Breweries, boozers and now beer festivals are three things that Sheffield leads the country in case in point here being Shakespeares' Autumn festival.
Following Brewfest and the Steel City festival was a big ask but the Gibraltar Street boys managed just that. A year or two back we learnt not to leave a visit to this event until the weekend so two beer geeks rocked up on the Wednesday within minutes of the first fest pint being pulled.
I started on a classy Kernel keg beer (Citra Mosaic 5.3%) whilst planning the pints ahead. Sticking mainly to paler hoppy brews seemed just the ticket as the darker beers sometimes don`t do too well straight from the cask. However, blogger extraordinaire Wee Beefy appeared (as if by magic) and allowed us to try the George Samuel Yorkshire Brown Ale (5% but tasting stronger) and the tidier Five Town Schneider V2, a palateable 5.0% dark wheat beer. Both were off of the main bar mind which was dedicated admirably to local-ish ales.
Bibble (Pale 4.2%) and Goose Chase (Saison 4.5%) by the outstanding Wild were next up and we were not, err, wild about them to be honest. The Waen Message to You pale (4.2%) was better as was Weird Beard`s K##tish Town. Arbor`s NZ Amber (5.2%) was steady too. Rare to see WB on cask in the republic mind and this `hoppy wheat beer` was very suppable at 5.5%, especially considering two beer geeks aren`t the wheaty sorts. Definitely, one of our stars of this show. By contrast, Juniper IPAs are now firmly on our `no thanks` list after failing to finish the 6.4% Mad Dog Submissable Anarchy and it wor only a half and it was ultimately between 6 of us!!!
The keg range at Shakespeares is usually limited but very well selected and it was expanded for the festival whilst maintaining the quality somehow. And there was apple juice for those sorts too.
Best beer geek beers of the day were:-
1)= Siren Calypso (Simcoe Dry-hopped at 4.0%), a Berliner weisse!
1)= Burning Sky New Gods (a 4% Radler).
Both were packed with fruity flavour right to the brim of the crafty glasses. Awesome sauce, amazeballs, etc. CAMRA wouldn`t have approved but we sure did! Cheers Shakey!