There’s a short article over at The Age mapping the decline of the big Australian beers as a failure of their marketing. Their reason for the fall from grace of VB and Carlton:
Image is also one of the reasons why there has been strong growth in mainstream craft beers such as James Squire, Little Creatures and Matilda Bay.
”Boutique beers tend to be more expensive because it reflects the cost of production, and that tends to be associated with people with higher disposable income. So it’s a badge of wealth, status,” says Kirkegaard. ”But like a niche wine, it also shows a higher level of discernment.”
For The Age, how a beer tastes doesn’t seem to come into it. The failure of big beers in Australia may have less to do with them presenting a credible image of themselves than them presenting a product which does not taste good. Substituting in a faux import like Carlsberg or Heineken for a local trash pilsener because the former has a more positive image does not seem like a long term marketing strategy.
Matt Kirkegaard (quoted above) also blogs over at BeerMatt and even the most cursory read of his work will point out that he knows that there is more to beer than image alone.
If you were going to split beer enthusiasts into two broad churches, one would worship the malt and yeast characters in beers made by actual monks; the other would worship hops and flee to the New World, or more specifically, Portland, Oregon.
As for the site of Armageddon, neither party would have picked New Zealand, from whence this beer came. It is certainly the American, hop-filled vision of the end times rather than one imagined by Trappists.
Epic says: “In the beginning, there was nothing. Then an impish brewer piled a ludicrous amount of hops into a batch of beer. This zymurgical big bang is Epic Armageddon, an apocalyptic assault on your preconceptions and taste buds. It may be too huge for this fragile planet so enjoy this beer like it was the last one on Earth”
I say: Pours a orange-copper color. The aroma is hops, the flavour is hoppy to the point of being oily and resinous; pine forest and orange. No maltiness or any other character, just hops, which amply conceals the 6.66% alcohol punch. The finish is bitter. It’s unbalanced just like a good India pale ale should be.
After deliberating over food blog templates for a good six months, I’ve decided just to make a change to the layout completely on a whim rather than putting in the hard work of redesigning the site. My only gripe with the previous template was the way that it treated short posts – you’d have no idea of the length (or necessarily content) of a post when you hit the home page. This acted as a deterrent to me throwing forth random, short and poorly thought out posts which are the grist for any blogger’s dark satanic mill.
It’s probably still packed full of delicious bugs. Enjoy!
Image via Serving Sake to a Serb
Loc Lac (as I’ve talked about before) is one of those dishes in Cambodia that has no authentic version but multitude variations – pretty much any dish which has a primary component of cubed, stir-fried beef fits the bill, which can be fried with anything insofar as it remains brownish.
At the Australian Food Blogger Conference yesterday, Michael from My Aching Head mentioned the process of moving a blog from Blogspot/Blogger to WordPress. I’ve had to do this three times over the past few years for friends.
Here is the step by step process for moving a blog from Blogspot to WordPress. It does require some very basic editing of your blog template and a file in WordPress, but the gigantic bonus is that you get to maintain all of the incoming links to every page from your old blog.
Here is an example of it in action:
- Go to http://realthai.blogspot.com/2008/02/ayuthaya-again.html
- It will redirect to http://www.austinbushphotography.com/2008/02/ayuthaya-again.html (check the URL bar in your web browser.)
What is the point of swallowing the last 10 years of Hanoi food writing from U.S. magazines, visiting said city for a holiday-come-assignment, talking to the self same people you’ve read about in those U.S. magazines and spewing 2,129 words of uninspired, unoriginal, factually inaccurate, poop out the orifice of an American printing press at the other end? I dunno, but maybe the editors at The Smithsonian can tell us.
It’s worth taking a look over at Noodlepie as Graham Holliday eviscerates the latest steamy gut-pile of parachute journalism on Hanoian phở. I’m still amazed that there is a market for articles where the journalists interview just the “cultural translators” – those handy English-speaking experts who can be relied on for a pithy quote – rather than the people who cook the dish on a daily basis.
There are two generations of Vietnamese restaurants in Footscray, Melbourne. The first emulates the tile-and-mirror-walled, cheap metal table joints of the streets of Saigon. The architecture sends a message that hosing down the walls could be a priority, the hall of mirrors effect suggests that the appearance of being busy is as important as really being busy. The second generation is identical to upmarket phở chain, Phở 24 with dark timber panelling, dark timber seats, white plates, the appearance that they’re one frappucino short of a Starbucks.
In Footscray, both tend to serve the same menu; interior design is not a handy marker of a great or terrible meal.
Sapa Hills opened in November 2009 and falls into the second generation with the added bonus of shots of the actual terraced hills of Sapa on the wall. The menu isn’t from northern Vietnam – it’s much the same as every other Melbourne pho joint – but there is the occasional plate from the north, like the above bo la lot: fatty and peppery beef mince wrapped in a betel nut leaf (although here, vine leaves substitute(?)), topped with peanuts.
The argot of Northern Vietnamese food is meat and the above is bun cha at it’s blunt meaty best. Grilled thin slices of pork and well charred meatballs with a thin vinegary, green papaya-topped stock. Greens are varied and bun noodle serve are generous.
Location: 112 Hopkins St, Footscray VIC 3011