The second SIBA Great Northern Beer Festival is well under way and will be reaching its climax today. Last year’s event was, frankly, a bit of a damp squib with too little publicity and too much focus on the appearance of Hugh & Oz. The result was less than satisfactory for all concerned.
This year’s event should prove a lot better. The festival is at the Mercure (ex Ramada) Piccadilly which, for my money, is a better venue location and facilities wise. The publicity level was ramped up and numbers on the opening night were up on last year. Certainly the choice is unrivalled; 64 beers on handpump and with sparkler-what more could you want?
Sadly, there was some disappointment on the Thursday evening as several beers performed under par. Earlier favourites such as Allgates Double Citra soon disappeared and fans of hoppy beer were left somewhat flummoxed. However, a late surge did hold out some hope for future sessions (hopefully today) with Saltaire Stateside IPA being in particularly good form.
Alas, as per last year, I didn’t get any pictures of Tandleman working-I’m not that quick. However, I did get to have an enjoyable drink and a chat with Erlangernick, and the mighty Hardknott Sooty who was accompanied by his two handlers, Dave and Anne.
Congratulations to Hawkshead for winning the champion beer trophy with their Windermere Pale. A well deserved win for an incredible beer.