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It was a glorious Saturday afternoon in early October. The sky was clear blue and the sun was shining brightly. Dave Cook and I arrived at the Docks for our afternoon on a boat. This trip was organised for those who helped out at the recent 30th Ipswich Maritime Beer Festival. So we climbed aboard The Orwell Lady and took a seat on the lower deck. She departed just after 2pm and took us on a round trip to Harwich whilst the captain told us historical facts and told us where to look along the way. But this was only half of the story.
Gary and co. had organised food and drink for the journey. This is where it got exciting. So let’s start off with the food. There was a finger buffet with a difference which was fitting for the setting. There was a bowl of tortilla chips, with hummus to dip in as well as olives, peppers, carrots and many more vegetables made you feel like you were on the Mediterranean rather than the River Orwell.
There were also four different beers to wash all this lovely food down with. Each beer had its own identity which made it difficult to pick out a favourite. For those who prefer a lower percentage beer the Leeds Samba at 3.7 % was very light bodied and went down rather easily. Sharps Doombar at 4.0% is always tasty on pump but it was particularly refreshing on this occasion. Arkwrights Golden was a superb golden ale. It was smooth in texture and crisp in taste and at 5.0% was ideal for afternoon in the sun. Last but not least Dove Street Oil at 5.5% was delicious. It was very black in colour but very smooth so it went down splendidly. It tasted better than at the beer festival and Gary informed me this barrel has been matured for 3 months and gets better the longer you leave it.
Overall it was a very enjoyable afternoon. A relaxing boat trip with fine beer and nibbles is what Saturday’s are for.