Tuesday 17 February 2009

Belated Update

Morning all, well firstly apologies for being away for a while, the need to organise big events in one's life can become all consuming!

I'm having a bit of a Radio 4 moment this morning, with a thought for the day, after being send a quote by Kaiser Wilhelm, which states: "Give me a woman who loves beer and I will conquer the world."

So, if I'd been born about 100 hundred years ago (presuming it was KW the Second who said this) I could have been Grand High Empress & Supreme Poohbah of the Entire Globe! How awesome would that have been?!

Okay, so it's a reach but I'm just getting over yet another cold this winter and am feeling terribly upbeat - but I do also have a confession.

I'm afraid at the Malcolm Gluck Guardian showdown I probably didn't do beer as many favours as I could have.

That said, he did come utterly determined to run the room and deride beer at every available turn, which I do feel was a complete waste of the whole exercise that left quite a sour taste in the mouth.

He has come under a lot of fire from various camps and, having met the guy, he wasn't Satan himself, just a misogynistic dinosaur who is clearly intelligent but uses it more for spite than to disseminate knowledge - and I found it dreadfully depressing that he couldn't actually be anything other than obnoxious about beer until all the people had left the room and (initially I believe) thought the cameras weren't rolling.

What I mean by that is what you see at the end of the film, where he admits that the Thornbridge Alliance aged in Pedro Ximinez casks is delicious (which it is - one of the best beers I've tasted in years but the Madeira cask just squeaks past it in my book - buy them quickly!)

But for the rest of the time, without actually turning into some sort of screaming harridan and talking over him every five minutes, I had not a chance to counter-act his consistent desire not to share the room with someone else - you see I don't think it was a wine vs. beer thing, I think it was a limelight thing and as far as he was concerned it was all his.

So, to all you beer drinkers that feel let down by this piece, I apologise - and I'm kicking myself that this should have been a much more spirited display.

But the honest truth is that I wasn't going to let myself down by lowering my behaviour standards to the level of outright rudeness in a fruitless attempt to prove a narrow-minded man wrong.

I hope you understand...

This post promotes a v-blog job I did for the Guardian.


The man at the bar said...

Umm…. I think you have somewhat played into Miss Gluck’s hands. Like so many self appointed connoisseurs of fermented grape juice, Miss Gluck is a walking ego that believes taste and refinement is the preserve of an elite few. Beer drinking to her is the grubby dim-witted choice of the unwashed working classes - or at least that’s how it appears. Anyway the next time aunty Gluck makes a derogatory comment about beer or beer drinkers, do the one thing that is guaranteed to get up her hairy nostrils and ignore it. For the way to hurt such people is not to give them a platform - which is what they are after – but to rise above such snobbish, pomposity. Trust me on this, silence can be deafening sometimes.
P.S. one more thing. Please, please, all you beer enthusiasts out there; don’t surround yourself with the same snotty attitude and poncey language to beer that Miss Gluck shows towards fermented grape stuff, it will work against you in the end.

Mark Dredge said...

Good try Melissa, I think that even if they'd have been the finest combinations ever tasted he would've found complaint and ways to shun them. Beer may not have come out the winner but the old wineo Gluck certainly came out as the sadsack, unsexy loser!

Bracia and Alliance are world class beers.

Anonymous said...

Mate, it's the Guardian...it's their raison d'être to be pissy, supercilious & self-righteous about absolutely everything.

Worry not.

Hope your other half is a happy bunny at present. A glass of tepid Chang has never tasted so good!!!! :)

Tim said...

It's not the end of the world. Gluck's haircut is as representative of the wine world as beards are of the beer world. I mean, they are often the spoken minority.

I have to argue with Gluck's arguments that wine goes excellent with spices and spicy food. In general spice like flavours in wine turn into paint stripper and solvent with the first sign of heat. I don't think that Gluck really knows what he is talking about.

Kieran Haslett-Moore said...

I think guys like this are better ignored. Taking them on just gives them the chance to grandstand.

Anonymous said...

Nothing that ponce is about these days could be considered what Basil Fawlty (another pseudy snob) called the 'boudoir of the grape'.

He's peddling lifestyle, aspiration and colour-supplement wank fodder. Fair enough...

Melissa Cole said...

Hindsight is 20:20 and, in retrospect, I don't think I'd bother trying to deal with an attitude like that again - however I don't regret trying, it's prompted a lot of talk and hopefully has prompted the Guardian/Observer to see that the readership really is interested in beer - those posts had more comments than nearly any others that have been up.

Thanks for everyone's supportive comments and honest feedback.

p.s. Stuey, the other half was on his way back from his stag weekend in Munich so I think Monday was less a Changover & more straight alcohol poisoning I think!

Anonymous said...

It does annoy me that The Times etc etc has a regular wine column but not a regular beer column. Beer is a traditional industry here in the UK, why don't they back it instead of writing about a foreign import.

Shey said...

As you said, hindsight is 20:20. How often does one review a situation and think..."I should have said that!" You went against Gluck and attempted to put your point across to someone who wasn't really listening to you, and wasn't ready to have their mind opened. I don't think you had a chance to open up a reasonable debate.
The good thing that came from it is that the movie will be seen by many, with you coming across as someone who wants a discussion, and he as a closed minded sod. All the more power to us beer drinkers!

Anonymous said...

Good God what a hideous man!
Sorry because this episode has all come to my attention about a million years late, but I think I have to have some words all the same. All I can say is thank Christ for people like you and The Protz.
As a genuine wine lover, it makes me sad to see such a narrow minded man, like Gluck, representing such a wonderful and varied drink.
As a genuine beer lover, it makes me angry to see such a pompous overblown arse using bluster and condescension to conveniently ignore anyone else's argument, and to casually dismiss a wonderful and varied drink.
The man is a bit of an idiot really, creating conflict where there doesn't need to be one. I have to say, however, his sense of humour is clearly first class: calling beer drinkers unsexy sadsack losers after looking in the mirror shows a wry wit that is extremely rare. Upon seeing Gluck in action on this video, Clooney and Pitt are reportedly "unconcerned" at this challenge to their "Worlds Sexiest" status.
PS This is a great blog - you're making me feel guilty that I spend so much time taking the piss on my own site that I forget to review most of the beer!