Sunday 24 August 2014

Ted and the missing person

Who is Melissa Cole .. why is she famous and why can’t I find her?  She describes herself as a sommALEier, which means she’s really an expert on beer. Every cool beer event I have been to in the last little while people keep saying to me “Hey Ted did you see Melissa?, she was just here” or “oh no Ted you just missed Melissa”.  I was beginning to wonder if this was some big joke that I wasn't in on like the Tom Collins cocktail story.  So when I saw she was doing an “off flavours” beer tutorial as part of the beer festival in London of course I jumped at the chance to finally meet her. Once I got to the "tasting" it suddenly dawned on me .. did I actually know what “off flavours” meant in reality, and in my haste to finally meet Melissa, had I made a really gigantic mistake.

I felt better once I sat down and we were given a little sample of good beer from the pub hosting the event. BrewDog “Dead Pony Club” and no ... I didn’t ask about the ingredients.

 Melissa told us we would be given beer samples that reflected three "off" flavours per round (mercifully only two rounds) and we had to guess, oh I mean decide, through superior old factory and taste bud analysis, which was which. Thankfully, the samples were small. Off flavours can range from the almost innocuous like butter and banana, through metallic and blood, to the truly unpleasant, seriously ... baby sick or skunk anyone!!

We asked Melissa “who made all these terribly flawed beers?” and she laughed and said “oh they are ghosts” ... Huh? ... apparently you buy the most ubiquitous industrially produced lager you can find and add the “I prepared these earlier” flawed characteristics "flavour" capsules.

I am happy to report that my table mates and I got all six of the “offs” correct.  Lucky for them as they are soon to open a store in up and coming Peckham to offer great beer, fabulous vinyl of the music type, and hot sauce … Hop Burns and Black.

As a prize we were given BrewDog currency, with no less than the Governor of the Bank of England's signature on it, to purchase something that we would actually like to drink. I chose the Roosters “Baby Face Assassin” ... and went home happy. 


Gunn said...

Lucky YOU!
Always nice to learn ( and taste) something new.

Sharon said...

You are a brave one! I don't think I could have done this taste test. Mostly because I'm not much of beer drinker.

sweetbriardreams said...

My word, it's a bit like the Harry Potter sweets... ear wax flavour anyone?!

William Kendall said...

Baby Face Assassin is the name of a brew?

Jack said...

What happened to the days when beer was just beer?

Stefan Jansson said...

Great story and who doesn't like beer!

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