The Friday Pint 2016 #1 – Drinking In America

Those of you who know me well will probably know that last year I was in the process of moving to America to live with my fiance and get married. As a result, a lot of things, including this, got somewhat abandoned. As it is, I am now in America, and have already started trying some of the new beers and breweries that have emerged since I was last here in February. I’ll be writing about those in the weeks and months to come, but first, some words on a beer I have left behind (with the exception of six cans I managed to fit in my case).

Regular readers of this blog (or of my twitter stream) will be aware of the Dancing Man Brewery. Originally set up in The Platform Tavern, last year saw them expand into the old Wool House a few hundred yards down the road. The improved capacity has led to improved quality in the beers, and the increased number of taps has led to some good guests featuring on the bar. Combined with The Butchers Hook, and the opening of Sadler’s first location outside of the Midlands, Southampton has become a good place to drink in the last year.

Going back to Dancing Man, and in particular, bottled and canned Dancing Man. A few Dancing Man beers were bottled a couple of years ago, around the release of the 200th brew, Smokin’ Banjos. Unfortunately, those bottles didn’t quite live up to how the beers tasted on draft.

Moving forward to today, and Dancing Man beer is once again available to drink at home. This time however, it comes in cans. Currently, it is just Big Casino, Dancing Man’s IPA (Available from Bitter Virtue for £2.40 a can) that has been canned.  The can I had on launch night tasted wonderful. By far the best I have tasted Big Casino in the time it’s existed.

As alluded to early, I took a six pack of Big Casino over to America with me. It was the first beer I had after a few dry days to give my body a chance to recover from all the farewell drinks. Compared to the can I had in The Dancing Man, this can (which had travelled over 3000 miles) didn’t taste as good. I’m going to put this down to the age old problem many beers have of “it doesn’t travel well”.

That being said though, it’s still a fine tasty beer. The problem comes when you have an example as good as that first can I had to compare it to, and you find yourself prone to nitpicking. As it is, the only problem I have is that it doesn’t taste as good as it did in Southampton, and really, I’m the only person I can blame for that. I probably should have opened a can at home before I left.

That seems like enough for this week. As I write it’s still New Year’s Eve, I have a can of Big Casino, and a bottle of Lagunitas Maximus in the fridge, and a selection of locally distilled spirits in the drinks cabinet. I’m sorted for the night.

However your 2015 was, have a great 2016.