From the HBD Archive
Subject: unknown
Date: 1992-06-23 11:49:02 GMT

Subject English Bitter....

Eric Pepke writes:

>Paul Stafiniak asks about English bitter. Though an American, I travel to
>England quite a lot and drink prodigious quantities of the stuff, so I

As an Englishman living in the Real Ale mecca of Salford/Mancheter area
(Thats NW England for those not sure !), who also drinks gallons of bitter,
I commend your good taste !

>style that Americans in general and the AHA in particular does. A beer
>style over there is much more likely to describe a range of
>characteristics, which may overlap with other beer styles. "Bitter" is
>a continuum, not a point.)

Absolutely right, there are many different types of 'Bitter'. Some good
some ... Oh Oh I nearly forgot the golden rule which states that there is
no such thing as BAD beer. just that some is better than others !

>a tang which is hard to describe. None are heavily carbonated. In London,
>beer is served practically flat. Go up North and it gets fizzier, but
>never so fizzy as any bottled ale.

It depends what you mean by 'fizzy'. Both Real Ale and Keg beer is pulled
flat into 20 ounce glasses in the South of England, Whereas up north
many pubs use 24 ounce glasses and pull the beer with a thick head on top.
Keg beer always tastes gassier than Real Ale because it is chemically killed
and filtered before being artificially carbonated. Real Ale uses the natural
carbonation provided by the yeast and is not treated in any way, apart from
the occaisonal use of finings to clear a particularly stubborn barrel.

Happy brewing and tasty drinking,

Mike Smedley

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