What is your earliest memory of drinking tins?
Jake Hawkes: Aged about 15, taking a few cans of Stella from the garden shed where the booze was kept and drinking it on the green – strict curfew of 11pm, no exceptions
Myles J Burrell: At my cousin’s house party for their 12th birthday, I was also 12.
Josh Boyd: Mate’s bedroom. Few of us crammed in there with a few crates of whatever was on offer in the big supermarket. My mate’s Dad was one of those parents who’d drive you to get the booze, and even chip in a little. Most probably to keep us wandering around on the street. He was a very good man (and a Chelsea fan so another plus for me), and unfortunately went far before his time. Whenever I get a big crate from a supermarket he always creeps into my head.
Chris Curran: Probably around 14-15. Grew up with an Irish father and the Irish side of my family were never shy about allowing the kids a drink or two and at family parties we’d be allowed a few cans. To be fair probably set me up for life with a good tolerance, that is now probably too good.
What is your favourite tin, and why do you rate it so much?
JH: Orangeboom, for two reasons: One, it was always the cheapest tin at the shop near my house, so I’ve developed a fond attachment for it. Two, nobody else really bothers with it so you can always tell if someone has nicked your booze at a party.
MJB: Brand: Stella. It’s not my favourite beer but it’s my favourite tin. Real ones understand the difference. Location/type: Train tin. An absolutely elite tin.
JB: I like to let the day lead the way when picking, but my stalwart favourite is Stella. That’s become ingrained in me for whatever reason. The taste is good no matter what the snobs say, and even more so when the can’s ice cold and it’s boiling outside. Also, smart and neat design, while I have a weird love for foreign things that become completely tied up in British culture.
CC: Would have to say Pabst Blue Ribbon. It is to be fair just an average lager (but I grew up in the 90s when lager was king) however it was the beer that finally made me understand why and how my cousins in America could just drink coke can size beers all day without getting smashed. If I want to get fucked up then Red Stripe for reals.
Someone says “tins” what are the first three words you think of?
JH: Cold. Fizzy. Cheap.
MJB: Yes. Shop. Cold.
JB: Bag. Office. Fridge.
CC: BAG. OF. CANS.
Who is the person you’d most like to drink tins with and why, be they alive now or historical?
JH: I’d like to kick back on a sunny saturday afternoon and share a tin with Kurt Vonnegut, who seems to have been the right blend of intelligent and ready to party – either him or David Byrne, but he might need a couple before he really relaxed into it
MJB: Ray Parlour. The bloke is an Arsenal legend that loves a drink.
JB: Terry Pratchett. Absolutely love the man, and I get quite sad thinking about the latter years of his life. I genuinely believe he’s one of the best British writers in history, and most likely the funniest. I can guarantee he’d have good taste in cans. I’d give a lot to get a bit beery with him and listen to him talk about whatever he wanted. GNU Terry Pratchett.
CC: I think I’d have to say Brian Clough because I bet he’d have some cracking stories.
What is your favourite occasion for drinking tins and why?
JH: Nothing beats a fridge full of tins at a friend’s house, with about 8 or 9 other people there.
MJB: Train tins. You just cannot beat train tins, they make the journey more pleasant, they regulate your body temperature and it usually makes whatever you’re doing post-train a lot more enjoyable. Park tins are second, followed by beach and road tins respectively.
JB: Train all the way. Not only ’cause it reminds me of away days, but because on a train you can forget about everything. You’re hurtling around in a metal tube, you’re responsible for nothing, you can’t do anything about anything. You’re forced to relax and enjoy the journey. That with a few cans? Bliss.
CC: They all have their place, but recently it has to be park tins. They have become such a staple of my existence during this pandemic that I think I’ll be sad when the weather becomes too cold for them again.
What one tin would you ban from existence?
MJB: Not a brand, but the “shit, I need to neck this room temperature tin very quickly” tin. It’s usually a product of poor tin and time management. That being said, the “I’m not sure this is my tin” tin is pretty awful, and now we’re in the midst of a pandemic, it might actually be worse than the “shit, I need to neck this room temperature tin very quickly” tin.
JB: Carling. Ban the whole fucking drink.
Do you agree that all offie tins (non pint size) should be mix-and-match four for five quid, no exceptions?
JH: Need a split system I reckon. All your standard lagers in the bargain, but some more exciting choices at a higher mark-up, just to make sure shops benefit from stocking them. I want cheap beer, but I also want the chance to drink Greece’s number one lager, if possible.
MJB: I mean, I guess having that option would be nice, but I don’t know why you’d want to mix and match, tins are not pick-n-mix. However, the 4 for £5 deal should be in all offies nationwide.
JB: Yes. Even if the idea of that makes me sad 6-for-a-fiver cans are long gone (RIP).
CC: Completely. Start a petition.
Pints are expensive, are tins the true egalitarian choice?
JH: Yes, and that’s why beers that don’t come in tins (looking at you, Peroni) are for estate agents and wankers only.
JB: Agree, but also because of the amount of choice too. To me, that’s the most important part of tins.
Finally, you’re in the shop, you’ve got your tins, you’ve got enough change for a bag of crisps, what are you grabbing?
MJB: Walkers Thai sweet chili Sensations.
CC: McCoys ready salted preferably.