It has been a busy month for a number of people, including those from the Wirral and St Helens, preparing the Autumn edition of MerseyAle. As chair of the MeresyAle group, I thank all involved in producing the magazine in such a short time.
I am disappointed that I am not receiving any news from the wider branch membership. Surely there must be pub or brewery news that I am not aware of! Even news that a pub is now selling a different real ale is of interest. We may then decide to visit that pub.
I would be happy to include any articles on your favourite pub. Should anybody wish to write a Pub Walk, such an article would also be most welcome.
I am also surprised that nobody has told me of any events being organised around our area.
Credits for other news: Ian Rayner & Tony Morgan
Copy date for the next Newsletter 30th September.
The September Newsletter can also be downloaded1.4 MB
CAMRA nationally are requesting that all members reset their password. Most are still using the default postcode password. This has now considered in breach of the data protection act, as people can become aware of a member’s number and also know where they live. A scrupulous person could then log onto that member’s account and access and possibly change personal data. People receiving this newsletter as an email will already have an email address registered with CAMRA. Others need to log into the national website and register an email address in the My Membership section.
I have just reset my password in a couple of minutes. If you are still using your postcode as your password, please click www.camra.org.uk
Click Sign In at the right of the options bar.
After doing so, click on the My Membership button.
You will see a blue box in the centre of the screen. Click on the Reset your password now! button.
Enter your Membership Number and your registered Email Address and click on the Request Password Reset button.
You will be immediately sent an email, open this, and click on click here.
This will direct you to a web page where you can change your password. After doing so you can be directed to the CAMRA home page and then log in with your new password
HEADLINE NEWS – NEW CITY CENTRE MICRO BAR
Hard Times and Misery a microbar at bottom of Maryland Street, near Rodney Street, opened on 19th August. Owners Jan and Greig, run it themselves and based the concept on the type of bar they would like to visit themselves. One with not only good real ale but with artisan spirits as well. The real ales are served directly from the cask (on gravity) very much as you see at a beer festival. They have their own pins (36 pint) barrels which local brewers fill for them, which means there is more choice of beer. Firkins which are twice as big are also used. At present there are four or five beers from local brewers, such as Rock the Boat, Melwood, Neptune and Ad Hop are available. Fridges under the bar hold a good range of local bottled ales including some from Mad Hatter. The bar is very small so would be quite full with a dozen in, but there is also an upstairs seating area.
Greig told me, “We'd like to provide an outlet for the little guy shunned by the big distributors; we try to buy direct whenever we can. From really good local real ales, to boss bottled craft beers, to fantastic small batch spirits. All independent. All British. No tv, no sports, no gaming. Just a warm welcome with an atmosphere that is conducive to conversation with complete strangers. We'll always be changing, always trying something new and always listening! If you know of something we should try, please tell us."
I asked Greig about the bar's name. I was told me that during an evening not so long ago, one of our fine distillers was lamenting to us about the bleary 3am bottling sessions and the blisters from hand labelling bottles.
"That's the blood, sweat & tears", I said.
"No", came the reply, "It's hard times & misery".
Please see the What Pub entry for opening times.
For some time the Rum Porter brewed by Boggart Hole Clough Brewery had been a popular choice at the Vernon Arms on Dale Street. Unfortunately the brewery ceased trading, so the beer is no longer available. To breach the gap a new house beer has been commissioned from the Stamps Brewery, Rhum Noir, 4.6%. This joins the pub’s first house beer on tap, Johnny Handsome brewed by Liverpool Organic.
Yates at Queens Square reopened after being refurbished. There are still four hand pumps here, two with national brands and two from breweries such as Titanic.
While visiting Hard Times & Misery I noticed that the Hope & Anchor on Maryland Street has not had any cask beer available recently, just craft keg and bottles. Hopefully the real ale will return with the students.
Frank's on Smithdown Road now has a third hand pump fitted and there are now usually two beers on tap. Marston's Wainwright has been joined by Liverpool Organic 24 Carat.
Not far away, the Willow Bank, has been refurbished and now has been painted and signed in the green colours of latest owner Greene King. Up to ten cask beers can be available at the busiest times. The brewery's own beers, including house beer Salix, and one from Castle Rock are regularly available. Guest beers tend to be from the more established breweries.
After the coach trip to Derby, I changed buses on Allerton Road, using the bus stop outside the Blackburne Eatery. There was just enough time to go inside to sup a glass of Rock the Boat Mussel Wreck. It was good to see real ale back on here after dispense problems have been sorted.
The Hare & Hounds in West Derby village has had six hand pulls installed. Currently Greene King IPA and Bombardier are available.
Andy from Ad Hop Brewery has told me that he intends half of each of their future brews to be cask ale. The remainder will be sold as key keg or bottled. Advances in canning equipment could mean this method of packaging being used soon. Most of us probably have not drunk a canned beer recently. Andy reports a good beer in a can, is as good as, if not better than, one in the bottle.
The Ship & Mitre is now brewing, using the Stamps brewery. Joe Murphy brews at weekends and has his own fermenters. Beers are: Sublime, a 3.8% Citrus beer Level, a 4.2% Bitter Silhouette, a 4.5% Stout Radiant, a 5.0% Light stronger ale One or two of these are normally available at the bar. Ben reports different beers will be brewed for their Wirral Beer Festival. The outside of the Ship has been repainted and with new signage looks smart.
Big Bog Brewery held an open day at their brewery on the Sunday of the recent bank holiday weekend. Similar events will be held again in the future. The branch has been invited to visit their brewery in Speke for our October Get Togethe,r on the evening of Wednesday the 19th.
Tuesday 6th September – Committee meeting.
Sunday 11th September – Sunday Lunch Meet Up will be the second Sunday this month. Meet in the Jawbone Tavern, Litherland Road, Bootle from 1.00pm. After eating we will tour other pubs in the area as detailed in July’s Pub Walk..
Sunday 18th September – Ferry Across the Mersey and our annual walk from Seacombe to New Brighton via a few pubs. Meet at the Pier Head Ferry Terminal in time for the 12 noon ferry.
Thursday 22nd September – Monthly meeting on a Thursday for a change. Meet the Rock the Boat Brewer. Augustus John, Peach Street, Liverpool University.. 7.30pm for 8.00pm start.
Thursday 22nd to Sunday 25th September – Beer festival at the Masonic Pub Garston. See advert on page 18 of MerseyAle.
Friday 23rd September – Afternoon get together at the Masonic beer festival. Take the 1329 train from Central to South Parkway or make your own way to the pub.
Thursday 29th September to Saturday 1st October. Real Ale Events beer festival at St Georges Hall. See advert on back page of MerseyAle.
Saturday 1st October – Coach trip to Broughton-in-Furness pubs beer festival.
Wednesday 5th October – Committee meeting
Friday 7th to Saturday 8th October – Beer, Cider & Gin Festival at Liverpool Cricket Club, Aigburth Road. See https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/liverpoolcc
Wednesday 12th to Sunday 23rd October – Wetherspoon Autumn Beer Festival. See https://www.jdwetherspoon.com/real-ale-festival
Thursday 20th to Monday 24th October – Autumn Beer Festival at the Cricketers pub St Helens.