White Beer Travels. What's in a Name?  All is revealed on the Home Page! Schneider Weisse, a well-travelled, classic Wheat/White Beer, brewed in Bavaria by Schneider.  Click on the image to go to their website As well as giving John's Beer CV (Curriculum Vitæ / Résumé), this page contains the definition of Real Ale, amongst other things
Belgian Beer, German Beer, British Real Ale, North American Craft Beer and Speciality Beer and Specialty Beer from around the world, are all covered in this White Beer Travels website This White Beer Travels website has been in operation since March, 2002.  It promotes Speciality/Craft Beer from around the world: Belgian Beer, German Beer, Craft Beer from the USA and Canada, Real Ale from the UK, etc
Click here  to reach the "White Beer Travels" Home PageClick here for Speciality Beer and Brewery News.  Also check out the "Archives" for "old" news!Click to find details of Beer Hunts that you can joinClick here to get information on "Past Beer Hunts" organised by "White Beer Travels"Click here for information on what to expect on a typical Beer Hunt organised by White Beer TravelsCurrent "Pub of the Month". See the "Archives" page for links to the other onesClicking on this button provides a link to John White's General CV (Curriculum Vitae/ Résumé), as opposed to his Beer one presented on this page Click here for past Pubs of the Month, News, etcClick here for downloadable guides to places, breweries and barsClick here for "Links" to other websites. There are many on the other pages of the site, as well!Click here for full details on how to contact White Beer TravelsClick here for information on how the site was built, including acknowledgement of any help receivedClick here for details of the French to English Translation Service offered by White Beer Travels, & for the contact details of organisations that can provide the reverse
Belgian Beer and other great Speciality/Craft Beers, these including Real Ale from the UK and Craft Beers from the USA and Canada, are promoted on this, the White Beer Travels website.  It is a big site, so to get an outline idea of the contents, click here to go to the site's Contents page
  Würzburg, in Germany, is world-renowned for its "Franken" wines. However, White (Wheat) Beers have certainly travelled to the city.  The three different ones shown here are excellent examples. All are brewed in the city's Würzburger Hofbräu Brewery. Click on the glasses to go to the brewery's website, from which the image was pasted
Your cursor is on a photo showing John White's induction into the inner circle of Les Amis de la Bière, in France. A scanned photo. The venue is to be found at 15, avenue Achille Péchon, tel 03 20 90 24 59. Click on the photo to go to the Guild's website

The photo to the left is, by John White's wife, Joyce. It shows John being inducted into La Ghilde des Eswards Cervoisiers, the inner circle of France's premier beer consumers' organisation, Les Amis de la Bière (The Friends of Beer) (www.amis.biere.org).

The ceremony took place in June, 1998, in the restaurant/bar, L'Orée du Bois, in 59133 Phalempin. The meal afterwards, which was accompanied by outstanding French Speciality Beers, was still going strong after six hours!

John White's Beer CV / Résumé

When John White (1945-) commenced drinking beer in 1961, at the age of sixteen, he did not realise that he was drinking what CAMRA, (www.camra.org.uk) the CAMpaign for Real Ale, would come to call Real Ale (Cask Ale) when the organisation was formed in 1971, see the caption on the photo to the right, which features handpumps, these being synonymous with Real Ale in England.

CAMRA truly did save Real Ale for the nation, at a time when the big brewers were seemingly trying to kill it off, by forcing the beer drinking public to drink ghastly fizzes such as Watney's Red Barrel. Such beers, and appalling imitations of classic German and Czech Pilsener-style beer (Lager) were heavily marketed at this time, as they are to this day. These beers are filtered and subject to pasteurisation, a process which destroys beneficial flavours produced during the fermentation stage of the brewing process. Real Ale is unpasteurised and unfiltered, the residual yeast present in the vessel from which it is delivered inducing a second fermentation in the cask: it is cask-conditioned. Draught Continental Specialty Beers are generally filtered, but unpasteurised, although the best of the bottled Speciality Beers have yeast present in the bottle; they are essentially Real Ale in a bottle.

Your cursor is on a photo featuring John with Michael Hardman, one of the four co-founders of CAMRA.  John and Michael have their hands on Young's Bitter handpumps. The other handpumps are for dispensing Young's Special and Young's St George's Ale, one of their seasonal beers. Click on the photo to go to the Young's website

The above photo was taken by Joyce White, in June, 2004. Behind the bar of the Brook Green Hotel, in Hammersmith, London, is Michael Hardman, who, most famously, in 1971, co-founded CAMRA, and was its first Chairman, from 1971 to 1974. At the time the photo was taken, Michael was a Public Relations Consultant for the once hallowed Young's Brewery (www.youngs.co.uk), in London. Note that following the merger of Young's with Charles Wells (www.charleswells.co.uk), of Bedford, its beers are brewed in Bedford, and Michael took charge of PR for SIBA (www.siba.co.uk), the Society of Independent Brewers. The Brook Green Hotel (170 Shepherd's Bush Road, W6 7NB, tel 020 7603 2516, GPS: 51.497332o N, 0.222852o W) is one of a number of hotels owned by Young's, the full list and that of the pubs serving its Real Ales can be found on the Young's website. Thanks to Young's and Michael, the AGM of the British Guild of Beer Writers (www.beerwriters.co.uk) was held at the Hotel on the evening before the photo was taken, when John was elected onto the Guild's committee. Click here to see a photo featuring John with another of the four founders of CAMRA.


John became an active CAMRA member, promoting the UK's classic Speciality Beers: Real Ale. He did not take much notice of foreign beers, although, in 2004, on looking at some postcards that his mother had saved, he noted one that he posted on a business trip from Antwerp, in Belgium, in September, 1976, on which he wrote: "I'm writing this in a caff drinking a geuze (a funny beer)"! Click here to see the postcard's text, here for its view. However, this must not have been a memorable Gueuze, since it was not until 1988, when he was obliged to go on another business trip to Antwerp, that he saw the light about Speciality Beer, well initially Belgian Beer. This was after the seeds had been sown with the truly remarkable New World Guide to Beer (1988), by Michael Jackson (1942-) (www.beerhunter.com), and then receiving a copy of Michael's Pocket Book of Beer (the 2000 edition is ISBN 1840002522) as a Christmas present. Michael raved about a famous Antwerp bar in this book. John thus made it his first port of call. He had acquainted himself with Michael's star rating system, and was resolved to spend the evening drinking his "World Classics". He found the beers sampled so good it was daft. His life was transformed. With regard to Gueuze, and the 1976 postcard mentioned above, John is now a huge fan of the artisanal varieties of this unique Belgian Beer style, as exemplified by those produced by the likes of Cantillon (www.cantillon.be and White Beer Travels Web page), in Brussels, and by 3 Fonteinen (www.3fonteinen.be), in nearby Beersel.

Your cursor is on a photo of John White, of White Beer Travels, with the world's most famous beer writer, Michael Jackson and Fred Eckhardt, the 'Hero of the Beer Revolution' according to Michael. Click on the photo to go to Michael's essential website

The above photo was taken by Joyce White at CAMRA's Great British Beer Festival, in London, in August, 2004. On the left is the world's most famous beer writer, Michael Jackson (1942-); on the right is renowned beer and sake writer, Fred Eckhardt from Portland, USA, the "Hero of the Beer Revolution", Michael was to declare at a tutored tasting, that took place shortly after the photo was taken. John is holding a beer mat/coaster for the Gasthausbrauerei Ambräusianum (www.ambraeusianum.de), a Brew Pub that had opened the day before, in the wonderful Baroque city of Bamberg, in Germany, which he had visited a few days previously; click here for more details. After the photo was taken John handed the mat to Michael, along with an information pack on the Brew Pub that he had prepared. Click here for a White Beer Travels Web page covering this tasting, and here to see the ticket for the tasting, on which Michael has written: "To John, Thanks for Bamberg! Michael Jackson". The seventy-seven page White Beer Travels Guide to Bamberg is available from the Downloads page. During the GBBF tasting, Michael remarked that a short story by Dylan Thomas, called "Old Garbo", contained by far the best description of someone relishing a Pint of Beer that he had ever come across. This story is one of a number in a book called Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog, which is available from www.amazon.com and www.amazon.co.uk. Click here for a White Beer Travels Web page covering this tasting, which contains the appropriate part of the text of "Old Garbo".

Prior to his foreign beer awakening, John had previously organised trips to, for example, Lincolnshire breweries Batemans (www.bateman.co.uk) and Highwood (Tom Wood's) (www.tom-wood.com), which are close to Grimsby where he lives. But with his increasing interest in Specialty Beer, it was inevitable that he would organise a trip overseas. Hence the first trip to Belgium, in 1993, based in Bruges. Such trips have taken place every year since, countries covered including Germany, France, The Netherlands, The Czech Republic and the USA (Chicago and New Orleans). Click on Past Beer Hunts for more details of these. John has also carried out reconnaissance trips in Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Austria, Australia, Singapore and Colorado, the USA's Specialty Beer (Craft Beer) State. This groundwork could materialise into future Beer Hunts. Details of these "Recce Trips" can be found by clicking here. He has also organised and conducted trips in the reverse direction, for example, when organising a trip for Dutch Home Brewers to London.

Whilst holding down a job with Total (www.total.com), a major French oil company, the amount of time available to organise and conduct trips was limited, but following his retirement from Total, in June, 2003, John now runs more Beer Hunts each year, hence the launch of this website in 2002. He is also available for consultancy work in the fields of Process Control and DCS (Distributed Control Systems). For further information on John's career as a Control Engineer in industry, click on John's General CV (Curriculum Vitæ / Résumé), here, or at the bottom of the page, to download it to your PC (it is in ".pdf" format, see the Downloads page). John's Detailed Career History is also available.

Whilst with Total, John worked for lengthy periods in France, including Paris. His seventy-eight page guide to this city, which is available from the Downloads page of the website, is by far the most comprehensive guide available covering Speciality Beer in Paris. It appears in a very abridged form in the best book on French beer in any language, The Beers of France (ISBN 0952923831), by Woods and Rigley, and in the related website, www.frenchbeer.info, which matches the book's quality. Other books that John has contributed to include those covering West Flanders and South West Netherlands & Beyond by fellow Beer Hunt organiser Simon van Tromp (see www.beertraveller.com for more details of these excellent books and Simon's trips, and also Simon's blog site), and Tim Webb's Good Beer Guide Belgium. The 5th edition of the latter, which one should not enter Belgium without, came out in May, 2005. John's contribution to the Guide, which included eighteen photographs, as well as bar and brewery information, is acknowledged on the acknowledgments page, and on page 25, White Beer Travels is featured; click here for a White Beer Travels review of Tim's Guide. John also did some acknowledged proof reading of LambicLand LambikLand, a 2004 book on Lambic brewers, blenders and bars, that Tim has produced with fellow Beer Hunt organiser, Chris (Podge) Pollard. More details of this book are to be found on Tim's "books about beer" website, www.booksaboutbeer.com, and in a White Beer Travels Web page featuring it. The book can be purchased from Tim's site along with his Good Beer Guide Belgium, which can also be purchased from CAMRA, from www.amazon.co.uk, or from  www.amazon.com.

Your cursor is on a reproduction of the cover of 'The Beers of France'. There is an equally outstanding  companion book by the same authors, covering the French-speaking half of Belgium: 'The Beers of Wallonia'.  Click on the image to go to a website,  which is an on-line version of both books; it is regularly updated
Your cursor is on a reproduction of two of Simon van Tromp's guides. Thoroughly researched on the ground, Simon's guides have places the other guides have not yet reached! Click here for Simon's website
Your cursor is on a reproduction of the cover of Tim Webb's 'Good Beer Guide to Belgium'. It is essential reading before, during and after a trip to Belgium, and/or selected places in London and the rest of the UK.  Click on it to go to Tim Webb's website
Your cursor is on a photo taken in The Victoria, a Real Ale Mecca, at 6 Union Road, Lincoln, in the English County of Lincolnshire. Click on the photo, to go to The Victoria's website

In the photo to the left, which was taken by Joyce White, in May, 2002, Tim Webb is appraising John of the progress on an  edition of his Good Beer Guide to Belgium & Holland that was published in November, 2002, see above.

The venue is The Victoria (www.victoriapub.net), in Lincoln, England (6 Union Road, LN1 3BJ, GPS: 53.235985o N, 0.542793o W), hence the picture of Queen Victoria (1819-1901) above Tim's head. "The Vic" was in the Tyne Mill chain (www.tynemill.co.uk), in England, until being taken over by Batemans, in 2007.

All the pubs in the Tynemill chain are very special. Many have foreign Specialty Beers, particularly Belgian ones, including The Vic, which is the nearest one to Grimsby, where John lives. Batemans are maintaining this policy, following their acquisition of the place, and also stock beers from the Tynemill subsidiary, Castle Rock Brewery (www.castlerockbrewery.co.uk).


In Breweries or beer-related visits in France and in French-speaking Belgium, John has acted as an interpreter. Indeed, he has done this role in Germany using the German he picked up whilst working in Germany and Switzerland as a student. His German has unfortunately taken a turn for the worse; learning French has knocked quite a bit of it out of his head. A ten-month assignment in The Netherlands has given him sufficient knowledge of Dutch/Flemish to read beer bottle labels and more! Whilst there, he lived in the marvellous town of Middelburg, in the Province of Zeeland. It was no coincidence, of course, that his flat there was only a 100 metres (yards) from De Mug, (www.demug.nl) one of The Netherlands' finest Speciality Beer bars, click here for John's Pub of the Month write-up on the place.

John carries out translation work from French into his mother tongue. His specialist knowledge of beer and the brewing process has resulted in commissions from the likes of Heineken and Orval (www.orval.be and White Beer Travels Web page). An example of John's translation work is to be found on the website for the Bruxellensis Festival (www.festivalbruxellensis.be), a beer festival that is held in the Belgian capital of Brussels. The English pages on this website are John's translations of its French pages. For further details of John's translation service, click on Service de Traduction (Translation Service), here, or on the buttons at the top or bottom of this page.

John is married to Joyce, who was converted to Real Ale by the great Timothy Taylor's Landlord (www.timothy-taylor.co.uk), but now also loves the truly outstanding Specialty Beers from Belgium, such as Westvleteren 12o (ABT) (www.sintsixtus.be, White Beer Travels Web page), La Chouffe (www.achouffe.be), and Boon Framboise and Kriek (www.boon.be). John and Joyce have a daughter and a son and a grandson and a granddaughter, the latter having been born in November, 2003; click here for more information.

As can be seen above, John is a member of the French beer consumers' organisation, Les Amis de la Bière [du Nord-Pas-de-Calais] (The Friends of Beer, amis.biere.org) and its Belgian, Dutch and UK national counterparts: Zythos (www.zythos.be and White Beer Travels Web page), PINT (www.pint.nl) and CAMRA (www.camra.org.uk) respectively. As stated above, he is also on the committee of the British Guild of Beer Writers (www.beerwriters.co.uk), and is the guild's trip organiser, and is a member of La Guilde des tâte-bière (Beer Tasting Guild [of the Belgian Beer Museum in Lustin], www.museebieresbelges.centerall.com). In the ceremony featured in the photo above, he became an Esward d'Honneur de la Ghilde des Eswards Cervoisiers (Honorary Taster of the [French] Beer Tasters' Guild), which is the inner circle of Les Amis de la Bière. Click on the links in this paragraph or on the icons below to get to these organisations' websites.

Your cursor is on the Zythos logo. Zythos, the  'Confederatie van Belgische Objectieve Bierproevers' (Confederation of Belgian Objective Beer Tasters), is Belgium's premier  beer consumers' organisation.  Click on the logo, to go to their website
Your cursor is on the PINT logo. PINT, the 'Promotie Informatie Traditioneel Bier' (Promotion & Information on Traditional Beer), is The Netherlands premier beer consumers' organisation. Click on the logo to go to the PINT website
Your cursor is on Les Amis de la Bière's logo. Les Amis de la Bière / Ghilde des Eswards Cervoisiers (Beer Tasters' Guild) is France's best known beer consumers' organisation. Click on the logo to go to their website
Your cursor is on the logo of The British Guild of Beer Writers. Click on it to go to their website
Your cursor is on the CAMRA logo. CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, is the UK's premier beer consumers' organisation.  Click on the logo, to go to the CAMRA website

John White, Your cursor is on an image of John White's e-mail address. Click on it to send an e-mail to John.

Back to Top

Belgian Beer, just about the world's most renowned Speciality Beer is promoted on this website, along with great beer from all over the world
Home Contents News Future Past Recces General Month John's General CV Archives Downloads Links Contacts Build Translations