The Flitwick club is a members only social club in Flitwick, which is near where I live. I am infact a member of this club, however you did not need to be last weekend because for two days it was open to the public to allow entry to its beer festival. It was the first beer festival at the club and they have started out small. In fact the choice was only ten beers and two ciders.

image The beers which were available were Hogg’s Back’s  HBB, W.J King’s Horsham Best, Long Man’s Long Blonde,Long Man’s Best Bitter,Skinner’s Betty Stoggs, Otter’s Amber,Hogg’s Back’s T.E.A, Exmoor’s Wild Cat, Exmoor’s Gold and Adnam’s Ghost Ship. The two ciders available were Weston’s First Quality Cider and Thatcher’s Cheddar Valley. On top of this the standard bar which is always at the club has two constantly rotating real ales, while the festival was on there was Jennings‘ Little Gem and St Austell’s Tribute. Not a huge choice, and some of the beers I have had before, but that’s not a bad thing. I personally would have liked to have a darker beer, a mild or a porter perhaps, but it wasn’t the end of the world.

The small number of beers there meant that I got to try everything which was on offer. I had planned to go down for a little while but as a friend said to me a few days later “Stay for a bit?!?!?!? Looke, You never left all day”. Yeah, oops.

image I first arrived just after lunchtime with Darren. We sat down for a few halves, during which time I realised that perhaps my drinking in this town was getting a bit too much. Myself and Darren were sitting at a table with our drinks, paying no attention to the others at the bar when a gentleman in his thirties approached us. In his hand he had a half of what was clearly cheddar valley cider (if you’ve ever seen it you’ll know what I mean, the colour is extraordinary) and in his other he had another glass with a taster in it of the same. “Excuse me, are you the cider drinker”. I looked at my glass and the Adnams Ghost Ship that was in it. I tried to think of something witty to say but ended up saying “errrr… I do drink cider, yes”. The man handed me the taster and asked me if it was “alright”, I explained that it was the dry version of Cheddar Valley and so unlike most commercial cider isn’t sweet and can indeed taste like it did. The man thanked me and left us to continue our drinks. I couldn’t help but think over his choice of words though “the cider drinker”. I didn’t think I drunk that much cider these days but clearly I’ve started to gain a reputation. I know I have had Cheddar valley before , but I’m not sure if that it is a good thing or not.

On the whole I would say that Flitwick beer festival was very good for a small event. I even overcame my trepidation about Betty Stoggs, which I now can only conclude was off at every other pub I’ve drunk it in and is actually rather fine. All the beers were in good condition and all were very good choices to stock. Hopefully they will build on this for next year, can’t wait.