IT’S a bit like hit stage shows Matilda or The Book of Mormon. It pays to book well ahead for the best independent beer festivals or disappointment will be guaranteed.
Both IndyManBeerCon (Thu Oct 3-Sun Oct 6) and the Independent Salford Beer Festival (Thu Oct 31-Sat Nov 2) are hot tickets, one a huge presence on the UK craft scene, the other more bijou but with an equally eclectic line-up.
ToM aims to take up residence at both and has been busy booking. IMBC 2019 still has tickets available for the opening Thursday session (5.30pm-10.30pm) plus a limited amount for the closing Sunday session (1pm-6pm), each session priced at £10 plua booking fee.
Buy them via this link. The rest of the Convention, now in its eighth year, is sold out, testimony to the influence of this event organised by Jonny Heyes and the team behind Common and Port Street Beerhouse.
The ISBF is two years younger and going from strength to strength under the stewardship of forthright beer blogger Jim Cullen (BeersManchester). Its venue at Helmsley House, Salford (below), may not be as spectacular as IndyMan’s at Victoria Baths but they pack in a real commitment to hops and malt and beyond. Tickets are becoming scarce for both afternoons and evenings. Act fast. They are mostly £22 a session but that includes entry, £10 of tokens, a festival glass and programme. Book now via this link.
This year they are putting more focus on cider, small batch, wild ferment, cutting edge natural stuff. A breakthrough event has already sold out– the Thursday ‘conversation’ and tasting hosted by Full Juice editor Susanna Forbes: “When Cider Meets Beer – Flavour and Fun, Crossovers and Collaborations”
On the subject of fermented apple juice check out our preview of the first Manchester Cider Week (Sept 9-15).
Finally, if you really are committed to long term hoppy investment tickets are now on sale for the Cloudwater Brewery-driven Friends & Family & Beer (Feb 21 and 22, 2020), which is moving to a new, larger venue for 2020, Manchester Central. Details here of this unique not-for-profit collab between some of the world’s finest craft brewers.
Independent Manchester Beer Convention 2019. Thurs-Sun, October 3-October 6. Victoria Baths, Hathersage Road, Manchester, M13 0FE.
Independent Salford Beer Festival. Thu Oct 31-Sat Nov 2. Helmsley House, 11-42 The Crescent Salford, M5 4PE. Full beer and cider line-up here.