Recent years have seen a rise in the number of Marks and Spencer stores throughout the Czech Republic, in Prague alone there are now 7. It used to be that the stores only carried clothing, although now all the shops have limited food halls as well as small furnishings departments. I am something of a Marks and Sparks devotee, my mother worked for them way back when and we were raised on M&S products and largely clothed in their gear.
Whilst back in the UK, a trip to a decent sized M&S was an absolute must - sometimes you just need a prawn and mayonnaise sandwich on oat bread for breakfast! Strolling around the foodhall in a revery, I decided to nip over and have a look at their wine selection - which just so happened to be the other side of their beer section. Beer was never something I equated with M&S, probably because it didn't register on my radar back then. I have to admit I was thrilled - they had bottle conditioned ales of all sorts, including an Irish Stout, Cornish IPA and Suffolk Bitter. Marks and Spencer have not decided to open their own brewery, but rather have small brewers making good beers to be sold under the M&S label, which given their traditional image of having higher quality standards than many over food retailers is a vote of confidence.
Unfortunately I didn't have enough space in my bag to bring back some bottles to sample, but given the fact that I will be spending Christmas at my eldest brother's place in Ashford, I fully intend to get to grips with the entire range of beers available.
Back to Marks and Spencer in the Czech Republic, they recently had signs on their shop windows proclaiming that they had the best of British food. It is true that you can get a very nice organic cider, but what is more British than real ale? So I decided to drop the marketing department of Marks and Spencer Czech Republic an email, asking them to start bringing ales to the Czech Republic. So if you are in the Czech Republic and want to see more ale available on the market then please email Marks and Spencer and let them know that there is a market here for their beer!