Monday, 2 February 2015

Kelham Island Brewery Anniversary Ale (6.5%)

It's 25 years since Dave Wickett established the ground-breaking Kelham Island brewery that gave birth to Pale Rider and the Fat Cat pub. And to many copy cats! The Alma Street pub still draws in beer tourists from far and wide whilst Pale Rider is still prolific on bars country-wide years after it was proudly crowned CAMRA's Champion beer of Britain.

 Just Champion

Rather than rest on its esteemed laurels, Kelham Island are upping their game. Their beers have recently had a colourful rebrand courtesy of snazzy comic book hero clips by local artist Jim Connelly and they have opened a new outlet on Cambridge Street, the Tap and Tankard. The new artwork is eye-catching and the pub promising. Alongside them Riders, expect cutting-edge craft, mebbe on keg, from the likes of Bad Seed and Buxton. The TnT is NOT the Fat Cat part two! Try it (it's between John Lewis and 'spoons....!).

To mark their 25th anniversary, Kelham Island brewery have produced a special one. At 6.5% and with an aggressive orange hue, this strong brew is not to be taken lightly. It's no Easy Ride , err, and only 5000 have been produced. I was the proud purchaser of the first bottle of this regal-looking IPA that Mitchell's had sold.


The beer scene in Sheffield and nationally has changed beyond all recognition over the past 25 years (NS Sherlock!)  but it's clear that Kelham Island brewery and the spirit of Dave Wickett are very much alive. Some copy cats may well be a lot fatter but this lot were the old school of hoppy micro beers, probably University dons or something. Hats off.

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