The retirement project to sample a pint of beer or cider brewed or fermented in each county of the United Kingdom.
What’s it called? Strongarm
Who made it? Camerons Brewery Ltd, Lion Brewery, Hartlepool.
What is it? A ruby red ale.
Alc Vol: 4.3%
What it says on the label: “the brewery’s flagship ale … first brewed in 1955 … with a distinctive, tight creamy head … an initial sweet surge of flavour followed by a delicious malty taste”.
Food combination: “Works perfectly with red meat dishes. Best enjoyed with or as an ingredient in pies, casseroles or hearty stews.”
Retired Bloke says: I drank this at the back-end of a September mini-heatwave, so it wasn’t the time for hearty stews; anyway, it has such a lovely colour and taste that it seems a shame to put it in a pie.
Fancy another? Yes please.
It’s not about the beer: Supporters of local football club Hartlepool United are called ‘monkey hangers’; this is based on the legend that during the Napoleonic wars a monkey was hanged as a French spy. Supposedly, the monkey, a mascot dressed in a French soldier’s costume, was the sole survivor of a shipwreck. The Hartlepudlians thought this is what Frenchmen must look like, and hanged it. (The legend is unlikely to be true….)