The Session No.66 – The One Beer To Rule Them All

#66: The One Beer To Rule Them All


“The Session is a monthly event for the beer blogging community which was started by Stan Hieronymus at Appellation Beer. On the first Friday of each month, all participating bloggers write about a predetermined topic. Each month a different blog is chosen to host The Session, choose the topic, and post a roundup of all the responses received. For more info on The Session, check out the Brookston Beer Bulletin’s nice archive page.”

This month’s Session is hosted by Craig Gravina at Drink Drank





I grew up in Scotland so my first forays into the world of alcohol were the big Scottish brands. Sweetheart Stout was the drink I’d get given a few sips of at parties when I was still a young boy of nine or ten and then when I was a bit older, but still not of legal drinking age, I’d be given a can of Tartan Special at weddings or to welcome in the bells at Hogmanay.  When I began drinking in pubs it was a simple matter of walking into the pup and asking for a pint of lager and being severed usually a Tennents but occasionally a McEwans. If I was buying some cans for scooping at home I’d tend to opt for McEwan’s or the other big Scottish brand, Kestrel… and when I was feeling especially radge I’d purchase four cans of Tennents Wife Beater. The other big Scottish brand I’ve not mentioned is the only one that I still occasionally indulge in these days – McEwan’s Export, which is possibly the most important beer of my life.

But what the hell is this fundamentally pointless history lesson got to do with this month’s Session topic? Well, although I’ve long had a love of drinking beer, which in more recent years has turned into a genuine interest in beer itself rather than just getting pished, I’ve never had the desire to actually brew the stuff. There are various reasons but the main two are that it all seems like a bit too much hard work (and I’m fundamentally a lazy fucker) and if I did brew and it tasted delicious I’m certain that a bit of the magic and lore of beer would be lost and consequently I’d no longer get as much enjoyment from it as I currently do. These days my entry beers no longer feature anywhere near the top of my favourites list but that doesn’t mean I don’t still hold a certain amount of affection for them. Although I’ve already said that I have no real desire to brew I have toyed with the idea of making clones of the beers of my childhood and youth… but better… much much better. I’d love to get hold of the brewing sheet for all of them and then starting playing around with the amount of hops and barley that they all contain and experiment with the likes of dry hopping and barrel ageing. I feel part of the reason those beers taste so lacklustre is that they have to appeal to the mass market and be brewed pretty cheaply but as I’d be brewing purely for myself and, possibly, a select few associates I wouldn’t be bound by such constraints and would be free to push the modest ingredients list to the limit. Yeah, I’m fully aware that even if I became highly proficient at brewing it’s doubtful that my creations would be anything especially better than their inspiration but it would be fun to try and it might produce some interesting results. Of the beers I’ve mentioned the one I’d be most keen to deconstruct would be McEwan’s Export – it’s a beer that I genuinely still enjoy drinking and one that I feel is very under-rated by today’s beer drinking cognoscenti.

So there you have it, my One Beer To Rule Them All would be an experimental McEwan’s Export clone and I’d simply call it EXPORT (SLIGHT RETURN)… just don’t expect to find it in your local beer emporium any time soon.


… photography by landells …



~ by landells on August 3, 2012.

One Response to “The Session No.66 – The One Beer To Rule Them All”

  1. I remember McEwans Export fondly too although I’ve not had it for years, it was always one of the beers in our house at Christmas long before I was old enough to drink it legally 😉

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