Wharfe Bank Brewery has recently assembled a new team to build on the company’s success and prepare for the future. Steve Crump the head brewer works alongside Tyler Kiley, a craft brew specialist, to create innovative beers. Also new to Wharfe Bank are Leigh Linley, probably better known for his beer writing (including the award-winning Great Yorkshire Beer books) who has joined the brewery as general manager, and Mark Evans joins the brewery as sales manager having worked previously with Copper Dragon, Thwaites, Timothy Taylor and Vaux Breweries. This all under Managing director, Martin Kellaway, who set up the brewery in 2010.
On first meeting Tyler it becomes very clear that all at Wharfe Bank brew beer because they are passionate about their beer and not simply because they can. I have at various times over the last couple of years tried and really enjoyed lots of their ales notably the Printers Ink, Camfell Flame, Yorkshire IPA, Thether Blond and Slingers Gold. However this evening Tyler, talked me through the beers they are showcasing in Mr Foleys. Tether Blond is a beer I have tasted before and believe me it is very moreish, it is not too strong but does not lack complex flavours because of it. Fireside Blond or in future to be named Magellan is a stronger pale ale made with New Zealand hops making it a little sharper in flavour and stronger in ABV but as with all their ales ultimately drinkable. Treacle Toffee Stout was the epitome of bonfire toffee in a glass perfect for the cold winter evenings which are almost upon us. Ro Sham Bo is mighty Pale Ale weighing in at 6.8% but is lovely to drink and I savoured every drop. This is also a collaboration brew with Grateful Deaf Brewing and Broadford Brewer, a home brewer from Leeds. By the way I was reliably informed that Ro Sham Bo is the alternate name for what we know as Rock-Paper-Scissors.
More collaborations are planned for the future to include a Coffee IPA with Laynes Espresso and a Pink Grapefruit ale with Neil's Greengrocers of Kirkgate Market. Furious is from their in-house Firestorm range from head brewer Steve, this uses American hops and is in equal measure smooth, sweet and bitter. And finally, my personal favourite of the evening was Oberon this is truly fantastic beer that is easy to drink and is superbly flavoursome. In the course of the evening I speak to all involved in driving their business forward and it is clear they are passionate about what they do. I wish them all the best for the future and have no doubts 2015 and onwards will bring great rewards for their hard work.
Finally I have to say that Mr Foleys is a great bar that in recent times I have been guilty of not frequenting it as often as I should. Therefore I urge people to go there, sample their own beers from York Brewery and the many guest beers they offer.