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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
roopoo What exactly IS Nottingham Ale? (48) RE: What exactly IS Nottingham Ale? 08 May 01

Interesting you mention France, as Nottingham was full of French a couple of centuries ago, around the Lacemarket area. I think my mum told me that's what probably started the lace industry. Maybe that's where the style of the beer came from! The city was once, much further back, also divided into the Norman town and the Anglo-Danish town which each had their own councils in the Mont and Moot halls respectively. One of the halls used to be near the corner where (in my youth) H.Samuels was, at the top of Wheeler Gate, where it joined the square. The other was somewhere up the hill at the back of where the council house now is, I believe, and just on the edge of the Lacemarket (I think). Of course they each had separate markets too, and a wall had to be built down the middle of the square to keep them from killing each other on market days. It came down in the early 18th century.

Mansfield Ale is definitely not Nottingham Ale - it's about 15 miles north of Nottingham! When keg was all you could get in some places, their "5-Star" p*ss/keg was usually better than the other local offerings. I suppose when the breweries were established at Daybrook and Basford, they had already been encompassed by the city boundary. Basford isn't that far from the city centre, really.

The first beer I ever tasted was keg Home mild, and it was really warm too. That was in 1967, when I was 15, and it put me off beer for years. Then I met Ian who, as a poor student, refused to buy the stuff I usually had (Babycham or Cinzano), and started me on bottled Shippo's IPA, and then graduated me onto Shippo's bitter. I then tried Home Ales, and found I definitely liked Shippo's better.

Although it's not in the city, Kimberley brewery has always been consistent. They supplied Black Sheep brewery with the Yorkshire squares (and yeast, I believe) which is why, when I first tried Black Sheep, I thought how much it was like Kimberley bitter!


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