Now THAT’S a Comment Thread!

You think the deluge of comments that occurred in this space following my “Sh*t (people) Do” series was entertaining? You ain’t seen nothing yet!

As usual, I am bettered by my British colleagues, in this case the Fabulous Melissa Cole*, who took umbrage with a statement BrewDog head James Watt made in Greg Koch and Matt Allyn’s book, The Brewer’s Apprentice. You should follow the link and read it for yourself, but the upshot of it all was that Watt felt that his experience with the British and U.S. brewing industries had lead him to believe theat the latter was far more open and friendly than the former.

And then came the comments!

Brewers are heard from. Writers sound off. The English and the Scots exchange words. Tempers become heated, then cooled. And it all makes for a terribly interesting read.

Go on, take 10 minutes and have a go at it yourself. Beer-based entertainment at its very best.

*Because the Internet is notoriously bad at conveying emotional meaning, I must add that I include “Fabulous” because I really do think Ms. Cole is fabulous, and not because I’m trying to be sarcastic.


Filed under beer & the web, beer blogs, beer books

10 responses to “Now THAT’S a Comment Thread!

  1. Oh, she IS fabulous!
    Awesome thread, been watching this one.

  2. Fabulous? Really??? She’s fabulous if you think it’s write to call someone an outrageous liar over having an opinion that differs from you. As sad a case of trolling and baiting as ever I saw.

    Remind me next time of the standards required if I need to be witty and nothing comes to mind.

    • Mike

      Alan, you’ve confirmed my opinion of you. What you have written is dead wrong and you attack Melissa no basis in fact. Why? Because all your points are without merit. If you had bothered to look below the surface, you would see your mistakes.

      James Watt has tried, with quite a bit of success, to be the thorn in the side of British brewing almost since Brewdog was founded (2007). Samples? Sure: “CAMRA are almost single handedly responsible for holding back innovation in British brewing with their overbearing emphasis on tiny amount of pretty boring beer styles.” or “Most British small brewers do nothing to further the craft beer revolution. Specifically those who flood the market with dull, steady, fundamentally boring brown beers, on a flavor spectrum defined by a 3.5% mild and a 4% bitter with their branding created in some demented vacuum of taste and logic.” (

      But, it gets worse. He packaged one of his beers in the bodies of dead squirrels. Why? I suspect this was another attack on CAMRA, or rather, the animal-lovers who account for a fair number of the membership.

      So, he thinks British brewers are not friendly? You don’t think that saying those brewers do something in “some demented vacuum of taste and logic” might have something to do with that?

      Before calling someone names, you might want to look into the background of the issue first.

  3. stephenbeaumont

    Surely “right,” Mr. McL?

    Melissa’s fabulousness has naught to do with this post. She’s been fabulous for years.

  4. Surely, yes.

    Can’t say I am able to base opinions in such matters on degrees of acquaintance but the actual words used.

    • stephenbeaumont

      My point being that an individual should not be judged on the basis of a single post. Else you and I, Mr. McL, could long since have been identified as mere intemperate cranks.

      • I agree but I have a specific point which is I just find it very odd that you call someone a liar (over something of personal opinion and experience that cannot be a “lie” just a disagreement ) and then are surprised they are pissed at you. The manners in the original post are stunningly poor. That being said, the shit storm in all directions (and even misogynistic) that it caused is equally stunning.

        To summarize: someone says they find Americans more open and the English more closed. This is news?

  5. So… a knock down, drag out, pier six internet brawl over whether they’re friendly enough. I don’t even know, man.

  6. There are differences between open and friendly, and closed and unfriendly, but… Interesting, anyway.

    Also something to be said for honesty, even if it’s downright rude. I’ve noticed that UK beer folks (much like Belgian ones, FWIW) talk serious shit about each other, privately — and apparently on the Internet. I am generalizing, of course. Rudeness but also strong convictions and honesty.

    As Americans we can be positive and friendly and uncritical and frankly full of shit. I don’t want to speak for the Canadians.

  7. Mike

    If Bill Gates, Rupert Murdoch or James Murdoch told me the answer was yes, I would know that meant the answer was actually no. These three businessmen have proved by word and action that pursuit of gold can excuse any lie or deceit. I think, also by word and action, James Watt has earned himself a place along-side these three men.

    This observation is not based on the quote Melissa Cole took issue with, it is based on the words and actions of his company over the past several years.

    And, as far as I’m concerned, beer in the UK isn’t improved by his company’s products.

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