Horsforth Brewery Open Tap (02/03)

I said at the start of the year that I needed to get out more. Not because I need a hobby and spend my life indoors (although if I could I might), but more that I need to go visit more breweries, tap rooms and meet more people. So after a couple of weekends brewing together, my brother and I decided that we would go out and drink beer instead of making it. We did sample our latest efforts beforehand, however, but more of that to come at a later date!

As the owner of Horsforth Brewery, Mark, is a close friend/ex-colleague of Andy’s we had planned on visiting for some time, but finally got round to it on this particular weekend. After a short train ride from Wakefield, and a stop off at the chippy on the walk up, we arrived to a warm welcome outside as we finished off our lunch. Not only by Mark himself but also by Brewery dog Ernie who, needless to say, quickly befriends any patron before heading off to find where he left his last snack…

Once our chips were finished and Ernie had allowed us to make our way to the bar, we managed to sample his latest beers, of which seemed to be in plentiful supply. On the taps when we arrived were his Horsforth Pale, Aubretia (Black IPA), Mosaic IPA and Schwarz Rose (Wheat Bear). The Mosaic was clearly a popular choice as the keg had just run dry as we ordered, soon to be replaced by another of his wheat beer variants, Weisse Rose. The initial disappointment was quickly overcome with a round of Horsforth Pale and, having had it in a bottle previously, I enjoyed it more so than before. Beer on tap is always nicer so they say!

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Whilst we supped the first round we took time to appreciate the set up he has and, albeit on a much smaller scale, how there are similarities to the equipment that we use, thinking maybe one day we could have something similar. The tap soon began to fill, a sign that people will help and support local beer, all having a mutual appreciation for the open day. Only having them on the first Saturday of each month will surely help drive peoples want to come back mind, and with good reason.

The Horsforth Pale was followed by an Aubretia for me and a bottle of Zythos Pale for Andy the former being a first for me as I had never tried a Black IPA before. Not being a fan of stouts or porters, I was willing to give this new style a try and was surprised how much I enjoyed it. Having the light body of an IPA but with the hints and flavours of a stout, this seemed like a perfect blend of the two styles opening my mind to try more in the future. I would certainly buy this again too!

Once our glasses were empty, unfortunately it was time for us to head back for our train into town. Despite only being able to stop for a couple of rounds it was nice to see what Mark has done with the brewery, how successful his open days are and that the brewery clearly has a successful future ahead of it. If nothing else, it also assured that we would have to come back to one of his next open days and see what he has on next time. Hopefully (as Tweeted) his Session Pale collaboration with Mill Valley Brewery, Wild Horses.

You can find Horsforth Brewery on Twitter @horsforthbrewer and on Facebook/Instagram by searching for ‘Horsforth Brewery’. 

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