Editor, author and international beer smuggler. From l to r: Larry Nelson, editor of Brewers' Guardian, Jeff Pickthall, beer blogger and smuggler, and me
This seems a little trivial now in light of this morning's news, but my book finally launched on Thursday night.
It was even better than I'd hoped - a fantastic party that made me feel very humble. Lots of IPA was consumed. Loads of my mates came. Loads of beer writers and bloggers came. Neil Morrissey and Richard Fox came.
Beer blokes from off the telly.
The secretary of the All-Party Parliamentary Beer Group came.
Robert Humphreys of the Parliamentary Beer group - no, he's NOT asking for a copy on expenses!
And Billy and Declan came.
Mrs Pete Brown's Beer Blog with Declan (l) and Billy (r, with crutch after kickboxing accident. He was kicking some boxes and hurt his foot.)
More about Billy and Dec later, but if you read Three Sheets to the Wind and thought I'd made them up, or exaggerated them, I didn't. They came from Galway to get drunk at my party.
Thanks to everyone who came. Thanks to the people from Pan Macmillan for organising it and ALWAYS doing more for me and my books than they should by rights.
And thanks so much to Brew Wharf, which is where we held the party. Since it opened, Brew Wharf, part of Vinopolis, never quite succeeded in being the beery mecca it so obviously should be. It's a great space, but it's just round the corner from the Market Porter and the Rake, two of London's best beer pubs, and has never given the impression that it celebrates beer as much as you think it should - the fact that they had more wines than beers on their drinks list - in a place called Brew Wharf - kind of said it all.
But all that is now changing. I was contacted a few months ago by Ben, the new manager, who is passionate about beer and was very keen to build new links with the beery world. They've expanded the beer range (now more beers than wines!) guest bottles change, there's a microbrewery on site which produces very palatable session beers, and I'm not sure if there's any left after my party, but Meantime IPA was on draft along with a number of other great beers. If you've visited before and left unimpressed, it's time to give Brew Wharf another chance. If you've never been before, now's the time to go! It was the perfect venue for my party.