HB&B Blog — Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #80 — Siren Hard Pour Broken Dream Nitro Breakfast Stout

Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Siren Craft Brew Stout

Fundamentals #80 — Siren Hard Pour Broken Dream Nitro Breakfast Stout

I have something of a confession to make. Throughout lockdown a craving has risen within me, a desire that can only be sated by giving in to its unreasonable demands: I really want a pint of draught Guinness. I’m all too aware that by publicly stating my desire to drink a beer produced by global drinks conglomerate Diageo, I am going against many of my core principles. “Drink local,” I demand of my readership, all while supping the Black Stuff directly from the teat of Lucifer himself. There’s true ritual to enjoying a nice pint of Guinness, and mine usually...

Read more →


Fundamentals #79 – Almasty Kush DIPA

Almasty DIPA Fundamentals Matthew Curtis Newcastle

Fundamentals #79 – Almasty Kush DIPA

I thought I was bored of New England IPAs. There was a time, like many of you reading this I’m sure, when I found myself in constant pursuit of The Juice. I was lucky in 2016 when I decided to head to Philadelphia to the Craft Brewers Conference, the brewing industry’s largest convergence within a typical calendar year. Once the conference was over, I found myself with a spare day, so – after picking up a box of doughnuts from Reading Terminal Market – I figured out which train would take me to the suburb of Ardmore, and to Tired...

Read more →


Fundamentals #78 – Vinohradský Pivovar 11 Czech Pilsner

Czech Republic Fundamentals Lager Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #78 – Vinohradský Pivovar 11 Czech Pilsner

It is officially 'taps aff' weather. As I write this [in the August heatwave, but feel free to apply it to the current September one - Ed], London is experiencing the kind of damp, muggy heat that oppresses you into a state of near-helplessness. There is nothing you can do about it, and no reason, nor ability, to resist temptation. You must drink lager now, and hope and pray that a thunderstorm of biblical proportions will finally break this hot spell, allowing your brain and body to once again function within some semblance of their normal parameters. The good news...

Read more →


Fundamentals #77 - Elusive Brewing Oregon Trail West Coast IPA

Elusive Brewing Fundamentals IPA Matthew Curtis West Coast IPA

Fundamentals #77 - Elusive Brewing Oregon Trail West Coast IPA

Over the course of my various travels to the USA, I’ve been fortunate enough to visit parts of the famed Oregon Trail. The 2,170-mile route once connected various towns along the Missouri River to Oregon's Willamette Valley during the 19th century and was used by colonialists seeking fertile land. It looks a little different these days, and traversing it is certainly less arduous, with lots more taco trucks and the occasional branch of Bed, Bath and Beyond lining the roads it once occupied. Still, it’s no less fascinating. I’ve also played the 1971 video game that is designed to simulate the...

Read more →


Fundamentals #76 — Donzoko Big Foam Rustic Lager

Donzoko Fundamentals Hartlepool Lager Matthew Curtis

Fundamentals #76 — Donzoko Big Foam Rustic Lager

Foam is unquestionably one of the most joyous parts of drinking beer. Most European nations already know this. Take the Dutch or the Belgians,­­­­­ for example: deftly serving up chalice after chalice laden with froth, before deftly whipping off the top with a swish of a knife. It’s elegance personified. In Germany and the Czech Republic, they know that all of the delicious flavour from noble hops is packed into a beer's head, so they make sure plenty of it is there for you to enjoy. The Czechs even take this to the extreme with the mlíko pour – a...

Read more →