The British Isles have a diversity about them that speaks of tradition and originality, mysticism and sophistication, hauteur and warmth. Cities are as distinctive as the islands that possess them. In Scotland, mountains awash in purple haze fill the nostrils with the pungent rippling of heather, intermixed with stretches of peat hags and bogs. Drama strikes the land with splashes of ever-changing light, volatile weather, and a mixture of straths, lochs, islands, and volcanic protuberances. Gaelic poet Sorley MacLean describes this jewel as the “love of my people, delight of their eyes.”
Across the Irish Channel, Scotland links to Ireland by hundreds of years of history, and thousands of years of glaciations that left their mark on this arresting territory, seemingly painted with striking shades of green. People are warm and engaging. Killarney, blessed with singing pubs, and the famous Blarney Castle call to those seeking the “gift of eloquence” in this mystic land.
A skip across the Irish Sea leads to England, with its interfusion of heavy and hi-tech industries, literary centers, financial institutions and traditions in beer. History has left its mark throughout the landscape – artifacts dating back to the Roman Empire, architecture of European influence, and state-of-the-art technological superstructures. Add the eloquence and knowledge of British-born Michael Jackson, the World-class authority on beer and whiskey, and the British Isles breathe with life, “where the patter flows nonstop.”
On Wednesday, March 28, 2007, Michael Jackson presents an intimate, five-course “Tour of the British Isles” Beer Dinner at 6:30 in the evening, at Spinnerstown Hotel, 2195 Spinnerstown Road, Spinnerstown, Pennsylvania, USA, just 30 miles north of Philadelphia. A superb gastronomic feast, prepared through the culinary talents of Chef Karl, complements a distinctive line-up of outstanding beers, including the World-Class Young’s Special London Ale, possibly the last opportunity to taste this classic from the terroir that inspired its creation.
Between the welcoming, stimulant qualities of the pre-dinner aperitif through the satiating, bolder flavors of the after-dinner digestif, delicate flavors of wild regional herbs blend with the tantalizing piquancy of parsnip soup, elaborately prepared seafood-courses of mussels, scallops and shrimp, and the mouth-watering pleasures of crown of lamb, followed by chocolate cake soaked in Irish Redbreast Whiskey – each course, perfectly matched with Jackson’s choice of beer, and peppered with anecdotes, stories and digressions that give life to each quaff and morsel.
As an additional bonus, Michael Jackson will share his 65th birthday celebration with his select guests during this special event. Spinnerstown Hotel grew out of the original land grant extended to Morris Morris by William Penn in the early 1700’s. During its significant history, the Spinnerstown Hotel had earned the title “The Sign of the Spread Eagle” in 1853, and retained its charm through more than twenty changes in ownership. In 1959, it was acquired by the John and Susan Dale family, passionate proprietors whose innovative vision is a priceless commodity in the world of esteemed restaurateurs.
The author of more than a dozen books on beer and whiskey, Michael Jackson emerges as the world’s pre-eminent authority on the subject. His honors throughout the world are astounding. In 2006, he was presented with the James Beard Award for his Book, Whiskey, the Definitive World Guide. Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium has honored him with the Mercurius Award for his book,The Great Beers of Belgium and for his “Beer Hunter” television series. Mr. Jackson has received the Andre Simon Award, the Glenfiddich Trophy, numerous Glenfiddich Awards, the Gold Tankard of the British Guild of Beer Writers, and Columnist of the Year from the North American Guild of Beer Writers. In addition, he is an Officer of Honor in the Chavalerie de Fourquet, a member of the Belgian Confederation of Brewers, an active member of the Slow Food Movement and the first recipient of the Achievement Award of the Institute of Fermentation Studies. He has written for scores of magazines and newspapers across the world, including Playboy, Esquire, Malt Advocate, Beer Passion, GQ, National Geographic Traveler, Geo, and Travel & Leisure, and is the most influential authority in the field of beer and whiskey in the world.
For information and reservations for Michael Jackson's "Tour of the British Isles" Beer Dinner, call 215-536-7242 or email