ʽʽHi, I’m Benjamin Nunn – critic, gourmand and author of Ben Viveur. I like to eat and drink. And cook. And write.

You might have read me in an in-flight magazine, or a beer publication, but here on my own blog I'm liberated from the editorial shackles of others so anything goes.

I deal with real food and drink in the real world, aiming to create recipes that taste awesome, but which can be created by mere mortals without the need for tons of specialist equipment and a doctorate in food science. Likewise, I tend to review relaxed establishments that you might visit on a whim without having to sell your first-born, rather than hugely expensive restaurants and style bars in the middle of nowhere with a velvet rope barrier, a stringent dress code and a six-month waiting list!

There's plenty of robust opinion, commentary on the world of food and drink, and lots of swearing, so look away now if you're easily offended.

Otherwise, tuck your bib in, fill your glass and turbo-charge your tastebuds. We're going for a ride... Ben Appetit!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

5000 not out!

I reached a big beer milestone last night - 5000 different real ales since I started counting!

The beer itself - Atlantic 'Gold' in the Catford Bridge Tavern - was pretty much of a muchness: a 4.6% golden ale with the (not overwhelming) addition of ginger.

But that's not the point. (The point is I'm fucking great; Go me!!!)

OK, I know that there are plenty of tickers who have reached 10,000, 20,000 and more. I met an old guy recently who was claiming a tally somewhere north of 35,000.

But I don't feel particularly despondent in the face of any such cock-waving because very few of these tickers insist on having a full pint of each beer. Most drink halves or thirds and some count a beer even if they just have a tiny sip of the stuff.

Furthermore, there are quite a few people who count keg, bottled and maybe even canned beers in addition to real ales.

One small sip for Ben...
I don't keep track of these, but if I included all of these in my records I'd be (guestimately) around the 6500 mark, and higher still if I included everything I tried before I started counting (back in 1996) but haven't had since.

Hundreds and Thousands

It's only really been in the last few years that I've really upped my game. Time was when I'd go weeks without getting any new beers at all, drinking the same old beers over and over. Sometimes not very good beers either.

Last night's big milestone came exactly 364 days after my 4000th, so 1000 in a year is pretty good by any standards.

To put this in context, My 3000th was in January 2010, my 2000th was about six years ago, and my 1000th was way back in 2001!

I'm still not as obsessive about it as some.

Last week I met a few 'normal' friends for a drink. The beer selection was rubbish so I just drank London Pride all evening.

When we got off the plane on Sunday after flying back from Moscow the first thing on my mind was to grab a couple of pints in the Gatwick Wetherspoons.

No ticks there, but a cool pint of Dark Star Hophead in surprisingly ace condition went down superbly. I wasn't about to walk out and go in search of a pub with 'winners'. (I did get several later in the evening having slaked my post-flight thirst though.)

So, well done Ben! And if you want to see my beer records up close in all their massive glory or were just wondering what my 3333rd pint was or what I was drinking on Boxing Day 2004 - go right ahead

I'll blog about the food and drink in Moscow in the next couple of days. Maybe when I've got to 5010 pints...

1 comment:

Comments are always welcomed and encouraged, especially interesting, thought-provoking contributions and outrageous suggestions.