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Planet Thanet Easter Beer Festival 2009 (CAMRA Beer Festival)

Beer (sort)Average Score (sort)No. Samples (sort)
Sarah Hughes - Dark RubyExceptional1
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Saint Petersburg Imperial Russian Stout (now superseded by 7.4% version)Exceptional1
Swannay (formerly Highland) - Scapa SpecialExceptional1
Stewart - Edinburgh No. 3Excellent1
Oakham - AsylumExcellent1
RCH - PitchforkExcellent1
Sulwath - The Black GallowayExcellent1
De Zenne - Taras BoulbaExcellent1
De Ranke - GuldenbergExcellent1
Dark Star - IPAExcellent1
RCH - East St Cream (was East Street Cream)Excellent1
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - JaipurExcellent1
De Molen - EngelExcellent1
Cotleigh - BuzzardExcellent1
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - PandemoniumExcellent2
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Exodus StoutExcellent1
Westerham - Single Hop WGVGood2
De Molen - AmerikaansGood1
Saltaire - Titus BlackGood2
Frome (formerly Milk Street) - The Usual (at one time 4.1%)Good1
Grainstore - Rutland PantherGood1
Rudgate - Ruby MildGood1
Saltaire - Trio PaleGood1
De Zenne - Zinne BierGood1
Matthew's - Pithead PorterGood2
Moorhouse's - Old BossGood1
Dark Star - Imperial StoutGood2
Goacher's - Crown Imperial StoutAcceptable1
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Common ConspiracyAcceptable1
Dark Star - Victorian Ruby MildAcceptable1
De Ranke - XX BitterAcceptable1
Shardlow - Reverend Eaton's AleAcceptable1
Elland - Dark TranquilityAcceptable2
Derventio - Et Tu BrutusAcceptable1
Leeds - AscensionAcceptable1
Blindmans - Mine BeerAcceptable1
Blue Monkey - Golden AleAcceptable1
Sarah Hughes - Pale AmberPoor1
Lincolnshire Craft (formerly Tom Wood's) - Bomber CountyPoor1
Orkney (Sinclair) - Dark IslandPoor1
Golcar - Golcar MildPoor1
Bradfield - Farmers StoutPoor1
Picture 1. Planet Thanet Easter Beer Festival 2009, Margate, Kent

Visits Details

11 Apr 2009 (Blair)
I dragged myself out of bed at 11 then after a few cups of coffee got a taxi back over to the festival. I was really surprised at how quiet it was inside. Only about a tenth the amount of people as the same time yesterday. Got my spot back behind the bar and started the drinking. Alistair popped in today so had a lengthy chat with him, but all in all it was a little uneventful today. So unsurprisingly I had to leave the bar at 6 because I was falling asleep while leaning on the barrels.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Swannay (formerly Highland) - Scapa Special4.20ExceptionalThis is one of the best best bitters I've ever tasted. Fruity with a little hops and malt. Just a pleasure to drink.
RCH - East St Cream (was East Street Cream)5.00ExcellentOne of my old favourites. I had this at the original thanet beer festival in 2006. Fruity with a bit of roast malt and bread. Nice complex, strong bitter.
Cotleigh - Buzzard4.80ExcellentYes this was really lovely. A nice light old ale to start the day. Smoky with a little coffee and roasted malt.
RCH - Pitchfork4.30ExcellentOdd but good is how we all agreed on this one. I actually got into an argument with a customer about this one. For some reason we had the brewery marked as 'Close' we all knew it was RCH but it wasn't our place to change it. But a customer got irate with me when I wouldn't change it and actually complained about me, one of the highlights of the day.
Sulwath - The Black Galloway4.40ExcellentVery intense, black stout. Loads of roasted malt and coffee.
Stewart - Edinburgh No. 34.30ExcellentFantastic scottish heavy. Very dark and malty with plenty of fruit.
Saltaire - Titus Black4.50ExcellentRich black ale, black cocolate flavour. Bit of coffee and roasted malt.
De Zenne - Taras Boulba4.50ExcellentStrongly hopped golden ale. Very light and fruity.
Rudgate - Ruby Mild4.40GoodI had the last of this to myself. Rich nutty mild, roasted malt and chocolate. Good.
Frome (formerly Milk Street) - The Usual (at one time 4.1%)4.40GoodMalty with plenty of malt, fruit and caramel. Nice.
De Zenne - Zinne Bier6.00GoodHoppy and fruity. Honey like flavour to it.
Shardlow - Reverend Eaton's Ale4.50AcceptableSmooth lightly hopped bitter. Not bad at all, but didn't stack up well to some of the other beers I'd had today.
Blindmans - Mine Beer4.20AcceptableSweet caramel flavoured beer. Alright but there's much better to be had.
Lincolnshire Craft (formerly Tom Wood's) - Bomber County4.80PoorMy employer sponsored this barrel so I felt obliged to give it a go. I wish I hadn't. Just nothing to it really. Bit of caramel, maybe a hint of coffee. Meh.
10 Apr 2009 (Ian)
Only really just over the effects of surgery and also had a cold, so probably not in the best of frames of minds, but still, a great place to come. Very good venue with lots of seating, a capacity of 1900 I think, a nice long bar and some good people. Nice to Rudolph from Bexley BF, Blair behind the bar, Andrew, Ang (Reakt) from Ratebeer, Phil Lowry and his parents, Steve behind the bottle stand (Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel was outstanding), and my 2 friends from Ruislip. Music in the evening was so much better than the skiffle of the afternoon. Congrats to the Thanet branch for being so well organised.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Pandemonium9.00ExceptionalSo beer of the festival for me. Very deep ruby colour, lasting beige head. Impy porter aroma with lots of choc and hops too. Good handfull of hops clearly on this. Lovely dry roasted intense choc on the end. Bit of liquorice. Really well put together taking into account the volume of ingredients in it.
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Jaipur5.90ExcellentJust lacking a wee bit maybe
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Exodus Stout6.20ExcellentSuch an intense/drinkable stout, good fullness. Utterly drinkable. I love it.
De Molen - Amerikaans4.50GoodSo lucky to see one of Menno's beers in cask at a British beer festival. Yes, clearly not made with an English yeast, but that is good, to challenge the taste buds now and again. Good hops, tasty grapefruit. Good tasty.
Saltaire - Trio Pale4.40GoodGolden. Very decent. Good pale malts. Nice balnaced malts, decent hops. Just a really well put together beer.
Moorhouse's - Old Boss4.30GoodGold, lasting thin white. I like this, very drinkable English pale ale, right balance of everything.
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Common Conspiracy4.80AcceptableGiven how good the Dark version was and Blair's ratings, I was so excited about seeing this. Beautiful clear pale chestnut, lasting bubbly beige head. Some leafy hop on aroma, but not as hoppy as I expected. Good toffee in mouth and then really quite bitter on end. Not as good as the Dark. Hoppy on end, but more bitter than flavoursome.
Matthew's - Pithead Porter4.40AcceptableVery deep ruby colour with no real head. Yes, a half decent choccy porter with some dark fruits. Decent. Quite drinkable.
Westerham - Single Hop WGV4.00AcceptableGold, lasting white head. Westerham yeast, decent hops, not too exciting, but the yeast character is excellent, just not sold on the rest of the beer.
Leeds - Ascension3.90AcceptableGolden lasting bubbly off white head. Fairly average golden ale with some hop on finish.
Elland - Dark Tranquility4.50UndrinkableFull of diacetyl. Can't drink it. Poured it.
10 Apr 2009 (Blair)
Arrived at around 11 for a brief meeting before the crowds descended upon us. After a little chat we got to the drinking, nice to have a couple before the place got packed out. Then at 12 i found my spot behind the bar and prepared myself for the onslaught. This was a great day, I had a great time. Had a good few chats with Ian and Andrew and it was quite entertaining to see Andrew getting merrier and merrier every time he came back to the bar. Things got a little stressful at around 5, but after that it was plain sailing for the rest of the evening. I can't believe I managed to carry on drinking right up until closing.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Sarah Hughes - Dark Ruby6.00ExceptionalThis beer is wonderful. May well be my favourite beer in the world ever. I just love the combination of fruit and roasted malt with the chocolate. Fantastic.
Thornbridge / Thornbridge Hall - Saint Petersburg Imperial Russian Stout (now superseded by 7.4% version)7.70ExceptionalI seemed to be on my own, but I thought this was better than the Dark Star Imperial Stout. Incredibly rich and vibrant. Strong flavour of roasted malt, coffee and chocolate. Perfectly balance. Had more flavour in it's 7.7% than Dark Star did in it's 10.5%.
Dark Star - IPA6.20ExcellentThis is still one of my favourite IPA's. Very bitter with loads of hops and despite the high abv, very easy to drink.
De Molen - Engel4.50ExcellentCitrus/grassy aroma. Fruity and sweet with a nice amount of hops.
Dark Star - Imperial Stout10.50ExcellentVery powerful. A lot of charcoal but in a good way if that makes sense. Rich with a fair amount of roasted malt and chocolate.
Oakham - Asylum4.50ExcellentCrisp pale ale with a good citrus aroma. Really zingy hoppy flavour, cleans the mouth out, not in a toothpaste kind've way though.
De Ranke - Guldenberg8.50ExcellentVery rich and sweet triple style ale. Quite creamy with a bit of yeast and light malty flavour. Really good.
Westerham - Single Hop WGV4.00ExcellentI'm really getting into Westerham's beers just lately. They are just perfect for summer. Nice hoppy light ale with a bit of fruit. Simple but incredibly effective.
Grainstore - Rutland Panther3.40GoodSweet with plenty of roasted malt, little smoky with a hint of chocolate. Good mild.
Matthew's - Pithead Porter4.40GoodDark porter, roasted malt and a little chocolate. Could do with a little more depth maybe but still a good beer.
Ramsgate Brewery (Gadds') - Pandemonium9.00GoodStrong double porter. Loads of roasted malt with plenty of hops floating about. Good beer, but dare I say maybe a little thin...
Derventio - Et Tu Brutus4.50AcceptableSweet and fruity with a tiny bit of smoke. Too watery. Shame.
Sarah Hughes - Pale Amber4.00PoorJust no, no no a thousand times no. There was nothing wrong with the condition on this. Just a terrible beer. Sharp, astringent. I could only manage a couple of slurps then into the slops bucket it went.
10 Apr 2009 (Andrew)
What an excellent festival this is. Well run, good beer selection and good venue. I sat with Ian and Brian and I had some good chats with Blair who was behind the bar. It was good to see Martyn and Kevin the Pickle from the Butcher's Arms (who also very kindly gave me a lift home). Jeff and Jo were in attendence too so all in all I had a was a very good time.
BeerABVScoreNotes
Elland - Dark Tranquility4.50ExcellentBlack. Subtle, biscuity, roasted and slightly sour with a hint of caramel.
Goacher's - Crown Imperial Stout4.50AcceptableNot a shadow of the Smoky Bacon Crisp version of a few years back.
De Ranke - XX Bitter6.20AcceptableIan had gone on about this for so long that it was the first beer I had. Pale gold and cloudy. Smells like a wheat beer. Strong grapefruit hop and yeasty. Wouldn't know it was 6.2%. 6.2%? Belgium? Musty-dusty cloudy beer? Why am I drinking this?
Dark Star - Imperial Stout10.50AcceptableMedicinal, nettles, burnt plastic, pine, liquorish, tar, fags, alcohol, puff, and just a bit too much.
Saltaire - Titus Black4.50AcceptableWatery, caramel, burnt, insipid
Dark Star - Victorian Ruby Mild6.00AcceptableBit fizzy. Sharp, musty, dusty. Not great
Blue Monkey - Golden Ale3.40AcceptableLight fruity, bit young tasting, bit grapefuity. All in all a bit obvious as Alan Partridge would say.
Orkney (Sinclair) - Dark Island4.60PoorSinclair Dark Island it's called. Umm. I've had this before a number of times and it's a great beer... well it was a great beer. Don't know what this beer was. Watery weak sharp briney. Not the Dark Island I know.
Bradfield - Farmers Stout4.50PoorSickly sour black beer. Milky sweetness. To be honest, the Farmer can keep this.
Golcar - Golcar Mild3.40PoorSour weak wishy-washy stuff.

About the Planet Thanet Easter Beer Festival 2009

The pub sign. Planet Thanet Easter Beer Festival 2009, Margate, Kent

Summary of Beer Scores

 Total
Exceptional4
Excellent16
Good9
Acceptable13
Poor5

The pub is found in Margate, Kent, CT9 1HX.

The annual Thanet CAMRA branch beer festival held in the Winter Gardens.

We have visited this pub 4 times, seen 42 different beers and tried them all.

Map location

Postcode: CT9 1HX