Friday 30 December 2022


The end of another year has me thinking. About what I'm doing. What is the point of it?

Why do I blog? I've been at it for 15 years. Most of the beer blogs that were around back then have given up. Around a dozen or so are still active. The simple answer is: because I enjoy it. Would I continue if I had no readers? Maybe. I'm perfectly happy to tootle along with a couple of hundred. Just as well, as I'm unlikely to attract many more with the sort of stuff I post.

Posting every day can be a chore. So why do it? Partly, just to make sure I keep posting. If I missed one day in a week, then maybe the next week I'd miss two. Before you know it, I'd be posting once every few weeks. (As an intrinsically bone-idle person, I'm a natural shirker.) It's also an incentive to keep working on my books. Which are my main focus. And inextricably entwined with my blog.

So I don't forget stuff is a dead important motive. That doesn't just cover historical trivia. My travels with the kid, too. Without the blog, I doubt I would have written as much about our trips. They'll be grateful I did, when they get older. And think: "Where fuck did I go with Dad on holiday?"

The first phase of my blog was writing about my research. A few years back, I'm not sure when, I moved over to mostly writing. The blog now records my progress. As I pester readers with half-written excerpts.

It may not look like it, but I do have a plan. Finishing the project I started almost two decades ago: A history of British beer 1700 to 1973. What were supposed to be chapters have ended up as books. I've polished off most of the 20th century:

1914-1920 Armistice!
1920-1940 Peace!
1939-1947 Blitzkrieg!
1945-1973 Austerity!

These are the volumes still to be written:

1880-1914 Free!

Hopefully, I'll live long enough to finish every volume.

That's enough of writing about writing. The most boring of topics. Makes a change from London Stout, though.


Mick said...

Don't stop blogging!
I check in every day, I love it all, including the trip reports. Keep it up Ron!

Happy New Year

boBcat said...

You can't stop it is part of my daily ritual now. I have learned so much about beer history, production and brewing. A lot of the knowledge that I acquired goes into every brew that I make. As they say in Britain "mind the gap". Those would be gaps in my knowledge.

Dan Klingman said...

We appreciate the effort, although I'm sure we don't know half of what you do, to bring us a little knowledge every day (well, most days). Thanks.

Anonymous said...

This stuff is great, even if I only understand a fraction.

Jeff Renner said...

What Mick said. Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

It's new magic in a dusty world, Ron.

A Brew Rat said...

I too greatly appreciate your blog. It's the only blog I read every day. As a homebrewer, your recipes have greatly improved my English ales. I have a 1.048 OG mild on tap now, 85% Fawcett Golden Promise, 15% Invert No.3, Clusters for bittering, Fuggles at the 30 minute mark, that is outstanding. Cheers to you, Ron, and your family and wishing you a safe and happy 2023!

Bribie G said...

Happy New Year and thanks for the blog.

Really looking forward to the post War period. I grew my beer gland in the late 60s and early 70s and hope to find out all the inner workings of classics like the legendary Worthington E..

We make E the way you like it
E's so easy
Goes down easy.

Frequently came up even easier after 8 pints!!

Anonymous said...

you write them daily and this is one of the ~10 sites i have in my daily check.

a month ago brewed a ~13% brown malt, 4% black malt porter after reading through several recipes posted here from various periods in the 19th century. frankly they need to create a name for this style and "1850s/1870s/1890s style porter" is too long and ive started saying "pattinson porter" for a porter with black malt, copious but varying quantities of brown malt and without crystal malt. often with sugar or invert.

the 35% brown malt in the most recent post made me laugh out loud, but as always im intrigued.

Happy new year Ron.

Chris Pickles said...

How many readers would like to see the saga continue after 1973, so we could follow the beers we used to drink in our younger days. I know it would be a big ask!

ts said...

I always look forward to the latest post. My only complaint is I can't keep up with "let's brew Wednesday", but my liver knows I try.

Anonymous said...

Love your blog. A lot of the brewing arcana goes over my head but I love the history anyway. I doubt I'm the only lurker who reads often but never comments. So this is just more encouragement to keep going. Not that it looks like you need it :)