Sunday, 16 December 2012


The mere mention of keg beer is more than likely to raise a few eyebrows. It will always be a contentious issue and likely to get you embroiled in to a heated debate!

However, as regards to this subject, I am of the opinion that some real ale drinkers are perhaps still harping back to those dark days of the seventies, when the keg campaign was trying to bash cask conditioned beer into submission. And are letting it cloud their judgement.

Yes, I can understand the resentment to a degree. But I am always a little dismayed nowadays, when people still say to me that they will only ever drink beer from a hand pump. And quite simply refuse to try some of the craft keg beers, that are now available in today's market .

I came across one such beer recently. And it was a delightful quaff. The keg beer in question was Naylor's 'Silver Bullet'. It had just gone on at my local, and the owner was keen for my verdict on the tipple.

As the beer was being pulled, I got a typical comment from an older real ale drinker. He said,''You will never get me supping from anything other than a hand pump.'' A typical blinkered view, in my opinion. Others may say, 'beer snobbery'!

The beer was refreshing and zesty. It had a flavour of mango and grapefruit. A fruity bitterness, that left you with a refreshing, zesty hopped finish in the aftertaste. Flavours that you expect from the cascade and perle hops, that are used in the brewing process.

I felt the beer was a kind of 'transitional ale'. A half way house between a premium lager and a cask condition pale/golden ale. A beer that could quite easily entice a lager drinker to sway towards cask conditioned pale beers.

It would have been very interesting to have said to a staunch real ale drinker:''Here, have a taste of this refreshing, zesty fruit flavoured beer. It's a delicious pale ale''. And then waited for the verdict. Of course, not divulging it was a keg beer!    

No, perhaps not. That would have been a touch sneaky, and a little unfair.  

Naylor's, as you probably know, have a great range of cask conditioned beers. And the West Yorkshire brewer's venture into the production of keg beer, has already seen success with their debut 'Bullet' keg. It picked up an award at the UK Craft Kegged Beer competition recently. I have no doubt the 'Silver Bullet' will prove equally as successful.

Aye, it was good to try a quality keg beer. It is seldom I venture down this road. It certainly did not disappoint. A nice, refreshing change indeed.