Birmingham Beer Week is in 2019 entering its third year and whilst each year’s calendar is packed full of top class events, there are always the ones that got away. So we started looking through that long list of ideas that couldn’t come to fruition due to time constraints or other concerns. There in the middle of that fated list was simply the word “DEBATE”, in our eyes the perfect opportunity that had floundered on several occasions before that we still felt had something to add to the overall calendar for 2019. So with this in mind (and with Education in beer being a core value of Birmingham Beer Week) we set about researching what makes for a great event centred around beer that would both educate and inform.
In recent memory there have been some fantastic beer education events that have continued to leave a lasting impression on us. Not least the granddaddy of them all that took place at IndyManBeerCon 2012 which asked a simple question of its assembled panel “What the hell is craft beer?“. Right the through to the amazingly well put together Beavertown Symposiums at the Beavertown Extravaganza 2017. So when it came time to put together our own debate for Birmingham Beer Week 2019 we started by looking for people from the Midlands area that could help us to deliver an educational debate that would fit central to our ambitions for 2019. But who?
Enter Brett Laniosh…
A member of the British Beer Writers Guild and consultant to the beer industry at large. From the outset our chosen Master of Ceremonies Brett has been incredibly supportive of our plans, and has helped immensely with the logistics and ensuring we set the right tone. Brett’s background in educational consultancy and close ties to both CAMRA and SIBA have been invaluable in putting on The Birmingham Beer Debate this year. Brett has also helped immensely in putting together a panel of industry experts that we are incredibly proud of.
Now of course being Master of Ceremonies for The Birmingham Beer Debate in no way excuses Brett from answering questions so we put a few off the cuff ones to him, just to keep him on his toes…
Q1: What is your earliest and most fond memory of beer?
The aroma of beer hit my senses as an 8 year old growing up in South West Birmingham where Arthur the Davenports driver used to deliver ‘beer at home’ to my grandfather. He would give me a lift on the back of his lorry where I would sit on crates of Davenports beer. That wouldn’t happen now!
Q2: You find yourself marooned on a dessert island, with access to unlimited amounts of one beer. Which one is it and why?
That is difficult as I like a wide variety of beer styles. I am a fan of unfiltered cans and bottle conditioned beers from St Austell (Proper Job, Proper Black, Big Job, Italian Job), Cantillon (Kriek), Wye Valley (Wholesome Stout) and Verhaeghe’s Duchesse de Bourgogne. If I could only choose one, it would have to be Cotswold Lion’s Golden Fleece, a 4.4% balanced beer with a lovely floral citrus flavour.
Q3: As a educational consultant working with the beer industry, what is the one most important point of education that you feel is necessary to communicate to consumers?
There are a lot of drinkers out there who say they don’t like beer but simply haven’t explored the wonderful world of beer that is available. I’d ask them to try a range of beer styles, see which ones they like and then have a whole lot of fun on a journey of discovery. I would also I’d encourage them to give feedback about their beer especially if it isn’t up to scratch.
Full details of for The Birmingham Beer Debate and ticketing information can be found here