Wednesday 18 December 2013

When a mild is borne

Dark matters: an old man's drink
that looks the part
As the rains of a thousand Manchesters spatter the backyard to wash away the grime of the day - and leak into my badly designed Renault no doubt - so do I reach for another beer to soothe the pain of another tough shift at the coalface of life. 

In fairness, it hasn't been that trying, so the fact the beer is a low-strength mild is as fitting as it is welcome. Actually, apart from a bit of late evening fractiousness from the nippers, it's been pretty good, all things considered.

Work went as well as could be expected, I managed to do some shopping and the dinner I cooked was wolfed down with some enthusiasm. But all the running around has kind of taken it out of me and I'm more than happy to be sitting in my comfy office chair taking it easy and rattling out some not-particularly well-chosen words.

Still, as a couple of people commented earlier, we're only a week away from Christmas and, more importantly, seven beers away from the end of the calendar for another year. So far, I've managed to stay true to the one-a-day philosophy that underpins the blog (despite never having achieved that feat in the 8+ years I've been trying). Only one more serious test remains - the Caught by the River Christmas party.

Having scored a mild tonight, it stands to reason tomorrow's will be a stinker, so I think I'll have to sample it at work and 'speed blog' about it.

But before then, there is the tiny matter of a truly small beer to drink.

Beer: Mild
Strength: A piddling 3.9%
Smell: Christmas pudding out of the bottle; more like Bourbon Creams from the glass.
Tasting notes: Ah, mild. Long ago when the little Lancashire hill town of Oldham had its own brewery, this is the drink I would turn to. Principally because it was dirt cheap. When I started being served in the pubs, OB Mild was about 63p a pint. You could be fairly drunk for less than £3.50, so naturally I developed a taste for the stuff. I liked the nuttiness, the wateriness, the treaclyness (not sure that's a word, but stay with me on this). And I liked the fact no one else my age would touch it; here was an old man's drink for sure. I remember explaining it that way to a girl I'd convinced to go out with me after ordering a pint in a pub in Altrincham. She already thought I was too old for her; this sealed it without a shadow of doubt. But I wasn't bitter (heh). And after she left, I had a couple more milds for good measure and left the pub whistling. This mild has transported me right back there. It's a fine example of a creamy, dignified, brooding, working-class pint that cared nor still cares for what the good-looking girls of Cheshire think of them. I'd like more.
Session factor: See above for clues. If the entire calendar had been filled with this, I would not have minded.
Gut reaction: Mild by name, this is gloriously understated. This beer is my friend, for Godssakes. It's not going to cause trouble now.

Actual beer: Cotswold Spring Old Sodbury Mild. I'll be getting more of this soon.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Brilliant. Great anecdote and enthusiasm for the beer. Now about to check Thursday's beer which I saw was a 7% blockbuster....