2013 has seen a change in my beer drinking habits. It may have been this episode in 2012 which changed my outlook, but I have turned into a mamil. I entered 2013 nearly two stones lighter and considerably fitter than I entered 2012. I have experienced a reduction in appetite for food and beer. Strangely, my beer tastes have also changed. The most conspicuous aspect of this change is that my tolerance for bitterness has reduced to such a degree that I find, for instance, IPAs almost unbearable. The corollary is that I have renewed my passion for the beers of Belgium, a country that has largely escaped the big-hop tyranny. I now crave delicacy, a characteristic sadly sometimes lacking in the marvellous new wave we call "Craft."
In the following I am not going to mention any beers from my home county of Cumbria. I know many of the brewers so I want to avoid any snipey comments about favouritism.
I am also not going to mention any beers from my brother's brewery, Out There Brewing Company, where I am occasional mash-tun digger-outerer. I am especially not going to mention his spectacular "Next Stop Mars" which is currently available in Newcastle's finest hostelries.