We’ve not had a proper full on #Twissup for a long time, the last I believe being in Newcastle Upon Tyne for Toon Twissup in November 2011, so as a sort of stop-gap until the next full-blown event I thought I’d have a bash at organising a mini one.
First off let me explain what a #Twissup is for the uninitiated. Quite simply it’s a gathering of twitter using beer lovers, brewers etc etc in a particular city, on one day, taking in several bars and perhaps a brewery or two. Check out the link to Andy Moggs blog above to read more about it, he tends to be one of the main organisers of these events and it has several accounts of how it all went on there. You don’t have to use Twitter or any other social media of course anyone is welcome, it just helps to see what is happening where.
To be fair what I’m trying to organise is likely to be slightly scaled down version, as Macclesfield, or Treacle Town as it is known locally doesn’t have quite as many top end bars and pubs as a major city centre such as Newcastle. No disrespect meant to any Maxonians there, Macc has some great places too or else I wouldn’t be inviting folks to go there, but is clearly smaller.
Essentially the day is to be centred around the three pubs I tend to visit most regularly and a brewery, with maybe more to follow and a final running order to be confirmed.
The brewery visit will be to meet owner/brewer Toby Mckenzie and co at RedWillow. RedWillow need no introduction to UK beer geeks I’m sure, but expect some super fresh, tasty, hoppy beers available from the brewery on the day, along with hopefully a surprise or two either there at the time, or out and about in Macc.
Weather permitting (should Spring ever get sprung and out of the way) Summer should be with us and RedWillow have kindly offered to put on a barbecue for us lucky people too.
The remaining time at this stage at least is aimed at spending time at the three pubs/bars that I playfully nicknamed “the Macclesfield triangle”, called such because travelling between them as the crow flies they make up a triangle (#isosceles obviously), but also it is within this area that a great deal of time, money and beer disappears… 😉
In no particular order we have The Wharf, recently awarded pub of the year status by the local Macclesfield and East Cheshire branch of CAMRA as seen below.
Landlord Chris Stairmand runs The Wharf with a seemingly endless supply of energy and enthusiasm which makes it a great place to be, which is nice. But he’s also a massive beer fan too which is evident in his beer menu, meaning that there is always something interesting on the bar or in the cellar. From memory that includes five cask pumps, two keg fonts dedicated to UK and International beers, a great bottle list and a regular array of lager and ciders.
The Macc is pretty much as close as you get to a city “craft” bar and has had some extensive interior renovation in the last couple of years whilst under the guidance ex manager Scott (now of Beermoth fame). The inside is now very much open plan, with pastel shades and lots of comfy leather sofas to lounge in, yet it still keeps a traditional feel somehow. Now under a very capable new management team led by Hannah, The Macc continues to serve up a fine selection of beverage, think lots of quality cask ales with an emphasis on the “newer brewing fraternity”, several keg lines including a dedicated Brewdog pump and a super bottle menu too. The Macc does great food and also has a superb chippy right outside the door for the “less formal diner”.
Last but by no means least we come to The Treacle Tap. This was the pub that drew me to Macclesfield in the first place after seeing it pictured on the front page of the “Out In Cheshire” CAMRA magazine in my local pub. I’m not sure if it was the name or the quirky old apothecary shop style frontage that hooked me, but I fell in love with the place there and then.
This is the smallest of the three venues holding around 60 people tops, but don’t let that fool you, the welcome is warm and the space they have is put to very good use. The small bar area normally has three quality cask beers on tap, on my last visit these were topped with two beers from Buxton and another from Tiny Rebel if that is anything to go by. No keg other than lager/cider but that is more than made up for by their extensive bottle range as pictured below.
The Treacle Tap also do a fabulous range of pies made by the artisan Great North Pie Company, all of these are delicious but you have to try the steak and ale made with Macclesfield’s own Red Willow Pale Ale, it’s delicious.
In terms of beers on offer out and about on the day it’s early days, but as a starter for ten Buxton have already agreed to try and have a couple of big guns available on the day as well as the Red Willow offerings.
If any other breweries fancy getting involved, please contact either the venues direct or myself and I will put you in touch.
Of course if all that isn’t enough for you, there are many more pubs in the area, including The Waters Green Tavern which is a stones throw from Macclesfield railway station, The Park Tavern which is the Bollington Brewery tap and of course Manchester is only 25 minutes away for a late evening top up on the way home.
The date for your diary is Saturday 29th of June 2013, times etc to be confirmed but I’d expect to kick off around lunchtime or after a hearty breakfast somewhere in town.
What I really need is a rough indication of numbers, it’s not a ticket event of course but if I can at least get a feeling for a minimum amount it will give everyone involved a fighting chance to make sure enough of everything, beer, food and staff are available. If you can drop me a note in comments, or contact me via twitter etc that would really help.
Keep an eye out on Twitter for the #IsoscelesTwissup or #isosceles for short for more details as and when they emerge and please, please share the love and make this a great event.
Cheers everyone, hope you can come along.
Update: Please join the Macclesfield Twissup #isosceles Facebook page
Update 2: Check out this great round up featuring The Macc Triangles finest.. Read it here