As I am sure I have mentioned several times on here, in a couple of weeks I am heading to Ireland for a long weekend just before my birthday. I have never been to Ireland before and am really looking forward to it - not just for the opportunity to try out a few places like The Porterhouse and Messrs Maguire, but also because I have something of a fascination with Ireland in general (well ok then, I have a weakness for girls with a Connemara accent!).
We will be staying with friends of Mrs Velkyal in a village called Rochfortbridge in County Westmeath, so hopefully we'll avoid some of the tourist traps of Dublin and get to see the real Ireland a wee bit - whenever we travel we like to go to the places locals hang out in rather, my sincerest hope for the afternoon of the 15th is to find a good pub to watch the rugby in (unless someone reading this has 4 tickets going spare for the game at Croke Park and an overwhelming urge to let my lovely American wife continue her rugby education!).
As a result of the planning for this trip to Ireland, I have decided to make November my Dark Beers Month - as you can see from my Little Cellar Holdings list on the side of this page I have stocked up on a few bits and pieces, and plan to bring a couple back with me. Obviously I won't be drinking purely stout and porters for the month, but will also include dark beers from the Czech Republic and anywhere else I can get my hands on.