Macc Twissup itinerary #Twissupdate 8

Twissup is nearly upon us and bar a few last-minute set up arrangements, everything “seems” to be in place (crosses everything), so I thought a bit of an itinerary and directions might be a good idea.

Isosc map Jpg

As you can see from the map above, it’s all pretty straightforward on the directions front and none of the venues is more than ten minutes walk from another and probably less.

11am – 12:45 pm Treacle Tap

The first point of call is the Treacle Tap which is about three minutes easy walk from the railway station. Although not plain on the map itself, simply exit the station (there is only one exit) turn left and walk down the drop off ramp to Sunderland Street, The Treacle Tap is approximately 500 metres up the road on the right hand side.

At the Treacle we have Great North Pies delicious sounding breakfast pies and hopefully their creator in attendance, chef Neil Broadhurst. Washed down with among other things Marble Earl Grey IPA. We also have our first beer exclusive with the fabulously sounding Bondi Blues from Cheshire Brewhouse.

As a last-minute addition I’ve literally just heard the Summer Wine Brewery’s “Devil Loves Chinook” arrived last night to complete the keg line up. 🙂

There will be more beer available of course on cask and keg, plus an extensive bottle list including your chance to grab your very own bottle of Red Willow Tilting Ale, brewed for Virgin Trains.

13:00 – 15:00 (15:15-ish) RedWillow Brewery

Next up the brewery visit to RedWillow, here we will sample another brand new beer brewed for Twissup, Shapeless, a continuously hopped IPA, Witless 3, Faithless G&T Saison and perhaps more dependant on demand and numbers. If all goes well you will be able to meet Michelle from OffBeat and Brian from Bitches Brewing too, both of whom were involved in collaboratively brewing two of the beers on offer. To feed your hunger we should have pulled pork fed on RedWillow grain and marinaded in RedWillow beers.

Brewery tours will be available on a staggered basis, again dependant on numbers and demand.

The leaving time has been stretched here slightly to allow the next venue to clear thirsty beer drinkers from their bar as we move on.

15:00 – 16:50 The Macc

At The Macc we will see our third brewery launch of the day with the fabulous Weird Beard and Elusive Brewing collaboration Nelson Saison. All being well both Greg and Andy from each respective brewery will be onsite to tell you a little about the beer and how it came about etc. One not to be missed

Other highlights include Magic Rock/Kissmeyer Salty Kiss and Oakhams Eugene’s Lair.

The Macc has enough cask and keg lines to quench your thirst whatever your dispense preference and a great bottle selection including some 750 sharing bottles. Food too if you’ve room and get the munchies.

17:00-15 – 19:30 The Wharf

Finally we wind our way towards our last scheduled stop of the day (the timings may be a little out by then hence the extra noted), The Wharf, recently voted Cheshire CAMRA Pub of the Year 2013.

Here we have yet another exclusive beer launch for your pleasure, the Bitches Brewing Co & Black Jack Beers “Isosceles IPA“. Again it’s hoped that the brewers will be around if commitments allow, if not I will be and I helped to brew this one too. 🙂

Chris has also lined up a very special cask of Marble Old Manchester, plus no doubt another fine beer selection on the cask and keg lines (including Tiny Rebel Urban IPA) one of which will be on the hop rocket.

……….

Map plain ArialOf course as normal on such occasions there is no requirement to follow the crowd for the entire day, although clearly that’s the idea, but if that’s not your bag and the venue in question is rammed feel free to move around. All I’d ask is that you please make an effort to visit each participating venue as everyone has put a lot of effort into making this day happen.

One word of warning though on that front, clearly the brewery time is fixed so don’t miss that, and if you do move around, be aware that any launch beers may not be on until somewhere near to the stated times.

Links to both of the map and directions sheets pictured are below (hope they work) both of which should print very well on A4 on a good quality print setting. They will available printed too from The Treacle Tap (assuming I remember to print and take them) as will be the local CAMRA leaflets which detail other pubs in the area of note, should you want to venture further afield.

Map arial

Project Isosceles – Map rev1

Should you need a hotel, there is a Travelodge 200 metres from the train station for cheap n cheerful accommodation:  Travelodge Macclesfield Central

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RedWillow Brewery and Shapeless IPA #Twissupdate 6

LogoNo Twissup would be complete without a brewery visit, it’s the law!

As it happens we are in luck as this one has a brewery too and a bloody good one at that in RedWillow, owned and run by husband and wife team Toby and Caroline Mckenzie, both of whom have been amazingly supportive in getting #Isosceles to where it is today.

Toby-McKenzie1-199x300Toby was one of the first people I asked for advice and support when starting to plan this beery escapade and he was up for it from the start. Brewery visit aside, he and Caroline have been a wealth of info and acted as go betweens on more than one occasion when things have threatened to to go tits up. So I’ll offer them both a massive thank you right here and now.

I’ll be gobsmacked if you are coming to the Twissup on June 29th and you’ve never tasted any of Toby’s beers, but just in case you’ve been locked away for a while, expect hops by the lorry load, crazy flavour concoctions made using real, fresh base ingredients (not a syrup in sight in this gaff) all bound together by a whirlwind of passion and enthusiasm.

0a747baf-68b3-4f21-bf54-815aae5ba18dTalking of which brings me to the details of yet another Isosceles exclusive, another new beer brewed to be launched on the Twissup at the brewery itself, “Shapeless”. Collaboratively brewed with Michelle Kelsall of OffBeat Brewery who is also hoping to be with us on the day.

Shapeless is a continuously hopped IPA, hopped every five minutes throughout a 60 minute brew with Simcoe, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus and Citra and was said to a real taste bud ripper in its early stages. Since then it has had another blast through the RedWillow hop rocket with (if I remember correctly), Citra, Simcoe and Centennial. I’m not sure on the abv yet but Toby reliably informs me that it is tasting amazingly well so far.

1005584_10151473650023479_21125648_nThe plan hopefully is to serve it side by side on keg and cask to give folks the chance to compare and discuss the relative merits of both, or maybe (hopefully) not discuss it that much and just bloody enjoy it? 😉

1001789_10152913496465375_3979293_nIn terms of other beers potentially on the sampling list at the brewery, we are also hoping to see Witless 3 (which I tried last night and is most definitely the best Witless so far) and if it’s ready, a fresh incarnation of Faithless Gin & Tonic Saison. Which was very recently brewed as another collaboration with Brian of Bitches Brewing using shitloads of juniper berries among other things

Definitely another to look out for as the last version was one of my favourite saisons of last year, with this one set to topple it’s predecessor on the flavour front.

In other RedWillow Brewery visit news, on the food front expect further foodie treats of pulled pork made using RedWillow beer in the marinade, pork fed on RedWillow spent grain, served on rolls using RedWillow yeast. That’s if you’ve room left after grabbing your breakfast pie at the Treacle Tap.

Finally, by way of making your beer experience during your visit a special one, I need to give a massive thank you to Claudia and the guys of Port Street Beer House and IndyMan Beer Con for kindly donating the use of their mini (portable) two keg draught line for the day, which makes life so much easier for Toby and co at the brewery.

Brewery tours will be available and subject to numbers staggered throughout the visit.

We expect to arrive at Red Willow at roughly 1PM and will be there until between 3-3:30PM to give the next venue a chance to serve folks with minimum delays.

So, the stage is set and the line up complete, look out for the itinerary over the next couple of days. We are all ready to rumble, all we need now is to hope for good weather and lots of loverly people, in other words, YOU!

This is set to be a great afternoon of beer, be there or regret it later…

Cheers

Bitches Brewing – Brewbitches bitches bitch – Isosceles #Twissupdate 5

bb_tumblr_icon2Beer folk are ace, fact!

On the very night I pitched my idea of holding the Macc Twissup to the proposed venues, the idea of this brew too was conceived via twitter whilst sat at the bar of The Wharf. I was chatting to folk about the idea and mentioned to Brian of Huddersfield’s awesome beer establishment The Grove.

Brian or @GroveBrewBri as he is now known has had a few handles over the last few years, originally “GroveBri” he graduated to “BrewBitchBri” whilst on a mammoth tour of work experience for want of a better description, at some, or most of the UK’s finest breweries, with a view to starting a brewery back in Huddersfield. During this time he was renowned for being every brewer on the tours “brew-bitch’, and as such on his return Bitches Brewing Co was born.

Since then, Brian has gone from strength to strength cuckoo brewing with Gadds creating Graduation IPA and at Quantum where he and Jay produced Chameleon IPA and the awesome Choc & Chilli Stout, one of my favourite beers of Indyman 2012.

bjb-web-593x363For todays brew he joined forces with Rob Hamilton at Black Jack another relatively new brewery a rather handily (hefty) stones throw away from The Marble Arch in Manchester. So on a warm sunny day, Wednesday 5th of June I took a day off work and headed to Mancunia..

The idea was set, I wanted to try to create a Belgian style IPA hopefully with an American twist, I say hopefully as although this was my second brew day in four days, I’d previously done none at all and hence hadn’t got a bloody clue. We were also joined by another Grove dweller Matt, who was promptly named the brew-bitches bitches bitch.

Team assembled, we promptly set to work…

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Actually Rob set to work while Brian was checking out his hop store..

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IMG_6203IMG_6207Larking about aside, the three of us had a good old rummage through the Black Jack hop store, which barring a couple of pre beer destined bags of hops Rob gave us free rein to use what ever we wanted. This was a great learning experience for me as although I love hoppy beers, it’s very difficult to pick individual varieties out without normally getting the chance to handle the fresh raw product.

After half an hour or so of rubbing and sniffing (hops) we narrowed it down to four, which were used in two separate additions of three if that makes sense. Apollo, Columbus and Pheonix first, followed by Amarillo, Columbus and Phoenix.

Many of you reading this may have already realised the significance of the brew date, Wednesday 5th of June was the day of Simon “Scoop” Johnson’s funeral and celebration of his life. Sadly as we only had this date on which to brew this beer it was decided that we go ahead, a decision on which I’m sure he would have approved. Suitable refreshments were taken however to raise a glass at the appropriate hour.

IMG_6208I doubt Simon would have disapproved too much on the glassware having after apparently chugging one at Orval, straight off the bottling line, directly in front of the head brewer.. He would however I am positive, guffawed muchly at my piss poor attempts at pouring… (well it was a little warm, that’s my excuse)

IMG_6310Brewing finished and checks made it was looking like ending at around 6.8% ABV which was slightly higher than we anticipated, as it goes after a little dry hopping with more Columbus it finally finished at a quaffable 7% ABV. 🙂

Isosceles IPA is now the second completely new brew we will have for you guys on the 29th and is for me the most exciting, having had such an involvement in it’s concept, production and of course it being named after the beery day itself.

ImageThis beer will be launched at our last stop of the day The Wharf at around 5pm, a full itinerary to be confirmed later this week (watch this space).

In terms of other beers Chris has lined up, he’s keeping things pretty close to his chest, but did let slip that his hop rocket will be out and fully loaded and that he also has a cask of Old Manchester brooding somewhere in the darkest corner of the cellar…

Be afraid…

A Young Pretending Hand Drawn Monkey

187836_356588124357504_1587909104_nIt’s meet the brewer time again tonight down at Congletons coolest purveyors of all things fine in beer and food The Young Pretender and if the last one (which featured Red Willow) is anything to go by it’s going to be a belter. Yes it’s a school night and I really should be at home resting, but a bloggers work is never done and I’m making that sacrifice, for you..

399346_374564355966595_452287788_nThis time up we have another rising star brewery from Huddersfield, Hand Drawn Monkey, what is it about that area that produces such a fantastic range of brewers, is it literally “something in the water”?

Whatever it is I like it, in fact I may move house, by Friday.

I won’t pretend to know a great deal about HDM, I don’t, this is what the guys at Port Street said about them prior to a recent visit. Words spread fast though and these guys have been involved in some cracking collaborations of late. Mallinsons, Quantum and Bitches Brewing that I know of, some of which I’ve managed to try along with a couple of the core range, all of them being rather good.

23385_392659894157041_426088728_n - Version 2Tonight though, I’m expecting to sample a wider selection and see what Hand Drawn Monkey are all about, hopefully by live blogging throughout the night I’ll share that with you, but that remains to be seen, if the space below this fails, I failed too….

Hey, I made it this far and first up is Malpa, an English Pale ale brewed with Polish “Junga” hops. Quite light but very quaffable with loads of bitterness, session city!

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tbc