Sunday 14 August 2011

SA Gold – Brains Brewery

Last Thursday I treated myself and The Lovely Jemma to a visit to the Everyman cinema in Islington to see Super 8. I've always been a bit wary of Everymans in the past. They are a chain of upmarket cinemas with a choice of sitting on sofas or comfy chairs. There's also a bar selling alcoholic treats that you can take to your seat. Although this sounds lovely in theory, I always imagined it would come off a bit wanky as these type of things in London inevitably do. Another risk with nice places in London, especially Islington, is that they might be full of twats. But this time I decided to take a punt. Did it pay off? I've been told to add more dramatic tension to my blog so you'll have to wait until after the next couple of paragraphs to find out.

Before going to the cinema we stopped into the Steam Passage Tavern next door for a warm up beer. This is a Brains establishment. Brains is a Welsh brewery who do a large variety of ales and are often at the Great British Beer Festival. Incidentally I went on a coal mining holiday in Wales once. Never again – it was the pits. I opted for a pint of SA Gold. This is the newest Brains beer launched in 2006. It was a pleasurable and refreshing golden ale, although I suspect it was not being kept in peak condition. The hoppy taste was there but it felt a little flat. I'd be willing to give it another chance, perhaps at a different pub where it is better kept.

The Steam Passage Tavern itself was a perfectly serviceable pub but with not much character. There were TV's showing music videos, and the music played in the pub was actually matching the videos! Nothing annoys me more when a music video is on but the music playing is completely different, especially when it's a decent song playing on the TV. The sight of seeing The Who on the telly while the Black Eyed Peas are playing on the speakers is depressing on a incomprehensible amount of levels. It also gets a bit baffling after a few pints when you're trying to work out why Roger Daltrey is singing about his lovely lady lumps.

After the pint it was off to the cinema. Luckily it turned out that my fears about the Everyman were unfounded. The experience was lovely and the only twats in the cinema (apart from me) left the film about 45 minutes in. Super 8 itself was a good effort. The film is director J .J Abrams love letter to Spielberg, and boy does it show. Even the film poster is a charming hand drawn effort reminiscent of Spielberg's 80's classics. As for the film itself, although Abrams did a great job emulating Spielberg, it felt like a facsimile. It was missing the heart and sense of wonder (and sometimes fear) Spielberg nailed in his 80's classics. Overall it was a fun film and the personalities of the child actors carried a sometimes weak script a long way.

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