IT seems an age since the delicious IndyManBeerCon in October but things are looking up on the communal ale front. First the Beer and Cider Festival returns in January for its third year, now with vastly expanded capacity at Manchester Central, while the seeds have been sown for a 10-day summer beer festival taking in sites across the city.
The January event, organised by by the Campaign for Real Ale, runs from Wed 20 to Saturday 23 and showcases over 500 beers, ciders, and perries from some of the UK’s best craft breweries. In addition, there are Bière Sans Frontières’ bars introducing draught and bottled beers from around the globe. Organisers expect more than 50,000 pints to be consumed over four days. 11,500 attended in the Velodrome last year and that figure should be bettered at Manchester Central.
There’ll be no single venue for the proposed Manchester Beer Week (June 10-19). It’s the brainchild of beer blogger Connor Murphy, who says more than 40 venues (pubs, bars and restaurants) and 30 breweries across Greater Manchester have signed up for the event.
“The early support has been overwhelming and we’re already developing big plans for a number of unique events that will appeal to a wide spectrum of people, not just beer enthusiasts,” says organiser Connor (above).
“As a proud Mancunian, I am keen to showcase everything our city has to offer – from its rich brewing heritage and varied pub scene to the host of new breweries that have emerged in the past five years. I really do believe Manchester is the best city in the UK for beer.”
One of the main initiatives being planned for the festival will see modern breweries revive beers from Manchester’s past, digging through the record books to find forgotten recipes that can be recreated.
But a wide range of further events are being planned, including a brewers’ street market, a week-long pub quiz, pub treasure hunts, brewery tours, history walks and a host of special tasting events, focusing especially in matching beer to food.
Beer and Cider Festival. Jan 20-23. Manchester Central, Windmill Street, Manchester, M2 3GX. For further details, opening times and to buy advance tickets visit this link.