By in Food

Diary – Wednesday 21st January 2015

After a few tasks I needed to do during the morning and early afternoon, I went to the second annual Manchester Beer And Cider Festival at The Velodrome Cycling centre, which I helped promote through my radio show, especially as the station is among the event’s sponsors.

Access has been greatly improved since the 2014 event and there are beers upstairs as well as down in the lower section, though it still meant lots of yo-yoing up and down stairways with just one direct route available between the decks, and toilets only upstairs.

Beer wise, the choice was enormous. I had half pint glasses of each of the following ten ales.

1/. Conwy – Telford Porter – 5.6%

A slightly smoky strong porter with streaks of caramel and liquorice. 4/5.

2/. Pictish – Tandem 4.2%

My favourite beer of the ten tried. A pale ale brewed specially for the festival. Lovely smooth golden finish with a subtle citrus taste, and combination of different exotic hops. Excellent. 5/5

3/. Two By Two – Monkey Puzzle 4.5%

A less exciting pale ale, possibly suffers from drinking right after one that is so perfect. Monkey Puzzle is perfectly drinkable but rather anti-climactic. 3/5

4/. Sonnet 43 – Bourbon Milk Stout 4.3%

Tastes like a light chocolate milk shake rather than a beer; nice but eccentric. 4/5

5/. Celt, Wiper &True – Rhubeer 4.5%

Even more eccentric – a beer brewed with rhubarb – so much that it tasted like liquidized concentrated rhubarb juice. 3/5

6/. Out There – Space Is The Place 3.5%

Copper coloured, strong aroma, modest hoppiness- not in keeping with the excitement of space adventure promised but a decent light ale anyway. 3/5.

7/. Wiper & True – Milk Shake 5%

Much like Sonnet 43, but this tastes alcoholic with little taste explosions of vanilla as you drink it – terrific. 5/5.

8/. Atom – Schrodinger’s Cat 3.5%

An interesting experimental beer in the true Schrodinger tradition – a light ale designed to capture the flavour of a stronger beer. It works. Maybe in a parallel universe it fails. 5/5

9/. Waen – Chilli Plum Porter 6.1%

I saved two really strong ales for last. The first being this Chilli beer that doesn’t over-power with its chillies or the plums either. 5/5 Tremendous.

10/. Hand Drawn Monkey / Bexar County – Big Wheat (Black Lime & Tamarind) 8.2%

I ended the night with a beer of real bite, citrusy, spicy and strong – a great end to a great first day at the beer festival I hope to revisit on Friday. 5/5

Arthur Chappell

Image Credit » Photo A Manchester Velodrome cyclist gets ready to ride the circuit, taken by me from the beer arena.

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Koalemos wrote on January 22, 2015, 4:42 PM

That is assuming that you have recovered by Friday.

BodieMor wrote on January 22, 2015, 6:02 PM

After the first two my tongue would probably be numb and no good for tasting anymore! Or I'd be asleep!

JustEm wrote on January 22, 2015, 7:13 PM

I very rarely drink alcohol these days, and if I do I like a glass of red wine with a lemonade top.

zabelle51 wrote on January 22, 2015, 7:46 PM

I am so jealous I can hardly post!! I have developed a sensitivity to all alcohol, and I can no longer sample anything. It really affects my ability to write about brew pubs etc. :)

AsADrivenLeaf wrote on January 24, 2015, 3:07 AM

Many details I couldn't relate. But sounds like a fun beer event.