Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries

Festival of Brewers Focus – Horsforth Brewery

As an introduction to the inaugural Festival of Brewers in Leeds on June the 29th/30th, organiser Mike Hampshire and I will be profiling some of the attending breweries, some of which may be new to drinkers in Leeds and beyond. First up for me is Horsforth Brewery.

Suburban Brewing Dreams

Horsforth lays claim to being the largest village in the United Kingdom which, given that it is now a rather sizeable suburb of Leeds, seems like a bit redundant. It’s certainly more like a small town these days, with decent pubs, eateries, a University and more recently, a brewery.

Like Horsforth itself, Mark Costello’s Horsforth Brewery has also grown recently. From an accomplished home brewing set up to 1bbl capacity brewhouse, brewing twice a week, Mark decided to take the next step last year. Whilst the business seemingly operates out of Mark’s garage, the building was actually reconstructed with the sole purpose of being his brewhouse, resulting in a compact but professional setup.

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The Shiny Hose House

Mark still brews part time alongside his existing job at the moment and enjoys the balance that gives him. ‘I’m hoping that Festival of Brewers will be an indication of how well things are going. I don’t struggle to sell beer, and the Horsforth Pale absolutely flies out on cask, which makes it my go-to beer at the moment and which I brew as much as possible. I’m a big fan of Saisons as well, I did one last year and I’ve been waiting for summer to brew it again. Wheat beers are also a favourite, and I like Rye beer especially my Black Rye IPA, which is a bit of a hard one to get people to try, but once they do I find that they like it’.

Expansion and Identity

Mark acknowledges the pressure of establishing his brewery in a busy market, and sees it as important to create an identity and brew beers ‘that work’. ‘There may be more adventurous brewers than me out there, but i like creating beers that showcase the flavours that are meant to be there. And some people may call my brewery traditional, but others may call me a crazy brewery – not many trad brewers make 7.5% fruity saisons. I look to people like Magic Rock who understand the width of their customer base. As the market for beer around Horsforth has grown, with new places like the Hop Shack and Granville’s widening people’s horizons, creating a great hoppy cask Pale will lead to them trying my other beers on the back of it’.

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Plans afoot

Mark’s beers have made it into most of Leeds’ bottleshops, as well as Ilkley, Otley and Ossett, but given that every brew is selling out at the moment, Mark acknowledges that extra capacity is going to be needed to further increase supplies, as well as investing the time to secure new customers. Last year’s bottled Raspberry Saison sold out to the trade within a day of release which indicates how well regarded the brewery was even after only operating at it’s current scale for a short period.

Festival Plans

Given the success of the previous brew, Mark is planning to showcase his Saisons at the Festival of Brewers. ‘I’m going to have four Keg beers – Horsforth Pale, Rubis (my Raspberry Saison), Soleil (my Rhubarb Saison) and Weiße Rose (my Hefeweizen). My Hefe is typically full of that Banana aroma that we associate with German wheat beers and i’m looking forward to seeing how people respond to it’.

‘I’m looking forward to the experience of having my own bar for the first time, I’ve worked bars before but this one really counts personally and I’m looking forward to seeing drinkers’ reactions up close. I haven’t advertised the brewery at all other than on social media, so I’m looking forward to seeing who’s heard of me too! Getting feedback from unbiased customers is fantastic, especially if it’s good.’

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Cleaning and Prepping

Unity and Togetherness

Speaking to Mark, it’s clear how much being involved with the Festival of Brewers means to him, and how excited he is to begin pouring for the public. ‘It’s a really interesting idea, as there are loads of good beer festivals out there that all feature the well known breweries, and rightly so, but this is a unique range of breweries and I’ve always liked the idea of supporting the little guy – and in comparison to others the breweries here are the little guy. All the owners of the attending breweries will care deeply about the event, and will have put a lot of effort into their setup for the day, so to see customers making that effort to attend in return will be really encouraging to us. I’m looking forward to trying the beers that Crooked Brewing bring to the festival, and they’re great guys as well. I’ve not had too much from Wishbone, which i’m looking forward to sampling, and trying Meanwood Brewery’s beers.’

As I talk to Mark, he is prepping to brew his Raspberry Saison for the festival and is thinking over a few tweaks to the recipe to ensure the beer will taste better than ever, and he is full of praise for the other brewers that he knows will be doing the same. It’s clear that any competitiveness between bars will be of the friendly variety, and this togetherness will be a real strength not only at the Festival, but for the Leeds brewing scene going forwards.

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This good boy poked his nose in briefly

About the Festival of Brewers

The first ever Festival of Brewers event takes place on 29th and 30thJune 2018, with New Craven Hall hosting, which can be found just one-mile South of Leeds City Train Station.

All too often, independent beer festivals choose to focus their attention on the same, larger, popular UK craft breweries. This makes it difficult for the hundreds of smaller breweries across the UK to share the spotlight. Festival of Brewers aims to address that by only showcasing local small and independent breweries.

You can find out all the information, including participating breweries and street food vendors, tickets and how to find the venue on the website www.festivalofbrewers.co.uk.

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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries

Leeds Beer Week


It’s been in the pipeline for some time, and now we can start getting our diaries out and stockpiling bacon/berocca/naproxen as the events for Leeds Beer Week have been announced. I’m beyond excited, and if you’re not, here’s why you should be.

Firstly, it’s a week, but longer than a week, running Sunday 28th August to Tuesday the 6th September – which gives us all a day’s rest before Leeds International Beer Festival. So, plenty of time to get involved, and as there’s events spread across the 10 days you won’t be short of options.

Northern Monk, Ilkley and North Brew Co are taking the lead locally, organising events that give us an insight into their history and inspiration, as well as beer dinners and food matching events. Friends of Ham, Bundobust, Ox Club and the Greedy Pig are all also hosting events that showcase the best of Leeds’ dining with expertly selected beers. 

The week’s events celebrate not just the local beer scene and what it has to offer, but they also bring the pick of UK and European breweries to town. Northern Monk are inviting De Molen over, North Brew Co are hosting Manchester’s finest, and Tapped and Headrow House have a packed programme of individual Brewery tap takeovers. Bundobust and Wapentake also have US and Yorkshire themed draught lists respectively
There’s far too much for me to go into detail about here, but I urge you to dive in and attend as much as you can. I’m grateful that the organisers have taken such time and effort to assemble this programme of events, and hopefully it’ll be the first of many in years to come. 

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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries

Town Hall Meeting

Writhing in the abyss of a hangover, wrestling with fatigue and thirst, random images, thoughts and sentences dig their way out of the recesses of my mind. Adulterated by booze and increased sodium levels, some are fined and bright, others lost in the hazy murk of repetition. Exaltations as the phrase ‘finish him’ flashes past my eyes. Resting a glass on the roots of soft and wispy trees growing from a concrete floor surrounded by people wearing flashing headphones. A blue and red man covered in hands thrusting his many flapping fingers into the throng.

What’s clear is that Leeds International Beer Festival exceeded expectations this year. Take your average City beer fest, double the amount of Bars and Beers, add a load of food of extremely high quality, unique varied and exciting entertainment and a room of free classic arcade machine and you’ve got what amounts to a huge, friendly, bustling house party in the grandest gaff in town.

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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries, Reviews and events

Unexpected Renaissance

There’s not many gloomier booze sensations, then opening a beer or sitting in a pub and thinking…what happened here? 

About 8 years ago Mr Foley’s Cask Ale House opened in Leeds, replacing Dr Okell’s, a pub based in the ground floor of the grand Pearl Assurance building on The Headrow and run by Okell’s Brewery of the Isle of Man. This coincided with my increased interest in all things Beer and the Bar and I agreed to form a mutually beneficial partnership. It would open to serve beer, I would visit to drink said beer. 

It worked well. Despite being primarily an outlet for York Brewery, the guest ales were good, the staff were great and knowledgeable and they became one of the first bars in Leeds to have a permanent Punk IPA tap, a rarity back then. I had many great nights, and one memorable stinker. This was the Jewel in the crown on my 30th birthday crawl, and I even saw the ‘Aguerroooo’ moment in the bar with a City fan. 

Then, not long after, things changed. Management left for new challenges, the Leeds scene moved on (Friends of Ham had just opened) and the place didn’t seem the same. Perhaps due to the limitations of the building, there had always been an ‘Aroma’ to the place, and this pissy stale smell was now not outweighed by the Beer selection, which had become unloved and lukewarm. Cellaring now seemed to occur in the disabled toilet at ground level, which seemed sadly, lazily, apt.

Having given the place a wide berth for a couple of years, bar the odd pint when I visited Leeds Town Hall, I’d been encouraged to give it another go by an expanded Beer range noted via twitter and Tony Naylor’s piece on Leeds’ best craft beer pubs.

Always a busy place, last Friday night was no exception, four deep at the bar and all seats taken. Foley’s has a unique layout, with a large back room, a raised seating area to the front, and a Gallery perched over the main bar area. Alongside York Brewery’s cask range, there were at least eight guests on handpump, and six keg fonts, all displaying interesting and varied selections. 

I asked for an Arbor Ales Half-Day IPA and, I’ll admit, didn’t have high expectations with regard to the expected condition of my Pint. As the title of this post suggests however, I was pleasantly surprised. Cellar-cool, pungently hoppy and with a superb neatly sparked head, I was knocked back. Another Pint came quickly, followed by beers from Pilot and Thornbridge. I talked myself out of a Jaipur X or Cannonball, partly because the night was young and I was already a bit giddy, partly because it gives me a further reason to return soon. My only slight criticism was that nearly all of the beer on sale was 5% and above, but I can’t really blame a pub for offering to get me drunk…responsibly. 

Pleased with my visit, I wandered off into the night, happy that a place I fell out of love with was making me want to come back. And I will…

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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries, Opinion and rants, Reviews and events

Jan/Feb Round Up

Long time, no blog! Well, given that most of my January was spent lurgy’d up, the thirst has taken a back seat for most of the year so far. Having missed out on Brewdenell due to poor financial planning on my part, things didn’t get off to a great start, and once the return to work malaise had truly bitten and I’d inhaled a skip full of other people’s germs, even a few bottles at home proved a challenge. A visit to Northern Monk refectory for Hopzine’s Humulus Lupulus tap take over was something I was very much looking forward to, with Rob selecting his choice of the best Beers the UK has to offer. Magic Rock, Kernel and Buxton all made the list, with the only drawback being that in my haste to taste I ended up ‘crafting’ myself into a taxi prematurely…which I think hastened the manflu onset.
 
The only beyond Leeds expedition was a train journey through the fug to Bradford, where I managed a couple of pints at the relatively recently opened Record Café. Located within walking distance of the establised Sparrow, the focus is not only on a quality, affordable line up of Cask and Keg, but also Charcuterie boards and, of course, Vinyl. If I worked for the Telegraph, I’d probably describe it as a ‘H*pster Paradise’, but of course that would be a poor use of an insipid term to describe what is a welcoming bar with a mixed crowd. Not having a turntable after digitising all my Shakin’ Stevens LPs, I didn’t venture up for a browse through well stocked music section, but a draught selection from Blackjack, Bridestones and Camden ensured I’ll be coming back for a return visit.
 
Last week, I and many others trotted along to North Bar for a Beavertown Tap takeover, and being a Beer Evangelist (bore) I also brought my Brother-in-Law along for an introduction to Gamma Ray et al. ‘Rare Casks’ said the flyer, which turned out to be a sole Cask of Smog Rocket – not exactly disappointing, but I had hoped for something slightly more exotic. Regardless, it was on form and so were the rest of the selected Keg offerings. I was especially impressed with the Dogfish Head collaboration, Londonerweisse, which was cheek-suckingly sour and lemon sherbet-esque. Appelation, a Bramley Apple Saison with Champagne yeast also impressed, and the Spiced Pumpkin Stingy Jack also made me reconsider my outright indifference to the style. As well as working my way through the tap list, I had a good catch up with other Leeds (and beyond) based twitterers and bloggers, which is partly responsible for making a resumed effort to jab away at the keys now.
 
March is looking up for drinking opportunites, another tap takeover is planned for North Bar on the 11th March, with Weird Beard the guests this time. I’m also planning a birthday weekend in London, my first in a couple of years, and hope to take in at least one brewery visit and a good bar crawl after. Its also the first Leeds bottleshare evening at Northern Monk on the 26th March, again organised by Rob from Hopzine. All tickets have been sold, but given how quickly they went and the enthusiasm for the event, I can see it becoming a regular fixture already.
 
Finally, I was lucky enough to participate in one of LearnToBrewUK’s brewing sessions in January, and have just taken delivery of the end product. The day is a crash course in all-grain homebrewing, with all equipment and materials provided. Hosts Steve and Andy run through the process step-by-step in a light hearted and informative way, giving you all the knowledge you need to go home and begin brewing immediately. I paired up for the day with Pete from PlusOne Magazine and we created ‘Clowning Glory’ a light pale, dry hopped with Amarillo. Pete wrote a blog about the day, and Rach (Look at Brew) has also interviewed the guys on her blog. I’d heartily recommend you book your spot on one of their upcoming days, as not only is it a great introduction to Homebrewing, but you get 20 bottles of your Brew a few weeks later. Mine is young, but tasting good and I’ve been told our effort has also been sent to the guys at Beer O’Clock show as part of their upcoming podcast featuring Homebrewed beer, released 13th March.
Hopefully, I’ll be inspired to update this blog more often in the coming months, and hopefully give you an insight into the Leeds beer scene and what’s coming up. The city is now, in my opinion, one of the premier destinations for a weekend away and I would urge you to get yourself on a train this spring/summer.
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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries

Golden Pints 2014

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One of the favourite times of the year as a Blog reader over the past couple of years has been Christmas, and checking out other people’s end-of-year posts. Other people’s Golden Pints is something I always make a point of seeking out and seeing so many Bloggers come up with their lists has been a good mental refresher for me of the year in Beer – highlights, remembering a great beer I might have forgotten and recommendations for new things to try.

Hopefully, my list will prompt a similar response, let me know if you agree with my selections. If you disagree, your opinion is factually incorrect….

Best UK Cask Beer High Wire – Magic Rock Brewing Company
High Wire really is my go-to Beer, one of those that if I walk into a pub and it’s on, I will invariably order a Pint. The Cask version for me is slightly preferable to Keg, if only for the contrast between the Citric, Bitter hop profile and the creamy sparkled mouthfeel that we get in the North (and even as a Southerner, I’m happy with a Sparkled Pint). Honourable Mentions go to the wonderous and mind-altering half of Beavertown Bone King I had on an unexpected lunchtime visit to Friends of Ham, and also to Kirkstall Brewery’s Black Band Porter.
Best UK Beer Keg BeerCannonball – Magic Rock Brewing Company
Predictable? Yes. Named by plenty of other bloggers for their Keg choice? Check. Do I care? No! Best Keg beer for me by far. Wonderfully consistent, increasingly, and in Leeds readily, available and a guaranteed flavour bomb. Other memorable beers include Northern Monk’s black IPA ,Dark Arches, and Summer Wine’s Pacer – a superb Pale Ale that enabled a heat-hating bloke to a relax with a Summer-y pint on a hot day.
Best Bottled/Canned BeerBottle – Wild Beer Co – Ninkasi Premier Cru
Ninkasi was my favourite Beer of 2013, and to see the Premier Cru version being launched made me initially feel a bit wary. At the time, I’d had a few Barrel-Aged or special edition version of other Beers I’d enjoyed that didn’t particularly add to the original, or felt like a sideways step into ignoring the strengths of the original version. On opening the Premier Cru, the aroma immediately dispelled any negativity. The Brett character of the original was enhanced, with a sharp apple tang but also a smooth, satisfying feel. Moreish in the extreme. For these reasons, it also gets the nod from me for Best Overall Beer.
Best Overseas Draught Beer – Freigeist Bierkultur – Salzspeicher (Raspberry)
Some Beers defy style, some seem to invent new ones and having this on tap at North Bar during their Oktoberfest was slightly mind-blowing. A sour Raspberry Porter, I felt a bit reticent to try this at first but the combination of the tart berries and roasted maltiness won me over. I only had the evening to try this and haven’t seen it anywhere since, but those three halves were a memorable experience.
Best Overseas Bottled/Canned Beer – Odell Brewing Co –  Myrcenary
A huge double IPA with an even huger aroma, this had me immediately online ordering more. I also drunk a few six-packs of Ska Euphoria over the summer, and Brewfist’s Czech Norris punnery was forgiven when I tasted an Imperial Pils that kicked more ubiquitous Italian Lagers in the Crotch and spat on their neck.
Best Collaboration Brew – Magic Rock/Lervig Farmhouse IPA
Simultaneously fresh and hoppy but also with a saisony earthy quality, this beer was an instant entry into my year’s top beers. Looking forward to seeing how this develops, I think some was kept in reserve for Barrel-aging. Runners-Up medals go to Stone/Smuttynose Cluster’s Last Stand, and Buxton/Omnipollo Stolen Fruits.
Best Branding, Pumpclip or Label – Wild Beer Co
Simple, yet distinctive – clear brand recognition and informative, yet uncluttered front labelling. Classy.
Best UK Brewery – Magic Rock Brewing Co
For a smaller brewery to produce such consistently good and innovative Beers must take such dedication and hard work. One of the strengths of Magic Rock is that they don’t rest on their laurels. With an expanded brewery on the way and a canning line being fired up, 2015 is going to be their biggest and hopefully best year yet. Along with Wild Beer Co and Summer Wine Brewing, I always scan the shelves or stock list of online or offline Beer Vendors for their products first.
Best Overseas Brewery – Odell Brewing
I think with the increasing number of US Breweries that are becoming available to Beer consumers in the UK, Odell have been slightly overshadowed for some reason in the search for the ‘new’. For me, Consistency and quality are paramount when it comes to divvying up the monthly Beer allowance and Odell almost always feature in my basket. Not only are their core beers reliable and often fresh as a daisy, their seasonal specials also seem to make the long trip East intact and loaded with flavour.
Pub/Bar of the Year – Northern Monk Refectory and Best New Brewery – Northern Monk Brewing Co
Like many in Leeds, I was hugely excited when it was announced that Northern Monk had chosen Holbeck just outside of Leeds City Centre, and even more enthused when they announced their plans included a 20-tap Refectory. Around 10 of their beers are on tap at any time, and accompanied by Grub and Grog Shop’s fancy, but not fancily priced food it is truly a Beer destination for Leeds to be proud of. Northern Monk isn’t exactly a new Brewery, having released cuckoo-brewed Beer and Collaborations previously, but with a new home and a buzz around them, it feels right for me to select them after a great year. I’ve also been encouraged by the beers I’ve tried from Atom Beers of Hull and look forward to slurping my way through more soon.
Festival of the Year – Leeds International Beer Festival
2014 was the Festival’s third year, and aside from the fact that I was the only Festival I got to, it is a worthy nominee. In the grandiose setting of Leeds Town Hall, the event felt slightly larger than the previous year’s – it certainly seemed busier and the Saturday evening session was rammed. I spent most of my time in the main hall circling the centre of the room where the Northern Monk/Kernel/Magic Rock bars were located, with an occasional foray to see outside on the Town Hall steps in the warm evening sunshine.
Supermarket of the Year – Waitrose
Enough said really, I don’t shop at Supermarkets for beer often but when we pass a Waitrose I’ll pop in for a few bottles.
Independent retailer of the year – Bierhuis
My nomination for this Category goes to Bierhuis mainly as it’s my local Beer retailer, and one with a great range of bottles at good prices. If you’re looking to sample a range of bottles from Yorkshire’s smaller micros I’d recommend here above the other shops in the area due to the sheer depth of their range in this department. They also stock a good range of Belgian and World beers, and often get one-off deliveries of Beers which I havent seen available elsewhere in West Yorks. This is probably one of the tougher categories for me to pick a sole nominee, also being a loyal customer of Beer Ritz for a good few years, and greatly appreciative of and excited to see Tall Boys opening a bottle shop in Leeds City Centre – something that was sorely lacking before.
Online Retailer of the Year – Beer Merchants/Ales by Mail
I’m going to duck this one slightly as I don’t buy beer online often, being pretty well served by the businesses above, but both Beer Merchants and Ales by Mail have been exemplary in my personal experience and both stock great ranges.
Best Beer blog or website – Boak and Bailey
Boak and Bailey don’t just write interesting and well researched articles that cover the whole spectrum of Beer and Pub related topics, they also encourage and collate efforts from other bloggers and draw attention to subjects that may have otherwise been overlooked.
Best Beer App – Twitter
My main source of info about new Beers, Breweries and Blog posts is Twitter – via the people and businesses I follow and interact with, my knowledge of the ‘scene’ and issues and news surrounding Beer has increased exponentially. Beer is nothing without people, and getting to know people and read their thoughts and opinions on Beer through Twitter has been great. The occasional paddys/meltdowns/furious rants that pop up on my timeline are also very entertaining.
Simon Johnson award for best beer Twitterer – Broadford Brewer
I’ve followed David since joining Twitter, and have been continually entertained by his timeline’s mix of Dad jokes, doodles, thoughtful blog posts and general good-egg qualities.
Best Brewery Website/Social Media – Brewdog
Slick motherhubbards doing their thing.  You like what they do or you don’t. No further explanation needed.
So, there you go, just my thoughts on what has been a good year for Beer. Much expansion planned by some of my favourites Breweries and Bars, so 2015 already looks like a year to remember.
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Leeds Beer, Boozers and Breweries

Something Beery this way comes…Tall Boys Beer Market

 

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Leeds is great for a Beer, as you probably know. Pubs and Bars galore serving up all manner of treats for the thirsty foam fanatic. However, we all have those responsibilities and reasons for being called away from the Bar and back home before Beer O’Clock strikes, and it’s in these instances that that Leeds City Centre has limited options for those looking to stock on supplies for the Craft-inclined.

Exciting news then, with the emergence of Tall Boys Beer Market and their plans to establish a specialist Beer Shop in Thornton’s Arcade. Located at the upper end of Briggate, passing through to Lands Lane, the ornate Arcade is home to other independent retailers such as OK Comics and Chimp, and is one of Leeds’ hidden shopping attractions, nestling between the more brash commercial surrounds.

In order to get the lowdown on what might be in store, I dropped a line to Tall Boys  for a quick chat.

Firstly, can you tell me a bit about your background to start off with – have you been involved with any previous/related ventures, or worked for any other beer-related businesses? 

Tall Boys Beer Market is an independent bottle shop opening in Leeds City Centre. We are Ben, Cody and Nick and collectively have around 20 years experience in pubs, bars, music venues and festivals around Yorkshire.

Why have you chosen to start the business? Will you have a particular focus for the shop (e.g local beer/a specialism in beer from any particular overseas locations), or will you be looking to stock a wide range of Beer from a variety of sources?

We aren’t going to pretend you can’t already get a good beer in Leeds, we believe that we have some of the best bars in the country and that Leeds is at the forefront of exciting new food and drink offerings. But people’s desire for good beer is continuously growing and we can provide an alternative to your standard city centre off-license and a more affordable option than a bar. Our range will consist of the best brews from around the UK and the rest of the world and we’ll have growler fills, monthly beer parties and an online store too. 

We will aim to have an ever-expanding range of different beers from all over the world, but one of the most important things we want to achieve is a customer-curated range. If the people that buy with us are getting excited about American craft brews, we’ll stock them, but if they want more locally brewed ales, then we will gear the list towards that. We want it to be collaborative. The shop will also have a number of draught beer options available in growlers, which we are really keen to be bringing to Leeds at an affordable price.

With a strong lineup of specialist retailers in the Arcades, how you you see your position in relation to other shops and businesses in the area? 

Fortunately, we’ve already got a great relationship with lots of local independents, and the support we’ve had so far has certainly been encouraging. We’ve worked with a lot of the good bars and breweries in Leeds already but it’s been great to see other sorts of businesses rallying behind us, such as Village Bookstore and Laynes Espresso. We’ve also been working with Awesome Merch and we are super excited to have Leeds based illustrator, Idiots Pasture on board.

With an established business such as Beer Ritz in the suburbs and the prospect of Brewdog converting their current bar in to a Bottledog branch, you’ve got some tough competition! Do you anticipate hosting events and tastings?

We think Beer Ritz is great, but we want to give Leeds a city centre option. As for anyone else opening, there could be ten more around the corner, but we’ve identified the need for a good beer shop in town and we’re just excited about that for now. 

Within the shop we have two floors to play with. We have some exciting plans for the first floor in the future, but for the time being it’s going to be a drink-in beer café for our monthly events.

Do you have an anticipated opening date yet?

We haven’t released our opening date just yet, but it’s sooner than you’d think, so follow us on twitter, facebook and instagram (@tallboysleeds) to stay updated!

So, very soon the Beer Geeks of Leeds will have another location to congregate and converse within. A dedicated beer shop in the City Centre will be a welcome addition and once they open, I’ll be straight there to check what’s on offer. I just hope I can keep a lid on the Growler until I get home, otherwise I’ll find myself on the Tall Bloke’s Job Market…

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