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Never mind the “Great Rock and Roll Swindle”, this is a con to beat the best, so dodgy it puts del boy trotter to shame and Arthur Daley look like a regular geezer, why? – Read on…
‘So good the Danes hate to see it leave’? Well it doesn’t have very far to travel to be honest as most of the stuff we get was brewed here in the UK, and has never seen Denmark.
The fantasy is that this is brewed in an ancient brewery nestled in the hills of Copenhagen, from the finest quality Dutch hops, pure Scandinavian spring water, by skilled craftsmen gently sipping each pint as it comes off the production line, to ensure quality, and pleasure.
J.C.Jacobsen, the founder of Carlsberg, began his career as a brewer in his father’s small brewery in the middle of Copenhagen. With the desire and ambition to set up his own brewery, J.C. Jacobsen found a location on a hill in the village of Valby, just outside Copenhagen, with lots of light, fresh air, clean water and plenty of space. Here he founded Carlsberg, named after his five-year-old son, Carl and the Danish word for hill, berg.
Following a disagreement with his son years later over the expansion of this independent brewery, J.C. Jacobsen suggested that his son establish his own brewery, which Carl did. In 1881, Ny Carlsberg (New Carlsberg) was inaugurated and Carlsberg is brewed on the same site in Denmark today. This is where we are led to believe our beer comes from.
It’s a nice story, a bit clogs and cuckoo clocks but it lends an image of snow capped mountains, nice and authentic, and gives the impression of product integrity, a value added product, something continental, slightly more sophisticated, and worth just that little bit more, a few more pence to set you apart from the crowd.
Image-conscious British drinkers are prepared to pay for the pleasure of premium lagers from abroad. But that pint of exotic beer is more than likely to be home brew.
We have all seen the recent TV advert with the truck drivers, being abducted, by angry locals, who hate to see us pillaging their Danish culture.
There is also a spoof advert on the website which reads “We currently have a desperate shortage of drivers to transport a premium lager from its homeland in Denmark to thirsty drinkers all over the world. Our lawyers have informed us to mention upfront that a degree of confrontation/incarceration/and extreme physical violence may be encountered by the locals who, it seems hate to see such an important part of Danish heritage leave. Prospects aren’t great but dramatically improve if you make it over the border”.
My lawyers have informed ME that this advert contains nothing but Twaddle, and which border are they talking about? The Northamptonshire border presumably, unless I am mistaken, the Vikings left east midlands some centuries ago and the only the only Danish culture in Northampton is THIS lager. The people attacking the truck are more likely to be Cobblers (Northampton FC Fans) than Vikings, which is appropriate because this advert is nothing but a load of Cobblers.
Carlsberg UK Limited (formerly Carlsberg-Tetley Brewing Limited) was formed in 1993 as a joint venture between Allied Lyons and Carlsberg A/S. Then in 1997 Carlsberg A/S took complete control of Carlsberg-Tetley. In March 2004 Carlsberg-Tetley changed its name to Carlsberg UK, to reflect its closer alignment with its parent company Carlsberg Breweries A/S. Carlsberg Breweries is now the fifth largest brewing group in the world. With breweries throughout the UK, this is where our gargle comes from.
Thus the Carlsberg Export - tagline "so good the Danes hate to see it leave" – is also Cobblers, brewed in Northampton, a far cry from Copenhagen.
Japan's Kirin, India's Cobra and Jamaica's Red Stripe are all produced in Bedford.
Stella Artois is made in south Wales. The all-American brew Budweiser and the quintessential Irish drop Guinness are both produced in London, in Mortlake and Park Royal respectively.
Scottish and Newcastle, makes Kronenbourg 1664 in Reading, where it also produces the Australian bevvie, Fosters.
“Less than a tenth of the beer drunk in the UK is imported”, Mark Hastings of the British Beer and Pub Association. He also commented in a recent BBC article: “All are made to exacting standards - sometimes under the watchful eye of a master brewer from the country of origin - to ensure that the finished product is as close to the original as possible. Brewers may import the hops, malt and yeast; and the water, which makes up 95% of beer, is treated to match that in the country of origin”. – some excuse.
I like this lager because although it is a bit gassy for my liking as a general rule, the flavour is mellow and well balanced and the alcohol content at 5% is not too strong but just a bit more than your average cheap tinny of Fosters. I don’t like super strong lagers like Tenants or even Carlsberg Special Brew, which are mostly aimed at the vagabond and pikey market anyway. This lies in the hinterland between yer piddle weak Fosters and yer mind- numbing ‘Specials’…just right.
Draught Volume (ml) 568 Alcohol units 2.8
Cans Volume (ml) 500 Alcohol units 1.4
Bottles Volume (ml) 550 Alcohol units 3.3
The Department of Health advises that men should now drink no more than 3-4 units of alcohol per day, and women should drink no more than 2-3 units of alcohol per day. These daily benchmarks apply whether you drink every day, once or twice a week, or occasionally.
The main reason I like it so much is that it is on special offer at ‘Jacko’s (Jackson’s supermarket) this week, eight tins for £6.50. It varies in price, but I wouldn’t pay more than £1.20 a can even from an off-licence.
It’s a nice quality lager and would not be ashamed to offer it to anyone, who came round for a few bevies, however I would admire honesty, a bit more than this constant hoodwinking by the brewers, if it’s quality, it will stand up for itself, no need for chicanery. It leaves a bit of a sour taste in my mouth, when I see it on the shelves for a bargain price, get ‘em home and discover it’s NOT QUITE WHAT IT SAYS ON THE TIN, if I may be allowed to mix my metaphors and TV adverts tee, hee. I’m not bitter LOL, and I enjoy the product, but I’ve moved on to Newcastle Brown Ale at the mo, as a tipple of choice or ‘dog’ as they call it up there, at least I know it has been made by a load of sweaty Geordies, BEFORE I drink it, and not after, or was it? Perhaps was it made in Copenhagen…?