What larks this year's Pigs Ear Festival brought- all cushioned with an amazing selection of winter warming porters, stouts and strong ales and sponsored by the lovely Brodies.
Wednesday night saw me and bro go as punters- nice to get to a festival early on for the full selection, but a little tricky on the head the following morning. We spent the night cramming in as many of the Christmas beers and porters as we could, including the intriguingly wierd Christmas Wheat by Pitfield and Milestone's Harry Porter. Magic. Brodie's festival special, Piggy Winkle's Christmas Tinkle, was deceptively festive for the light hoppy flavour- I reckon there's some cloves in there somewhere. We had a lovely chat with James Brodie (who, according to Facebook, felt even more hungover than I did) and I got confused for Lizzie several times due to me T-shirt. We left feeling festive, more than merry and with some good tips about beer festivals in New York.
Friday took me behind the bar as a volunteer, something that every CAMRA member should do at least once, if for nothing else but the random chats with very, very drunk people (and all the free beer). After 4 hours behind the bar, I'd been offered 5 pints, asked out by a 60 year old South African, had 8 conversations about why a girl like me hangs out with 'all these old men' and advised lots of very enthusiastic but decidedly clueless young beer drinkers. One guy declared me a 'beero' (which is apparently a beer hero) after introducing him to the joy of Saffron's heavenly Chestnut Grove. Brilliant fun, and we even got a lock in with the full range to choose from. Now there's why I like to hang out with all these old men. And the fact that they are (on the whole) rather lovely.