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Beer vs. Wine

A spokesman for a major British brewing company was feeling combatative when he was interviewed by the BBC on the degree to which wine is infringing on beer's place in Britain's alcohol consumption.
"I have seen the odd occasion where I have walked into a pub and seen a man drinking a glass of wine," he says. "I find that totally unacceptable."

Many British women (among others) are partial to cider, "girly" cocktails, and the odd glass of wine. I was always teased for ordered mixed drinks over there, since I have no taste for beer. (A Real Woman would have ordered beer, just one of the guys.) The spokesman was clearly trying to reinforce the manly image that beer has to some degree in Britain. This smacks of real desperation to me, caused by loss of market share. If the industry was doing reasonably well, the spokeman might have cared more about what the women in the pub were drinking as well.

Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
owlfish
Nov. 3rd, 2004 04:08 pm (UTC)
Good. I am delighted to know that men of your acquaintance are doing their part to support the presence of wine in the UK (I presume.) If the UK regularly had better ciders, that might get in on the competition too.

I spent much of my day reading about the rousing medical properties of wine according to ancient Roman and medieval sources. From than angle, it sure sounds like a manly drink to me.
suslikuk
Nov. 4th, 2004 01:14 am (UTC)
I like a good glass of red; the chiantis are currently chosen over the merlots, following an informal boycott of French products. (Not for reasons of international diplomacy, I hasten to add, merely because of my brother's ex-gf...) But it's almost impossible to get a drinkable glass of wine in pubs. The bottle has usually been open for most of the day, and the wine isn't great to start with.

Nevertheless, I avoid beer because it's hard enough keeping my waistline in check as it is.

lazyknight
Nov. 4th, 2004 01:54 am (UTC)
To me, it sounds as though he's whining ('s'cuse the pun) simply because interbrewery's profits might be hurt.

Have a look at: http://www.camra.org.uk/SHWebClass.asp?WCI=ShowCat&CatId=11#CAMRASuccess (it's not all bad news for beer, or rather ale -- the number of small breweries and real ale pubs is growing year on year)

Also take a look at http://www.camra.org.uk/SHWebClass.asp?WCI=ShowCat&CatId=473 -- beer with food is, so far as I'm concerned perfectly fine. Tends to depend what it is, of course -- I wouldn't have a pint of Broadside with salmon, but it's ideal for steak (actually, Fraoch might be good with salmon... *muses*)

There are various movements to get cider the same re-generation that Real Ale benefited from in th 80's -- after all, at one point pretty much every farm in somerset and wiltshire and so on was producing large volumes of cider (of varying quality) for the farm workers...
owlfish
Nov. 4th, 2004 06:38 am (UTC)
It's his job to whine. He was funny though, although probably unintentionally. It reminds me that one of Terry Pratchett's first careers was as a spokesperson for the nuclear industry.

I'm glad that smaller breweries are doing better in the UK, especially since it is hopefully bringing greater variety to pubs. One of this year's Julia Child cookbook award winning books was an American entry all about choosing a beer to accompany any meal.

I would love to British cider to improve. Strangely, I learned to drink cider in Britain, but I didn't learn to love it until I came to Canada and tried some of the amazing British Columbia ciders. My problem with cider is that I prefer it when it tastes of apples, which Strongbow - the dominant player both there and here - doesn't. That said, I don't mind Scrumpy Jack as much as Strongbow, so maybe it's the strange chemicalness of Strongbow I object to.
lazyknight
Nov. 4th, 2004 06:49 am (UTC)
The Cider Problem
The cider problem in the UK boils down to the loss (I wonder if they've looked behind the sofa?) of all our wonderful, wonderful apple orchards. Barely a summer goes past but we hear on the news of the ever increasing decline of in the numbers of English apple varieties...
aerinah
Nov. 4th, 2004 08:06 am (UTC)
They'd probably kick me out of the pub. Cause I'd be ordering diet Coke.

It sucks getting migraines from alcohol. *pout*
owlfish
Nov. 4th, 2004 08:20 am (UTC)
Nahhh. Just means you're an inexpensive date.
lazyknight
Nov. 5th, 2004 01:19 am (UTC)
Hmm... I've ordered a pint of diet coke in a pub over here and been charged more for that than for the pint of beer I was having...
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )