About Me

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Manchester, United Kingdom
Tyson is a beer hound and cheese addict living in the beery metropolis paradise known as Manchester
If the people are buying tears, I'll be rich someday, Ma

Saturday, 6 November 2010

SIBA Northern: First Night Review

Last week saw the SIBA Great Northern Beer Festival at the Palace Hotel in Manchester. The first thing to say is that my impressions are only based on the opening night. I believe things got better and a venture of this size, making its debut, was always bound to have a few teething problems.

So what was it like? Well, the setup was great. 56 handpulls complete with sparkler, naturally, were sat atop the bar. The gimmick of a fresh glass each time was fine, although some old-timers were heard grumbling about it. It did cause a little confusion amongst some of the staff and there had to be the odd reminder that a half pint glass isn’t the same as a pint glass, despite being worth the same deposit.

Slightly surprising was the number of beers that weren’t quite up to scratch. Particularly affected seemed to be the lighter session beers, whilst the darker, stronger, ales seemed more robust. Attendances were disappointing due to poor publicity and some people were put off by the admission prices. However, these are all issues that can and, I believe, are being addressed.

Beer of the session: Iikley Lotus IPA which did do what it said on the tin. And it was worth the entrance fee alone to see Tandleman looking splendorous in his “gay pink” staff uniform. Of course it was really “cerise”. Or so they told him...


RedNev said...

I was put off by the admission price which, along with travel costs, would put me back nearly £20 before my first sip. I've heard mixed reports from friends who were there. The pricing of beer festivals, such as this and Liverpool CAMRA's, is making them into beer drinkers clubs, not campaigning events, which was their original purpose.

ChrisM said...

...which is why one should always volunteer. Good fun, free entry, and a modest amount of free beer. Everyone's a winner (unless the uniform is pink...)

Barry said...

The price certainly put a few people off. £7 is simply too much. I like the fresh glass every time approach although I appreciate not every festival could do that. I mainly stuck to the dark beers which were generally very good. However, several people on my table did complain about some of the light beers such as Elland.

Leigh said...

...Not tried to Lotus yetbut if it's as reliable as the rest of Ililey's beers then it'll be a decent pint. And yes, that shirt is pink. PINK.

Anonymous said...

£7 entry? Fucking rip-off