It's fresh. That's ... why we like Real Ale!
Beer brewed from traditional ingredients, matured by secondary fermentation in the container from which it is dispensed, and served without the use of extraneous carbon dioxide.
The Oxford Companion to Beer
In the photo, the bartender is pulling a lovely pint from a cask of Loose Cannon Hop3 IPA, brewed by Heavy Seas Brewing, of Baltimore, Maryland, (then known as Clipper City Brewing). She is using a hand-operated piston pump —known as a beer engine— to pull the ale directly from the cask without the assist of any compressed gas, such as carbon dioxide or nitrogen. That's ... Real Ale!
The Festival is co-sponsored by the Pratt Street Alehouse and by the Chesapeake branch of the Society for the Preservation of Beer from the Wood, SPBW, for short.
The parent organization of the SPBW is located in the United Kingdom. It was founded in 1963, when most cask-conditioned ales were still drawn from wooden casks. Today, most casks are constructed of stainless steel.
The Baltimore, Maryland based branch of the SPBW is one of the few that is active outside of the UK, and it is the only one found in the US. It was founded in the 1990s by Joe Gold, who is also a co-founder of Baltimore Beer Week.
This year's Chesapeake Real Ale Festival also features a panel discussion on cask ale the hour before the festival begins, which I'll be moderating. Details: here. Tickets and more information are available at the website: prattstreetalefest.com.
- The web address for the Baltimore, Maryland, SPBW is spbw.ORG, whereas, for the parent organization in the UK, it's spbw.COM.
- UPDATE: Photos from the 2011 Chesapeake Real Ale Festival: here.
- Caveat lector: As a representative for Select Wines, Inc. —a wine and beer wholesaler in northern Virgina— I sell the beers of Heavy Seas.
- Pic(k) of the Week: one in a weekly series of personal photos, posted on Saturdays, and often, but not always, with a good fermentable as subject.Commercial use requires explicit permission, as per Creative Commons.