Saturday 22 December 2012

Don't call me Ska face

Ska tissue: Pinstripe is pretty flimsy
under any kind of scrutiny
Bleary-eyed and blinking, yawning at the day's drear, I climbed into my trusty off-white (read: dirty) steed and motored the watery miles to Lewes in search of Christmas. 

Or gifts, to be more accurate, since bar two presents I've left it late again this year. Although not quite the mad dash my previous forays into Christmas shopping have been, just three days to go is still cutting it close.

It's not so much that it puts me into a blind panic, rather it generally ends up with me avoiding buying stuff for either myself or people I've already bought for while trudging to shop after endless shop. With some good fortune this year, I did bump into my sister, who had some good hints and tips on what to buy her offspring. Still managed to buy myself a book I know no one will think of getting me and some rather posh cheese that stinks to high Heaven from a Frenchman on the high street.

All that traipsing around hasn't half taken it out of me, though. It's all very well having ideological objections to the likes of Amazon, but it doesn't half mean extra legwork.

Having said that, I've detected a distinctly friendlier vibe from the local shopkeepers I've bought from today. Does seem they're doing their best to provide a warmer welcome than would be found on the web and despite things costing slightly more, I have preferred the experience.

And given it was coming down in buckets full, I had the perfect excuse to duck into the new Harvey's pub - the Rights of Man - on Lewes High Street. Still smells a bit new and it'll take a while to feel like a proper boozer, but the pint of Old Ale I sampled seemed well kept.

Flagging now, though. Would have quite happily stayed flopped on the sofa like a catatonic were it not for the advent of the Strictly Come Dancing final being watched in this household. So I shun it in favour of this.

Beer: Ska Breweing Pinstripe Red Ale
Strength: An undetectable (due to poor labelling mostly) and faintly pedantic 5.15%
Colour: Copper kettle orange and chimney red
Tasting notes: Almost certainly a beer that has a better name than a taste. It's just so unconvincing in every department. As a case in point, I'm going to have to go back to the smell category later as I can't quite pin it. As for the flavour, well, it's about as lazy as I'm feeling now. Post-prandial slowdown in an over-warm house has hit me and you get the impression this beer can't be arsed that much either. Instead it slumps on your tongue like an irritating house guest out-staying its welcome and smelling a mite fusty. It will proffer conversation now and then, all too briefly, but as it generally doesn't have much interesting to say, it mostly shuts up and gets on with its business of quietly boring the pants off people. A shame. I like some of this brewery's other beers and you are given the impression this stuff was once quite entertaining in its day. But now it's old, tired and too awkward to delight, so disappoints instead.
Gut reaction: Rather gassy and prone to provoking ructions.
Session factor: Relatively high as it's light, inoffensive and not particularly bothersome
Arbitrary score: 160

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