The 8th Skipton Beer Festival
Went to visit the the 8th “the Pirate edition” Skipton Beer festival yesterday.
Venue: It was a bit weird arriving at a hotel for a beer festival, it really felt like I had arrived to attend a wedding, with the chandeliers and the disco balls. I understand why it was moved and it was a good space for it, I understand it was way to crammed the previous years.
Staff: Great welcome, friend volunteers from the local CAMRA. Few were nicely dressed up as, or arrrrrgh they Pirates? Liked the pet sheep on the shoulders instead of the parrot.
Beers: As always there is always way too many to pick from, even if you are only sipping the tasters, not that is a problem, it is great to see that there is choice out there to sample. I for one now know a few more breweries that I need to keep an eye out for. Many was picked to be local, within 25 miles radius, which is good for me.
After the 20-25min walk along the canal to the venue, I went to my favourite brewery at the moment – Copper Dragon, Skipton. In hope that the Hill Hammer the Tour de France special was on tap, sadly it wasn’t, since they just finished it and it wasn’t planned to be at the festival.
Now I did managed to sample :
Silver Must, 4.0% – Copper Dragon – A genuine real ale Pilsner, using Saaz and Hallertau hops.
What would Jeffers Do?, 4.5% – Hand drawn Monkey – Massively hopped red rye ale.
Tea, 5.0% – First Chop – American style IPA.
American Pale Ale, 4.8% – Long Man – Triple hopped APA with citrus aroma and robust bitterness.
Columbus IPA, 4.5% – Durham – Full bodied American IPA. Peachy aroma and grapefruity flavour.
Premium Yorkshire Blonde, 4.5% – Ossett – Well rounded, slightly sweet. Fruity hop aroma.
Pils, 4.7% – Stod Fold – Lager malts and Hersbruker hops flavour this cask pils.
Drinking 1/3’s is great as you don’t have to suffer that long, if you should have picked one that is not to your palate. And you can also taste a few more before your palate is saturated or you lose track of what you have tried.
This is probably the biggest problem with food or beer festivals, too much choice, even with a sip of water in between samples, the taste from the previous ale can over power the next or just make it taste slightly weird.
What I found at this festival is that the UK struggles to make American style ales. A bit like the Americans struggles to make UK style beer, ok yes there is a few breweries out there that have succeeded.
I think the winner would be the Yorkshire Blonde from Ossett, if I didn’t have the more powerful in flavoured APA and IPA just before it would be a great drink to enjoy on a warm day. I will for sure keep my eye out for other beers from the Hand Drawn Monkey Brewery, funny name and interesting taste. The one that wasn’t my cup of tea, well I think you can guess from this :)
It was good fun to see the seasoned festival goer who had a plastic bags and towels to wrap up the pint glass in, along with their own printout score sheet. They even cast come worrying glances at the young’uns who had done their best to dress up as a pirates and had a little sing song.
Sadly the dogs tail disapproved of this years design of the glasses and knocked my new addition to the floor within two days.