Blog of the Month: 250 Beers

August 7, 2013, by Crafty Pint
Blog of the Month: 250 Beers

The advent of Untappd has made it easy for avid beer drinkers to document the journey on which their tastebuds takes them. But for one man, merely tapping “Check In” and giving beers a rating doesn’t seem to be enough. Darren Magin has a rolling counter on his own personal blog that keeps count of how many unique beers he’s consumed, plus a separate page listing them all by name.

250 Beers is a blog that also features writing about many of those beers alongside Darren’s take on what’s happening in the beer world, especially in his adopted hometown of Brisbane. He appears to be something of a kindred spirit of The Crafty Pint’s founder too, having emigrated from the UK at roughly the same time and finding his appreciation of good beer growing in tandem with the flourishing Aussie beer scene.

So, without further ado, here’s Darren to tell us a little more…

Name: Darren Magin

Name of blog:

When did you start the blog?
In its current form, the blog was born in February of this year. Prior to that it had existed since June 2012 but in a different format.

I write about:
Mainly beer-related things relative to the ever-growing Brisbane craft beer scene (new breweries, bars etc). I also write about beery stuff that’s important to me as well as a few reviews of beers that I’ve tried that stand out as either good or bad. I’m extremely pedantic about keeping a tally of unique beers that I’ve tried so this gets a bit of attention on my blog too.

What you do when not blogging:
When I haven’t got my face stuck into a new blog post (and when I haven’t got a beer in my hand) I’m an Account Manager for an Australian print management company servicing the needs of one of Australia’s largest financial institutions.

Why did you start writing the blog?
I started writing for a number of reasons. From childhood, I’ve had a desire to put words together and write. Since I emigrated from Kent in the UK in 2008 my affection for good beer has grown and grown due to this country’s wealth of craft breweries doing great things. So, I decided to combine my love of writing with my love of beer.

I also see the blog as a platform to shout about craft beer in Brisbane as loud as possible in an attempt to make more people aware of its existence – and that there are lots of alternatives to XXXX and VB.

Why should people read it?
People should read it because, well, they just should! I’m not a brewer, a bar owner or a beer preacher. I’m just a regular ‘guy on the street’ consumer with some words and opinions that people might like to read about.

What do you love / enjoy most about beer?   Aside from indulging in the wonderful world of beer at home, I really enjoy the social aspect of it. Brisbane is home to a wonderful community of craft beer lovers that have created the backbone of a vibrant beer ‘scene’ which I love being a part of.

Your favourite Australian beer?
This is a tough question. It’s very difficult to single out just one beer or even one brewery. I love most beers that Ben has created out of Bridge Road. I guess the same can be said for Red Hill, Bacchus Brewing, Holgate and Feral too.

If I had to pick one beer then I’d have to say that it would be a toss of a coin between Mornington Peninsula Brewery’s Imperial Amber and Noisy Minor’s RSVP. Both are fantastic beers in my opinion.

Favourite non-Australian beer?
Again, another tricky one as there are so many to choose from. Most Sierra Nevada beers tick a lot of boxes for me, however, being a boy from Kent, Shepherd Neame from Faversham are quite close to my heart. I have a soft spot for their Spitfire.

Favourite place to enjoy a beer?
There’s no doubt about it, my favourite place to have a beer is at home with my lovingly understanding wife.

However, when that isn’t happening you’ll find me at one of a number of amazing venues in Brisbane such as The Scratch, Tippler’s Tap, Archive Bar, The Embassy, Superwhatnot or Kerbside.

Hopes for beer in Australia?
My hopes for beer in Australia lay solely in the hands of my generation and Gen ‘Y’ plus the generation behind them: our kids. 

There is still a massive gap between sales of good beer and mass produced bad beer in this country. I’d like to see that gap closed significantly by the time my children are old enough to buy their Dad a beer. I’ll be taking the ‘drink local’ tutoring approach as soon as they’re old enough. 

As Whitney Houston once observed: “Teach them well and let them lead the way." The way things are going at the moment with such an array of intriguing breweries brewing intriguing beers then that gap will narrow eventually for sure.

Thanks, Darren. I do believe Whitney Houston ended up a crack addict, but it’s a fine sentiment nonetheless! Check out his blog here or follow him on Twitter.

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