Camden Helles & Pale; A Tale of Superstition

'CPA', as I like to call it

I do like superstitions and routine, and one that I have firmly lodged in my mind is that my first beer in The Euston Tap simply has to be a Camden -Just because that’s the place my addled mind associates them with. It was I first tried them and so far, it’s worked. If I ever have anything else there, it won’t feel right.

Damn you, routine.

I’ve got to admit, I’m a massive fan of the guys down at Camden. Not only do they make good beer – they make my kind of beer. Clean, crispy Pales, perfect for sunny drinking or banishing the dust from the throat and ridding the fatigue of a hectic afternoon riding the tube. Now that they are well-established bottle-wise, it just means I can enjoy thier beers all year round.

Both Helles (4.6%abv) and Pale (4.5%) are simple beers, well executed. Take your time over them and there’s more subtlety than meets the eye; and both remain stupidly easy to drink. Pale pours a vibrant gold with a tight, ice-white head, those bubbles zooming up the glass and dying in the head with a reassuring fizz. Fresh Grapefruit on the nose; and the body is ever-so-slightly grainy. It finishes dry, and surprisingly bitter. It’s not too sweet, not too bitter – perfectly poised, and wonderful bottled. One of the best Pales about? In my opinion, yes, but you can probably guess from the paragraph above that I’ve got a real love affair with Camden Pale.

Highway to Helles

Helles is even paler, but sports the same brilliant white head. There’s a much more herbal, more noble-hop prescence on the nose, and the body is much softer and sweeter than the Pale. The finish is softly citric (a hint of Peach, maybe?) and moreish. Again, a wonderful, simple beer that I could drink way too fast if I put my mind to it.

In a perfect world, my go-to beer fridge is well stocked with Camden’s wares. Football, a couple of these and some good snackage. Heaven.

If you’re interested, another beery superstition I have is Old Peculier on Christmas Day – it has to be the last beer of the day, no mater how much I’ve imbibed beforehand. Do you have any Beer routines you’d like to share?


About leighgoodstuff

Blog: I'm Leigh Linley; born and bred in Leeds, and writing about it since 2005. TGS exists solely to highlight the great beers that are out there; brewed with passion by Craft Brewers around the World. I also edit the 'Tavern Tales' section of Culture Vulture, which looks at Pubs and Pub Life rather than the beer in the glass.

Posted on 22/09/2011, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I find it very hard in a decent Fuller’s or Harvey’s not to have one of each. (Especially the Royal Oak in the autumn, where you can work through five session-strength beers and finish with a Harvey’s Imperial Stout.)

  2. I’m not sure if I have any drinking superstitions… Christmas day always starts with a strong stout but that’s more of a coffee replacement than anything else.

    I do have non-beer superstitions, however. One is that I have to put my left shoe on before my right shoe. The same with socks. When I played cricket it was always left first and then right. No idea why.

  3. A lot of Footballers do that, Mark – put thier kit/boots on in specific orders.

  4. I always drink Jaipur if it’s on. My first drink at the Ship & Mitre in Liverpool is always Edelstoff. My last drink on Christmas Eve is always Orval. I always drink Stella at the golf club. I never drink lager after gueze.

    • Is the Lager after Gueze just a rule for your constitution? That’s an interesting one! I find it hard sometimes to go from dark to light beers, full stop, without getting wrecked. I’ve always got to start of light and finish dark. Like the Orval thing!

  5. No superstitious behaviour here, although I fancy starting something going for Christmas… More of tradition in my case rather than a superstition? either way I’m going do it.

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