maritime city

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Shipshape and Bristol Fashion

The proud West Country city of Bristol ain’t short of it’s fair share of killer breweries, with the likes of Arbor Ales, Moor Beer Co, The Bristol Beer Factory, The Wild Beer Co, and Bath Ales firmly established, these lot know a thing or two about quality beer. Wiper and True are a fairly new addition to the roster, from homebrewing to nomadic brewing around the south west of England to a new brewery in their home city, they’ve developed quite a reputation in the last couple of years and I thought it was about time I looked into what all the fuss was about.

To get me started I thought I’d try a couple of their contemporary spins on some traditional English brews, and Bristol being a maritime city I deemed to pick styles known for being shipped to the wider world as well as the local pub. So India pale ale and Russian imperial stout then. Except that I couldn’t find a RIS, don’t think they’ve made one. I am far too presumptuous. Export stout then. Sorted.

India Pale Ale Citra (6.7% abv) An American style IPA this one, and packin’ one of my most favouritest, bestalicious hops. The mighty Citra. And aye, it’s a superb drop. That over-hopping delivers flavours of juicy, overripe orange, guava, passion fruit, and grapefruit that are joined by piney, floral undertones and eventually the subdued caramelised biscuit-like malt. It’s bitter-sweet, dry, and pretty dank and resinous for a UK brewed American-ish style IPA (or at least, more so than the bright and breezy ones I usually drink), and I’m absolutely diggin’ it! A stellar start indeed.

Export Stout Topaz (6.2% abv) follows, loaded with a hefty dose of Australian Topaz hops. Now, I gotta say I’m not all that familiar with Topaz in isolation, but I am familiar with well hopped English export stouts so, throwing caution to the wind I dive in. It kinda tastes like a mouthful of coffee grounds, cacao nibs, charcoal, and Eccles cakes. The big, bitter hop finish brings whole bramble bushes weighed down with juicy blackberries and hints of more exotic fruits, and lingers for an age, leaving me somewhat breathless in appreciation. Bold, roasty, and bitter, a proper top tier brew. Just brilliant.

And I’m done, my brief dalliance with this small brewery with distinctive branding and big ideas a resounding two thumbs up. I’ll be on the lookout for more of their beers and will make an effort to grab them at every opportunity. If you’re based in the UK and you’ve yet to try them, I heartily encourage you to do the same. Cheers!

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Painted in blue: Sea of people pose nude in Britain  

Over 3,000 people stripped and splashed themselves in blue in the British city of Hull as a part of a performance art project to mark Hull’s “City of Culture” event in 2017.

The 3,200 volunteers from 20 countries gathered in the city with a sole purpose – pose for a series of nude photographs in front of the city’s various landmarks.

The project titled “Sea of Hull” is hosted by American photographer Spencer Tunick, who is known for his large-scale nude shoots.

The “Sea of Hull” project is a reflection of the city’s maritime heritage, as the four shades of blue body paint represented the colors of water, BBC reported.

One participant, 80-year-old Stephane Janssen, who travelled from Brussel’s to the UK city for the project, told BBC that he admired the idea that everybody was naked, as it reflects equality in some sense.

“Everybody is equal – no race nor sex difference – everybody is the same, naked…and that’s what I love,” he said.