Windy City, non-Windy Beer (Part II)

I know some people read missives such as my Part I with a sigh, “yes Gary thank you, nicely done, but I want to see the place, almost stroll in”.

Your wish is my command.

Courtesy British Movietone, and YouTube, here is the Nag’s Head in Chicago, in 1956.

It’s under a minute in length, with no sound, but still offers good detail for brewing and social historians.

Those china hand pulls do look kind of decorative, vs. working. (If so, they probably were in Britain, too).

But see the barrel with a tap driven in the head, on a metal frame, with a cooling jacket? Certainly looks like draught beer.

Was it real ale though, unfiltered, unpasteurized British beer? Maybe they flew it over. Whitbread had the brass to do it. Non-windy beer there may have been.

Lots of dark-suited men holding half-pints, probably both British and Americans. The Britons would haverepresented Whitbread Brewery and the British travel association that organized the promotion. Consular staff would be present, too.

Probably the executive of the American travel agents association was there as well.

In fact, the dope sheet states the names of some persons present, clearly from these categories.

It looks like the inaugural party, to open the pub. The venue was Palmer House in Chicago.

We can see English publican Frederick Esgen, also in suit and tie, supervising behind the bar.

The women are formally dressed too. A few are having a beer, one in a fur stole accepts her beer with a flourish.

Bottled beer is poured, with some impressive-looking cheeses on offer. One is just readable, Cheshire. Cheddar would have been another. One would expect Stilton, too. No cheese seems to resemble it though, but it can be hard to tell with a newsreel like this.

(And maybe it was white Stilton, the type without the blue veining. This was quite popular at the time).

Looks like they had fun.

It reminds me of the first English pubs in Toronto I patronized in the business district circa 1980. And they were fun.

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