A post from Simon over at CAMRGB HQ got me thinking about the whole dispense thing - it was interesting reading stuff from Tandleman about Camra's apparent willingness to think about thinking about possibly maybe putting the idea of having a think about voting to concede that some, although not all, obviously, keg beers might not be the collaborative work of Pol Pot and the Golgothan shit demon.
I don't really care about the dispense system for a particular beer. I'd happily let the brewers chose how to serve their beer - the clue's in the fact that it is their beer. It seems a bit strange to suggest that they'd go to all the trouble of brewing a beer without a suitable way of serving it in mind. I am happy to defer to their expertise.
On the other hand, it would really disappoint me if a way of serving beer were to be dismissed out of hand, or disappear altogether. Tandleman also mentions that BrewDog* and others have decided not to bother with cask again, which, if it's true, is frankly quite pathetic for any brewery that claims to be innovative. Closing cask off entirely sounds more like sulking than innovating, why not keep your options open?
So what has this rambling got to do with Pedigree? I used to work in a pub that served Pedigree, and I didn't drink it in there, but I did drink it up the road at the next pub which had a much smaller turnover. Same beer, both kept 'correctly,' but tasted different simply because of the variables involved. Others much preferred it the other way round. Which was 'better?' Well, neither, and I suppose some people would see the variation as an irritant, but I think it made things just a bit more interesting, and interest, while a bad thing if you owe Tony Soprano/Mastercard/insert other loan shark's name here, money, is generally a good thing.
*Supported, however anecdotally, by my being told today that the new Nottingham venue hasn't got a cellar. I'm guessing a keg room - used to have those in a couple of pubs in Australia I worked in, no casks conditioning in those.