A Taste of Kent
Shepherd Neame directors Robert and Jonathan Neame testing the quality and consistency of the latest batch of Bishops Finger Kentish Ale - continuing a tradition that dates back to the 1950s when the beer first appeared on the market.
When Bishops Finger was first brewed in 1958, it became a brewery custom that one member of the Neame family monitored each brew to ensure that it adhered to the original recipe, which uses water from the brewery’s 200ft artesian well, English malt and locally grown Goldings hops to produce a full-bodied ale with a lingering hoppy finish.
The ‘ritual’ was formalised in January 2003 when, as promulgated in the Bishops Finger Charter, “it was decreed at a meeting of the Board of Directors that the beer must always be…presented to a member of the Board for personal approval on a weekly basis”.
The opening of the appropriately-named Bishops Room - a purpose built “flavour assessment suite” - in May 2003 meant that the tradition is now perpetuated in a state-of-the-craft, aroma-free environment.
Flavour testing of all beers brewed by the independent Kent brewer, which was previously carried out by Brewing Research International, is now conducted ‘in house’ by the brewing team in the Bishops Room.