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A Fairytale of Beer: it's a love story...

Based on a True Story

Once Upon a Time… there lived a beast; a handsome beast, but a beast nevertheless. He was a Beast in personality, in attitude, in application and in love. His inability to show feelings led him to the wenches of outer Chester-shire, Lancaster-shire and the repugnant pit known as Wakefield. It was an unhappy time.

The Beast also had an insatiable thirst that he could not replete, despite countless attempts. Never contented with the ale served at the local taverns, the Beast began sampling all manner of bottled delights from across the earth to satiate his taste. Many a pilgrimage to a shop in the hamlet of Headingley, outside the kingdom of Leeds, was excursed. The strange, foreign, bottled elements inside held many liquid delights. Some featured bovine, some deranged canines, one held a broadened men holding a barrel above his head shouting “bastard” to another fellow.

On one final occasion, when it was time for the Beast to depart Headingley for more Mancunian roads, the shop had the Head of a Dogfish. Being untutored and uneducated, the Beast had not seen nor tasted the Head of a Dogfish before. His acquirement of this bottle came from a whim; a desire to experience the unknown. Inside the bottle, the Beast found nectar so enchanting, so resplendent, so ambrosial that for a moment he believed he had finally found fulfilment. He planned to voyage from the streets of Mancunia, back to the old hamlet to acquire more of this heavenly syrup. But the journey took too long. The shop had run out of the Dogfish Head, never for it to return, not only to this shop, not only to this kingdom, but anywhere inside these shorelines. The Beast wept.

Years later the Beast met a beautiful princess whom had recently returned to her Mancunian home after some years exploring. She loved him and for six moons the Beast was happy. She brought him other earthly ambrosias so that the Beast was kept assuaged and unperturbed. But the Beast’s inability to love kept the princess at bay and in time she felt out of love with the Beast. She plotted her escape away from these shores and across the ocean to the colonial nation. Saying farewell to her once love she asked “What would you like from across the great pond, should I ever return?” The Beast was scornful of the princess and replied “The Head of a Dogfish,” knowing he would never see her again.

Yet, after some time had passed, the princess returned to Mancunia. She wished to see the Beast again to see if he had changed. The Beast agreed, knowing that he to wished to gaze upon the princess once more.

They met near the old Carr Brook and walked beside the Tame Valley. The princess recounted the adventures of her travels. The Beast told of his constant thirst quenching exploits. In time they took refuge in an inn for food and shelter. It was here that the princess revealed a gift she had brought back from the distant land. The Beast expected it to be a token or favour from the Taylor Swift wench he knew from that way, but the bundle was heavier than that. It contained a bottle, adorned with the symbol of the Dogfish’s Head. The princess had found the Beast’s long desired quarry.

It was the realisation of the effort, search and commitment that it must have taken the princess to find this that finally opened the Beast’s eyes. The two reconciled and reacquainted and the Beast was no longer seen as so from that day on.

What of the horary Head of a Dogfish then? Well, time had developed the Beast’s senses and many a craftsmen had used the intervening years to try and recreate the delicacy first tasted in Headingley. The contents didn’t seem as sharp or as eye-opening as the first experience had. That, though, is what showed this drink to be a classic. Smooth, far too easy to drink, zesty without being overly bitter, balanced and, most importantly, long on the aftertaste. This is not a beverage that hits you with hops and then fades to nothing, like so many imitations. It is the full bodied experience.

The Beast finally had the two things he longed for. Though there’d been time apart from both, both were worth waiting for.

And they all lived happily ever after…

At least, we hope so.


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