The lad and I are off to foreign parts on Saturday; I won’t say much more at present, but I’m sure many of you will have guessed beer will feature quite highly on the trip. As if getting everything ready was not enough, we’ve an important quality audit coming up at work, which happens to take place the week I’m back.
I’m not one of the major players in this event, but I’ve still got an important role to play. Making sure procedures, instructions and other quality-related documents are up to date is quite a task at the best of times, but when you’re being assessed on this, and your continuing certification is potentially at risk, it does tend to focus minds extremely sharply.
The Barn, which is just a short hop from the town’s main railway station.
As the name might suggest, The Barn is an old farm building, which has been re-constructed using some of the original bricks and beams. The place functions as both a bar and a restaurant, and whilst I have drunk in the ground-floor “pub” section on several occasions, the other night was the first time I have ventured upstairs to the restaurant.
We were asked which wine we would like, but all opted for beer, as we know from experience that our visitors enjoy a glass or two of beer. Harvey’s Sussex Best was the only cask ale available, but it was pretty average. It wasn’t off, but it was definitely a bit tired, so I only gave it a 2.0 NBSS. I switched afterwards to Cinque; a 5.0% lager from the Shepherd Neame stable, which is brewed using five different grains.
It was a good evening and whilst some of the talk was obviously work-related, a fair chunk of it was not. We know that our colleagues from head office relish their visits to the UK, as alongside the opportunities afforded by inter-company cooperation, it gives them a break from the insanely long hours which many of then work.
birth-rate. With the crazy hours put in by many Japanese workers, (one of our colleagues regularly works a 15 hour day), people are too tired to form meaningful relationships with the opposite sex, and even when they do, there is little time for procreation and raising a family.
Leaving these and other issues aside, our colleagues could have picked a better week to visit, given the audit preparations which are going on. For me though, it was fortunate that the project they had come to oversee, involves mainly production staff, although they did insist on using my laboratory for their in-process testing !
Blogger Matt Thompson, over at “When My Feet Go Through The Door”, covers the story in much greater detail, but it seems more and more people are realising the value of “provenance” for their products, and the holy fathers of Grimbergen Abbey are no exception.
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