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Craft Beer World Cup: The Favourites – Brazil

Brazil World CupAre you enjoying the football? You aren’t the only ones! News broke that there could be a beer shortage (a crisis in our minds!) as demand is so high. Harry Kane’s last minute winner might be held responsible for this. The World Cup isn’t just about the football, it brings the world together and what is the best way to share culture? Beer! With Brazil being tournament favourites we thought we’d check in to the Brazil craft beer scene.

Brazil might best be associated with diversity, colour, carnivals, cocktails and Latino culture but it’s climate and resources offer the opportunity to brew vibrant beers, best enjoyed cold on warm, humid days.

Brazil craft beer has had a growth spurt, these days it’s widely available throughout the country from supermarkets to ‘hipster bars’ (yep, there’s hipsters in Brazil too!) and restaurants, offering Brazilians many opportunities to grab a decent beer, brewed with skill.

Brazil Craft Beer OktoberfestThere’s several key breweries that are currently favoured in Brazil, inspired by Europe and America. The European influence can be traced back to the 1800s when German immigrants brought their beer craving with them. This continues today, Brazil’s Oktoberfest is one of the biggest in the world, lasting 18 days, attracting 730,000, proving Brazilians, love beer as much as their carnivals! There’s plenty of other beer festivals that happen in the country which are highly attended.

Although South American beers are yet to have a major impact on the craft beer market, that could be changing thanks to unique ingredients and palettes which have woken up interest from the likes of Brooklyn Brewery and Mikkeller.

Due to the hot weather, hops are hard to come-by and importing can be expensive making brewers think more creatively. Dia da Cerveja Imura is an event that produces some of the most diverse beers in the world as no yeast, hops or water are allowed! What makes the taste unique is that many breweries are ageing beers in barrels previously used for tropical spirits.

The wealth of natural ingredients can be found in many pints including Amazon Beer, who use passion fruits and coffee can be tasted in Cervejaria Colorado’s iconic Demoiselle.

2cabecas Brazil Craft Beer2cabecas are the brewery you’d hope for in Brazil, their passionfruit IPA and Funk IPA have that tropical taste, from one mouthful you are ready to party.

4 years might not seem long but in craft beer times it can be like a lifetime and Hocus Pocus have become well established in South America with Belgian golden ale, Magic Trap and their American pale ales.

Nina JeffreyJeffrey, from Rio de Janeiro are on of the most recognisable breweries in the country, two of their most popular beers are influenced by Europe, Nina, brewed like a Belgian white beer and their Pilsen has a familiarity to Germany. Three Monkeys, also from Rio offer something a little different with their popular Wit Vezpa, an Indian white beer.

Three Monkeys Brazil Craft BeerSao Paulo is Brazil’s most cosmopolitan city and the heart of craft beer scene. Cervejaria Nacionak are one of the front runners thanks to their citrus Mula IPA, guaranteed to bring the party to life, coming in at 7.5%. The high-rollers in Sao Paulo clearly love their stronger beers as Cervejaria Invicta’s popular imperial stout will leave you buzzing at 10.8%!

Growth in sales and the number of Brazilian craft breweries is growing 40% year-on-year. Who knew the Brazil craft beer scene was as vibrant as their party spirits? It’s probably the reason Neymar is always falling over! There’s plenty of football left, it’s best watched with a beer in the hand, our bottle shop at Ecclesall Ale Club is fully stocked with beers from around the world.

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Craft Beer World Cup: The Hosts – Russia

Russia World CupYou might have heard, there’s a football thing happening right now. Football is great but it’s much better with a nice pint in your hand. This years World Cup is being hosted in Russia, everybody’s favourite worst enemy. If they aren’t trying to poison people they are probably downing their finest vodka, but wait, there’s more to Russia than killing off spies or vodka, the Russia craft beer scene is booming right now.

If you are heading to the World Cup you don’t need to pack your suitcase with cans of your favourite beer on the 2,0000 mile trip, they have some great bars and breweries. Don’t fancy risking your life in planet Putin to taste what the Russian’s are brewing, they export too!

Unlike many, Russia’s craft beer scene revolves around the darker side of a pint, the stouts and the porters, which kind of suits the perception of the country. Tropical pales can get lost when drank in the countries cold weather and winter warming food.

The Russia craft beer inspirations can be traced back to London in the late 1600’s when Russian tsar, Peter the Great enjoyed stouts and porters drank by the dockworkers. Ever since, Russia brewers have continued to take influence from Britain but switching it up a level, as in, making the ABV higher, again this keeps in line with the stern Russian perception. The Russian Imperial Stout was born.

Soviet Russia (1922 – 1991) saw restraints on the availability of ingredients, making drink habits change. Vodka and mainstream lager became much more accessible but since the turn of this century the Russia craft beer was revived and their dark beers saw the light again!

Af Brew RussiaThe scene has grown fast, craft beer bars, shops and breweries have been popping up across the vast country. AF Brew from St Petersburg were the first to excite Russian’s with a pale ale whilst Rule Taproom and Craft RePUBlic in Moscow showcase the countries best breweries which are devise and unique. Jawsspot is one of the most successful breweries in Russia, their pale ale can be found all over.

Rule Taproom Russia Craft BeerSt Petersburg plays a key role in the Russia craft beer scene, it’s the home of Stepan Razin (no longer on operation) and Vena, Russia’s first breweries were founded here whilst tap rooms and microbreweries can be found throughout the city including Redrum and Bakunin Brewery.

Russia might not have the best reputation as a holiday destination but that can all change after the World Cup which seems to be going smoothly so far… It’s got an interesting history, great buildings and from the sounds, a vibrant and growing craft beer movement. It’s the third biggest producer of beer in the world.

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Barcelona Craft Beer is One to Watch

Barcelona is best known for tapas, wine, pick pocketers and art but the Barcelona craft beer scene is growing fast and it’s not hard to see why!

The city offers more than most as it’s not only a vibrant hub with an iconic past but also a creative future. What makes it unique is its surroundings, greenery and the sea. This, along with the climate gives the food and drink real authenticity as natural ingredients are readily available and seasonal. Those vineyards are gifted with its resources, the reason their wine tastes so good. They have started to use this to make exciting beers which are largely influenced by America but you can taste the Mediterranean twist.

Black Lab BarcelonaIn the last few years breweries have been appearing in Barcelona. Black Lab, the first tap room in the city is situated right by the sea, the perfect location for the freshest ingredients. It is a real gem for beer lovers, whether local or tourist. At Black Lab you’ll find a range of beers and beer infused cocktails, they brew and experiment onsite but they also collaborate with breweries from around the world. Barcelona is full of great food but if you’re enjoying the beer too much then eat in!

NaparBCN Barcelona Craft BeerBlack Lab is perfect for capturing tourists but if you’re looking for something a bit more ‘Barcelona’ then head to Eixample. You’ll be in beer heaven as local bars have embraced the craft beer trend whilst the area also has BrewDog and Mikkeller bars. NaparBCN is something special. It’s a classy place, not a dirty tap and their beers are just as good as the marbled interior. Initially, NaparBCN was going to be a restaurant, celebrating the city’s best ingredients, as the Barcelona craft beer scene developed the guys behind the food saw that they might as well make the beer if they are making the food.

Edge BrewingAway from the centre there’s Edge Brewing. Founded by two Americans, Edge have capitalised on the new craft trend, using their experience and local ingredients to produce wow-factor beer.

Other cool places offering the best in Barcelona craft beer include Olgod in Raval and the wonderfully named Bollocks Bar in the Gothic Quarter.

As cities go, Barcelona is relatively cheap, like most, craft beers can get pricey but you will be pleasantly surprised when the bill comes. You don’t really need an excuse to visit but if you do, make it a tasting trip. There’s more to Barcelona beer than Estrella.

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Guest Brewery #5 Cloudwater

CloudwaterHow much is too much for a pint? It wasn’t that long ago when us northerners would avoid London beer prices. £3? Na, I’m happy up hear, thanks. What about £13? Last year Cloudwater, possibly the most hyped craft beer brewery around hit the headlines with their £13 pint in London. Sadly it’s not only London where you’re paying more than a tenner. Is this Cloudwater’s fault? Is there more to the story than the headline and, most importantly, would you pay it?

No. Yes. The third question needs to be rephrased. Are the short answers. Let’s dig a little deeper…

You are reading this because you have an interest in good beer. You don’t need to be sold to but there’s more reasons behind the price than just hype or a label but the hype doesn’t help, especially for the likes of Cloudwater. The Manchester brewery have only been going for a few years, they are relatively small but they’ve had to grow up fast and that, in itself doesn’t come cheap. They are also small in terms of the amount of beer they can brew and when you’re making headlines, whether for good or bad, you are going to be in demand. They have had to hike prices up to keep to high standards and to slow down the demand.

Breweries don’t get into it to make lots of money, they want to make beer they love and that’s why people like what we do, we want to be proud about the product. A hand brewed beer, made with love, care and the best ingredients is incomparable to a pint of lager made on mass, by machines with low quality ingredients. You can find yourself paying a fiver for that anyway. With some craft beers, like the famed 9% double IPA we’ve got to change our mindset and think of it like you would a good bottle of decent wine, then the price doesn’t seem that bad. You wouldn’t buy a pint of wine and you probably shouldn’t buy a pint of this either, you’d be steaming. You get what you pay for.

Who are Cloudwater and why should you give a shit? The name might be kind of new (established 2015) but the brewers certainly aren’t. They’ve been making (and drinking) beers for years now so it’s not just some amateurs, jumping in on the bandwagon Nathan Barely style. They pride themselves on using seasonal ingredients which not only ensures that they have the ability to make beers in their prime but they can continually change their range. They are always tweaking their recipes as they look for improvements. Cloudwater’s signature Double IPA has evolved over the last two years as the brewers have gained new inspirations, it’s currently at v3.1. They are the Heston Blumenthal of beer; adventurous, innovative, sometimes daring but it’s the end result that really matters.

Based in the centre of Manchester, underneath Piccadilly train station arches (their tap room is worth a visit), Alphabet Brewery and Chorlton Brewery are their neighbours. Sheffield might be the beer capital but Manchester is becoming a strong competitor!

What’s your budget for a good pint? Or half? Or a third? What about a glass of wine with your meal? Probably about the same. And, five quid for a pint of shitty lager or a third of something decent? Think of it like a treat, rather than a session drink, there’s plenty of other great beers to choose from after your tastebuds have been tantalised by Cloudwater anyway.

They aren’t in the worlds top 15 breweries in the world for the sake of it.

For more information on Cloudwater, visit their website. Want to taste what all the fuss is about? Pop into the Ale Club, if it’s not on tap, you’ll find some cans in the fridge to drink in or take home.

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Equity for Punks

BrewdogNot another BrewDog blog? Yes, but there’s a reason, two or 75,000 Equity for Punks. For the experienced craft beer taster you might not have touched BrewDog in years, since you found something more niche. It’s probably too mainstream or cliche. Unfortunately their success has led to a backlash but that’s the British for you, always ready to pounce on anybody doing well. I’m pretty sure the Scottish brewers don’t mind upsetting a few people, that has been part of their success and their Equity for Punks campaign shows that they still have a loyal army behind them.

Equity for PunksThis week the Equity for Punks AGM takes place in Aberdeen. This isn’t a boring meeting about ticking boxes in a stuffy office with middle aged men wearing ill-fitting suits. BrewDog have been successful because of investments, not from wealthy businessmen from Dubai who have never tasted an IPA but from their drinkers, over 75,000 of them have invested £55 million in total, breaking the fourth wall between business and consumer. Their crowdfunding campaigns are unique and give customers a voice, their reward, is one hell of a party in the city that is becoming better known for brewing than oil these days.

I am PunkIn the past decade BrewDog has challenged the craft beer industry (notably CAMRA), mainstream alcohol manufactures and tastebuds. Punk, the American influenced IPA is their flagship beer, it was their breakthrough and continues it’s legacy, it’s inspired new brewers, converted lager drinkers to craft beer and it’s found in supermarkets but there’s so much more to BrewDog than Punk.

Putin BrewDogTheir controversial marketing campaigns have helped build exposure, ‘all press is good press’ has certainly been a mindset that BrewDog has taken. The tongue-in-cheek Pink campaign, mocking other brands who use patronising female cliches was misunderstood by many, as was the anti-Putin/pro-gay beer. They celebrated one crowdfunding success by dropping ‘fat cat’ taxidermy from a helicopter over London.

BrewDog End of HistoryThe investments have allowed them to increase their Aberdeen brewery and expand globally. With more brewing opportunities they are able to be more creative, not just in marketing but in their beers too. Their core range is constantly growing and becoming more and more available but it’s their specials which make BrewDog beers interesting, maybe ‘The End of History’, the worlds strongest beer 55% was more of a publicity stunt than something to drink but it was there to prove a point.

BrewDog LoneWolf GinThe presence of BrewDog is increasing too. It wasn’t long ago when pubs were closing down at a rapid rate in the UK, however BrewDog bars have been doing the opposite and opening on high-streets around the world. It’s the fastest growing food and drinks company in the UK, they have also moved into the gin (LoneWolf) and vodka market and as a company they are worth over £1bn, not bad for a couple of home brewers wanting to make a decent pint.

The BrewDog story began like most craft brewers, home brewing, D.I.Y. style, that hobby in 2005 shifted into something ground breaking, a 21st century business model that shows that the world doesn’t need to give in to corporates, like punk did. The business moved from a garage to a warehouse in 2007 and the first beer to be brewed was Punk.

Equity for Punks 2018The Equity for Punks AGM is a ticketed event for the shareholders and they get snapped up immediately. Why? Well, beer, music and food, the perfect collaboration. 7000 Equity for Punks will get a business talk from the owners (it is business after all and there’s always a lot going on at BrewDog), once the numbers have been crunched there’s a great line-up of music including Paws, The Big Moon and Maximo Park. Obviously there’s plenty of beer available too.

Why can’t all businesses run like this?

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Craft Beer in the UK is reaching out to a new audience

Is there a bitter taste is the mouth for craft beer in the UK or is it just evolving?

The craft beer in the UK market is seeing a new shift, a shift even further away from your grandads bitter than ever before. This is due to accessibility and the adaptation of mainstream, taking it from sub-culture to urban culture. The perception of beer is changing, IPAs are gradually winning over lager drinkers, there has never been so much choice. It wasn’t long ago that you’d struggle to find an IPA, it’s hard to avoid Brewdog these days.

Brewdog pinkThe Scottish brewers recently hit the headlines with two campaigns, the ‘Pink’ launch (reaching out to women) and their 1 million giveaway, a ploy to target the Carling crowd. They hope that a free pint of Punk will turn them into paying customers. It isn’t just on paper where Brewdog have been dominating, you’ll find them in the unlikeliest of places, the bars and clubs that wouldn’t have entertained anything other than your standard lager just a few months are now stocking Punk. Music festivals were once a lager filled weekend, Carling used to sponsor Reading and Leeds, these days they are offering craft alternatives. This could be because they can charge more money or that tastes are changing?

Many will argue about Brewdog’s presence in craft beer. They are bit like Man City, they do the job flawlessly but they’ve done it with investment, lots of it. They still claim that they continue with the craft mentality, they continue to take chances, grow. They have been able to break into the mainstream which can only be a great thing for the whole industry. The more people who taste Punk are the next ones who will buy Jaipur, Gamma Ray or High Wire, once hooked there’s no turning back.

There’s a new hierarchy forming, it was noticeable at Sheffield Beer Week. Is it just about investment and marketing or is it quality and innovation? We’ve got the elite brewers (Brewdog, Beavertown, Goose Island), the local heroes (every city has them), the old schoolers, the breakthrough home brewers and the underdogs who are a bit left wing.

Bitter about bitter, or lack of? Real ale was, up until recently what your granddad drank, that murky, still, warm liquid in a pint class. It wasn’t sexy like your pint of Bud. Bitter is the reason beer gets a bad reputation. The pale ales have been changing that perception, the fruity aromas are much more palatable on the tastebuds making it much easier to convert lager drinkers, it makes brewing a better business model.

The UK craft beer scene might be growing but with all the focus on developing and twisting the IPA, the bitter has been forgotten about by many new breweries. The old men who spend their afternoons in the pub are finding it hard to jump on the craft beer bandwagon. They don’t care about the artwork, if it’s suitable for Vegans or made with ingredients sourced locally, they just want the bitter taste that they have always loved and change from £3. They don’t care for Man City’s slick techniques, forward thinking attitudes and big money innovations, they are happy with Burnley’s solid reputation, it might not be exciting but it works.

Is brewing becoming more about spreadsheets and sales figures or is there true love in that 330ml can that costs £8? They’ll always be businesses in any industry but it’s those who work with passion who will succeed in the long-term. What makes craft beer in the UK great in 2018 is that there’s a taste and budget for everybody.

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Guide to Sheffield Beer Week 2018

Sheffield Beer WeekIt’s almost our favourite week of the year, we’ve been putting our plans together to make sure there’s no logistical mishaps. Not gonna lie, we’ve had to flip coins to decide what to do because there’s so much good stuff going on. Yep, Sheffield Beer Week, we are ready for you.

Sheffield Beer Week launchIt all kicks off on Saturday at the Abbeydalee Picture House on Abbeydale Road with the Indie Beer Feast, celebrating the cities greatest things, independent businesses, food and beer.

They’ll be drinking from then on, through to the next weekend. It might sound like one big piss up and to a degree it is but it’s also about sampling the best of beer in 2018. Whether you want to call it craft beer or real ale, just grab a glass and enjoy the breweries showcasing their work in pubs throughout the city.

Hardywood CraftThe beer resurgence here in the UK owes a lot to the States and the Hop Hideout on Abbeydale Road is showcasing beers from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery from midday. If you are heading to the Indie Beer Feast get down early and nip across the road for a taster, or just go down anyway, The Broadfield is next door! The Indie Beer Feast is a ticketed event and they’ve got some of the best local and UK breweries and street food chefs to kick your tastebuds into gear for the rest of Sheffield Beer Week.

Wellington Sheffield Beer WeekWe don’t have time for hangovers especially on day two when award winner beer writer Adrian Tierney-Jones is hosting a tasting evening for the best of Norwich beers at The Wellington in Shalesmoor. Prepare to be schooled.

Monday’s are the worst, not in Beer Week they aren’t. It’s meet the brewer time at Brewdog with Steel City Brewing’s Dave who will be talking about his craft and a taste of their Sheffield Brewery Week special, Rogue One, a 10% imperial stout with a hint of chocolate, vanilla and citrus.

If the 10% stout hasn’t written us off we’ll be heading to the train station, not to escape but for the Sheffield Tap to see how The Tapped Brew Co make their beers before joining the Sheffield Pub Heritage Walk which starts at Fagans at 5:30.

Sheffield Beer Week Beavertown TakeoverThere’s no hump day during Sheffield Beer Week as Wednesday sets us up for another busy one, starting off with another meet the brewer event at Brewdog at 6pm, this time its Lost Industry who will be bringing their exclusive imperial white stout, Off Me Coconut along then at 7:30pm it’s time to head to Hallamshire House for meet the brewer with London’s finest, Beavertown!

Thursday we’ll be starting off with a battle of the sours with locals Abbeydale Brewery against Manchester faves Charlton Brewery at The Devonshire Cat before heading to The Bath Hotel for another brewery from the other side of the Pennines, Marble Brewery who’ll be taking part in a meet the brewer.

Brew York Sheffield Beer WeekBrew York are frequent on the Ale Club bar and we’re looking forward to their meet the brewer event at Riverside on Friday before heading to The Bar Stewards for a Northern Monk takeover.

Saturday will be another Kelham orientated day with the Cloudwater and Howling Hops takeover at Shakespeares, Unfortunately all good things have to come to an end but theres a silver lining at the Sheffield Beer Week closing party which coincides with launch of the Neepsend Brewery tap room opening!

Gladiators, ready?

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Mother’s Day on Ecclesall Road

What’s going on for Mother’s Day on Ecclesall Road?

Mother’s Day is approaching (March 11th!) and there’s plenty of ways to treat your mum in Sheffield, especially on Ecclesall Road. Here’s our tips for Mother’s Day on Ecclessall Road.

Where to eat for Mother’s Day on Ecclesall Road.

Grazr InnGraze Inn

If the weather is nice then you might not want to spend the afternoon/evening indoors, Graze Inn cover this with their Mother’s Day brunch menu.

More derails here.

Whirlowbrook Hall

Alternatively enjoy an afternoon at Whirlowbrook Hall. Finger sandwiches, scones and tea on offer between 12pm and 3pm, want to up your gifting game? Upgrade to the Champagne option!

More details here.

PoWPrince of Wales

When you want pub grub that’s a bit special then book in at the Prince of Wales. Their Mother’s Day 3 course special is £23.95 and if it’s as good as it sounds, you will be the favourite child!

More details available here.

Miller and Carter

If your mum likes meat executed with perfection then book in with Miller and Carter who excel when it comes to steak.

More details here.

Bistrot Pierre Mother's Day on Ecclesall RoadBistrot Pierre

You can’t go wrong with French food when it’s done well and Bistrot Pierre do exactly that. Their 3 course Mother’s Day special is just £19.95 and there’s plenty to choose from.

More details here.

Brocco On The Park

Hopefully the snow will have cleared by Mother’s Day because there’s nothing better than a stroll around Endcliffe Park in the spring sunshine, then a meal at Brocco On The Park.

More details here. 

Don’t forgot to drop into the Ale Club, we have wine, cider, spirits and software drinks for the mum’s who don’t like a beer and if they do, our cans and bottles make the perfect gift!

 

P.S. Don’t forget to vote for the Ale Club as best new bar at the Exposed Magazine Awards. Get involved here.

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Sheffield Beer Week – Guide to Sheffield Breweries Round 2

Sheffield Beer WeekImagine a week dedicated to your number one. Your partner only gets Valentines Day but beer gets a whole week in Sheffield! Sheffield Beer Week is seven days dedicated to the finest beers served across the Steel City.

Sheffield Beer Week doesn’t just showcase great breweries from around the world with events hosted in great pubs, it’s an opportunity to meet the makers, listen to their back story and how they made the beers you are tasting.

Our Tryanuary guide to Sheffield Breweries can be found here. This is round two.

Blue Bee BrewerySince launching in 2010 Blue Bee Brewery have had their ups-and-downs. Things went from a hobby to a respectable brewery by 2011 and they expanded. Last year they lost their 3 pubs but they have continued to brew great and interesting beers using a variety of ingredients from around the world. You’ll find their beers at the Kelham Island Tavern, Shakespeares and the Rutland Arms as well as the Sheffield Beer Week closing party at the Neepsend Brewery tap room launch on 17th March.

More information can be found here.

Lost Industry BrewingLost Industry are relatively babies compared to Blue Bee but in just over two years they have experiments with flavours and influences that have helped them gain an reputation as exiting brewers who don’t limited themselves to a core range. Their beers are found in many of Sheffield’s much loved pus including the Broadfield, Beer Engine and The Greystones. They have spread their wings, supplying to pubs in the UK including Nottingham, Huddersfield, Manchester and London. They will also be available at the launch of Beer Week at the Indie Beer Feast at the Abbeydale Picture House on 10th March.

Want to find out more? Visit their website.

Steel City BrewingSteel City Brewing are cuckoo brewers who are learning fast, producing American influenced pales with a Yorkshire spirit. Their ever-changing selection can be found at the Wellington and Rutland Arms. They will be collaborating with Neepsend Brewery and Lost Industry to create something special for Sheffield Beer Week.

More info on their website.

Tapped Brew CoTrain stations can be bleak. You tend to find W H Smiths, M&S and, if you are lucky you’ll get a ‘spoons. There’s nothing worse than waiting for a train without a pint in your hand. Sheffield Station on the other hand is the home of one of the cities finest boozes, the Sheffield Tap. You’ll always find something special on the bar, probably by the Tapped Brew Co, brewed next door. If you haven’t visited the Sheffield Tap before, it’s worth missing your train for! Why would you want to leave Sheffield anyway? Coming to Sheffield for Beer Week? First stop, the Sheffield Tap. Enjoy.

Interested? More info here.

Mitchell's SheffieldMitchell’s have been a long standing Sheffield business. Starting out as a butchers in 1935, they moved into the alcohol game in the ’60’s, become one of the cities best offies, specialising in wine and spirits. Last year they saw an opportunity and pounced on it when the restaurant next door closed down. The years experience selling alcohol gave them the knowledge to become a micro-brewery and gin distillery. In less than twelve months they have 6 beers available from their well established shop and Sheffield boozers. They regularly host tasting events, not to be missed.

Want to know more? Visit their website.

Regather WorksSheffield is a thoughtful community and the Regather Co-Operative prove that. The not-for-profit venue provides everything from events and gigs to veg box schemes, not only that but they also have an environmentally friendly on-site brewery. The beers, mostly pales are made with locally sourced ingredients, suitable for Vegans.

More info here.

Don’t forget to vote the Ecclesall Ale Club for best new bar at the Exposed Magazine Awards. You can do this here.

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Guest Brewery #3 Vocation Brewery

Vocation Brewery LogoJeez, January was tough, right? Well, we’re in mid-Feb now, we’ve finished gifting for Christmas and Valentines and we are seeing the first signs of spring, exciting! We spent last month embracing Tryanuary, we tasted some lovely beers and Vocation Brewery were one of our favourites. We aren’t even going to be subtle about it, head to the Ecclesall Ale Club and we’ve got their finest  pales on the bar.

If you buy your craft beers from the supermarket then you’re probably aware of Vocation Brewery. The Hebden Bridge brewers have their cans in major supermarkets across the UK and their bold branding stands out. It’s simple but affective. It might be just a black can with a brightly coloured slogan such as ‘Pride & Joy’ or ‘Life & Death’ but it screams “drink me now”.Vocation cans

Not only is it visually appealing but the contents of the can are equally impressive. Like all good brewers, Vocation have found a formula and mastered it, the pales came first (sessions, IPAs, APAs) then they branched out to the Pilsner because there’s always somebody wanting a lager… They brew over 17,000 pints worth of beer a week! Vocation Brewery is relatively young but built with experience as it was founded by John Hickling who previously owned Blue Monkey Brewery in Nottingham.

The IPA is always a great introduction when converting a lager fan to an ale, Brewdog’s Punk, the Jaipur by Thornbridge or the Goose Island IPA tend to be the go to but Vocation’s pales are full of fruity flavours with a hoppy kick that entice the tastebuds without being over-powering and intense.

Vocation at Ale ClubCans from your local supermarket are fine but a freshly pulled pint is far more superior and we currently have Pride & Joy and Bread & Butter on the bar. You really don’t want to miss out.

Who doesn’t love a tab room? Drinking from it’s source is always a winner and Vocation & Co. is a collaboration with locals. They are open 7 days a week in West Yorkshire and if you get hungry, fear not, they have tacos! It’s well worth a day trip, more details on Vocation & Co and Vocation Brewery can be found on their website.