I'm sat on the steps of Leeds' stunning Town Hall in some warm September sunshine with a glass of chilled, golden beer in hand, and I'm not alone. Hundreds of people are doing and have done the very same over this amazing 4-day festival of craft beer. Below, I can see where the various tantalising smells of food of the various vendors are coming from, as well as the marquee which is housing some of the UK brewers and there respective drinks. Behind me, a constant conveyor belt of happy, smiling people holding a half or a pint of something, enter and exit the town hall. Lets dip inside...
Different pallets require different needs and whatever yours maybe, there is a beer for it here somewhere. Money is exchanged for tokens and drinks bought at a steady third of a glass, or the more popular half, or (whisper it) even a full pint! We know it's acceptable to sip and take our time from a small glass as do most craft beer enthusiasts. It feels very continental and (thankfully) a world away from the pint guzzling, tasteless lager brigade. The marquee outside holds enough quality alone with local brewers Northern Monk Brewing Co, Ilkley Brewery, and Roosters Brewery all present. Add to this the likes of Beavertown, Hawkshead and Brew By Numbers into the mix and that would suffice, yet it's merely the tip of the beery iceberg. Inside the town hall, more big name UK brewers can't pour fast enough. London's Five Points, Four Pure, and Partizan breweries each have their own square feet marked out as do Manchester's Cloudwater and Peterborough's Oakham Ales among others, all present and keen to tempt you with their pales,IPA's, stouts and more.. You want more? Offshoot rooms and underneath the hall have it covered...
Wherever you go, there's beer to try naturally. It would be tiresome to offer up the incredibly long list we notched up given the amount of 'thirds' we managed to put away. We all have our own favourites, 'go to' beers, and new discoveries we're keen to blab about. Galway Bay Brewery was hugely popular, particularly their incredible 'of Foam and Fury' double IPA (8.5%), and their chocolate milk stout 'Buried At Sea' (4.5%) which is a dessert beer match made in heaven for the right accompaniment or simply a dessert on its own. Mikkeller naturally had people clambering to see what was on offer on any given day at their bar. At 13.1%, the imperial stout 'Black Hole' could certainly have taken you into one if you weren't careful. Rich and complex and massive! Spain's Edge Brewery kept me hop happy bringing their IPA 'Hoptimista' (6.6%) full of piney, citrus goodness.
|Our competition winner (centre) with the NZ Beer Collective|
Words - Pete Jackson
Plus One Magazine would like to offer sincere thanks to the following breweries who participated in our hugely successful competition below...
Thanks also to;
Drew Millward (poster)
Little Leeds Beer House (Growler and fill up)
Andreas Fält - Vertical Brands (Italian and Firestone Walker prizes)
Special thanks to;
Maria and Darren @leedsBeer
1.You MUST have a ticket for the event to access your prize if you win. 2.Follow us on Twitter and let us know you'd like to enter the competition by tweeting the following; I've entered @plusonemagazine competition to win stuff at @leedsbeer http://plusonemagazine.blogspot.co.uk/2015/08/leeds-international-beer-festival-2015.html 3.Go to our LIBF15 page to post a comment. Tell us which brewery or beer you are most looking forward to tasting. Doesn't have to be one of the below, the winners will be chosen completely at random. Prize winners will be announced on the evening of Wednesday September 2nd via Twitter and on here. An official Leeds International Beer Festival poster courtesy of DREW MILLWARD. 1 x T-Shirt from YEASTIE BOYS, plus a personal tutored tasting of their beers for 4 people at the event. FIRESTONE WALKER cans of 'Easy Jack'. 3 bottles of BIRRIFICIO ITALIANO Tipopils and matching glass. Plus BIRRIFICIO ITALIANO T-shirt. A polo shirt courtesy of KIRKSTALL BREWERY. A FIVE POINTS BREWERY Tote bag. A HAWKSHEAD BREWERY complementary brewery tour for 2, plus 2 x T-Shirts. 1 x T-Shirt from YEASTIE BOYS A WEIRD BEARD stemmed tulip beer glass with the London brewers logo on it. Beer packs thanks to Hackney's FIVE POINTS BREWERY- containing cans of Five Points Pale and Five Points IPA. Plus Tote bag. 3 bottles of BIRRIFICIO ITALIANO Tipopils and matching glass. A 'goody bag' put together courtesy of BREW BY NUMBERS. Cans of beer from NORTHERN MONK's core range and a bottle of their 'Lust'. A polo shirt courtesy of KIRKSTALL BREWERY. A voucher from LITTLE LEEDS BEER HOUSE for one of their growlers and a fill up of the winners choice from their draught selection at the shop. Three half glasses of PARTIZAN BREWERY beer of the winners choosing at the festival. A BIRRIFICIO ITALIANO T-shirt. 3 bottles of BIRRIFICIO ITALIANO Tipopils and matching glass. FIVE POINTS BREWERY Tote bag.