Nineteen to 2019


The end of the traditional summer holidays sees a step up in activity for organisers of the North’s biggest celebration of traditional and modern beers and ciders.

Planning for the Manchester Beer and Cider Festival starts with a review of the previous year’s event in March. But as the lighter nights fade, many contracts are secured and valued sponsors signed up. Dedicated beer orderers (tough work but someone has to do it) have spent the last few months researching new beers and checking the availability of old favourites.

Organised by the Greater Manchester branches of the Campaign For Real Ale (CAMRA), the 2018 festival featured over 750 different beers and ciders. There was an amazing 14% increase in attendance to 15,478; and those drinkers obliged by downing almost 65,000 pints.

The festival promises the return of firm favourites alongside debuts from exciting new breweries. Almost all of the dozen brewery bars are now signed up for January. Last year’s introduction of the Little Ireland bar was a winner with all the specially imported beers sold out, so an extended range is planned.

The foreign beer bars are always popular, with curated beers from the ‘big three’ European brewing countries of Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic to the fore. And Manchester’s reputation of providing the biggest cider and perry selection in the North will again be fiercely defended. (more…)

MBCF on the BBC – Watch on iPlayer

Julia Somerville meets visitors
Faced with complaints about OTHER food and drink festivals, producers at BBC’s “Rip Off Britain: Food” series wanted to see how a festival committed to customer service and continual improvement is run…

Presenter Julia Somerville and the BBC crew visited MBCF 2018 on Thursday 25th January, conducting interviews with brewers serving on their bars, food stall holders, organisers and of course you, our visitors.

Julia Somerville & Brass Castle BreweryThe episode aired on Wednesday 25th April and is now available on BBC iPlayer

Coverage starts at 16 minutes and 30 seconds in. It will be available on iPlayer until 10am on 25th May. To watch iPlayer you must be a BBC licence fee payer.