- Ossett Brewery’s Treacle Stout, 5% abv with Bon Bon’s Dark Chocolate Caramels

- Brains Boilermaker IPA, 6.5% abv with Dar Chocolate and Lemon Parfait

- Jacobsen Velvet Ale, 5.9% abv with Champagne Truffles  

- Ilkley Brewery’s ‘The Mayan’ Chocolate Chipotle Stout, 5.3% abv with Turkish Delight

- Molson Coors’ Blue Moon, 5.4% abv with Terry’s Chocolate Orange

A vote was taken by the group at the end of the evening to choose their favourite beer and chocolate match, and this was won by Ilkley Brewery’s ‘The Mayan’ matched with Turkish Delight. In a double coup, ‘The Mayan’ was brewed by Harriet Marks, the only beer of the evening to be brewed by a female.

Smith concluded, “This was one of our most successful events and it’s great to move Dea Latis north of London and start involving women in other parts of the country. We chose Leeds because it has such a wonderful, thriving brewing scene and the Brewery Tap was the perfect venue for us.”

For news of upcoming Dea Latis events during 2013, visit www.dealatis.org

For information:          Annabel Smith: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 07920 058500

These are the pubs which have received the most scans in the World's Biggest Ale Trail as of 10th June 2013

Most Scanned Pubs