Brew York Keg Fest 2018

It doesn’t seem like two minutes since I was last visiting Brew York for their excellent City of Ale Festival back when the days were long, the sun was warm and the summer felt like it would last forever. But now, with the cold of winter approaching, we wandered into an evening session filled with beer, food and good company.

Brew York’s recently upgraded tap room/beer hall sits within the city limits of York, within easy walking distance of the town centre. For anyone who hasn’t been before, it is an excellent place to stop by for a couple of causal drinks even when there isn’t a festival in town. What with an apparently busy schedule, it’s not very often that there isn’t something going down over at Brew York.

Although on somewhat of a smaller scale than their previous festival we visited, Keg Fest showcased beers from further afield with the likes of Cloudwater, Lervig and Elusive Brewing all in attendance. Given the time of year, all brewers and eateries were housed inside but the organisation was spot on and did not feel at all cramped. Both upstairs and downstairs were open, with beers on offer in every available space possible alongside the food stalls. We found a free table downstairs in the brewery area, conveniently next to the bar, but ideally placed to access other areas too.

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As we visited on Saturday and the festival starting on Friday, we soon noticed that some of the more popular breweries had already run dry on some of their offerings. A notable disappointment for us was the Cloudwater IPA that had sold out, but you can’t grumble too much as this is only to be expected if the festival is particularly busy. Thankfully, there were plenty of other beers (both old and new) on offer which more than made up for a couple of absences throughout the night.

Particular stand outs for me included Elusive Brewing’s Hazy Duke and Overdrive Lap 10 along with Abbeydale’s Citizen. It was also good to have a natter with some of the people behind the taps beyond offering their advice on the beers which they had brought with them. It is moments like this that I really enjoy about going to festivals and meeting new people; you very rarely bump into anyone you couldn’t sit and have a good chinwag with over a few beers.

It is also worth mentioning the food that was on offer on the night too, with Brew York’s own kitchen churning out some beautiful burgers/barbecue inspired dishes and Mokosh bringing a Slavic approach to their dumpling bar. I opted for the Big Cheese burger and Ana settled for slow cooked beef cheek covered in sauce and spring onions. Both were delicious and we would happily eat each respective dish again.

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Much like our last visit, we weren’t left disappointed. The atmosphere and layout of Brew York is spot on and I wish this could be my local drinking spot, although my bank balance may not thank me if it was! Despite having an excellent evening, I think that my favourite part of the trip may be the free glass you got upon entry; a small tumbler-style offering which is reminiscent of those from other brewers such as Verdant. I had been wanting one like this for a while so I was thrilled to be bringing one home at the end of the night.

Brew York can be found across most social media pages by searching their name, as can the breweries mentioned above with all being very interactive with their customers which is excellent to see!

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