Sunday, February 6, 2011

"Are you a *real* Canadian?"

We had a better plan this year, buying a return bus fare that got the six of us to the Tewkesbury Winter Ale Festival a bit before noon -- we'd heard they were limiting the attendance to 300 this year, and didn't want to miss out. I don't know if they got that many, but it was certainly well attended, and better stocked this year, with plenty of choices left on this, the last day. (Last year they had little left but cider less than halfway through the final day.)

A great selection too, that I was largely unfamiliar with: I knew maybe half a dozen of the 70 ales available! Favourites included Orkney's Raven -- lovely nose, almost like pine needles -- Black Ops (can't remember the brewer) and a whopper, at 10%, called... Old Thakey? Thakes? Something like that; more like a port than an ale, but really smooth and tasty. [Correction: I didn't do too bad, actually: the Raven was by Thornbridge, Black Ops was by Salopian (the same folks that do the Lemon Dream that Tea and her friend, Liv, love), and, finally, the whopper was Thomas Sykes Ale by Burton Bridge. Thanks to Matt for digging out the pamphlet.] The entertainment was also excellent: the Tewkesbury town band, followed by Six Nations rugby on the big screen.

On one trip to the cask room, Tea was stopped by two gentlemen serving food, "Are you a real Canadian?" pointing at her recently acquired Roots swag.


"We have a question for you: how do Eskimos bury their dead?"

Tea, Matt (a fellow Canadian) and I exchanged looks and shrugs. I don't think they believed any of our suggestions, which included cremation and boat graves. (We had no clue. Turns out the answer is just like us, and, historically, under cairns.)

Awesome mustard we'd had earlier
Good times. We hit the Bank House for some grub once back in town, followed by a nightcap at a friend's place. Check out our Picasa album for more pictures from the festival.

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