Saturday, July 21, 2007

Beer 'n' Brass

Another potentially crappy wet miserable Saturday afternoon in Huddersfield was saved by a healthy dose of the two things the town can take real pride in - great ale and a decent brass band. The combination could be enjoyed by taking in The Star Inn's popular Summer Beer Festival at Folly Hall and the Marsden Silver Band, appearing a few hundred yards away at the Rat & Ratchet on Chapel Hill.

A record seventy plus ales were available on handpump at the Star, and after a rather mediocre Spring fest by their high standards, this weekend saw a real return to form with an incredible variety of quality beers, many from new brewers. Anyone who still needs convincing of the healthy state of British independent brewing need look no further than a Star beer festival.

Apologies for the state of the menu (and the guy who photographed it)! Click to read

Personal favourites this time around included a very sweet Banoffee flavoured beer from those quality gimmick specialists Coach House Brewery, a sharp and tangy number from Marble called Lemony Ginger and Magnum, another classic from Pictish.

A view from smokers corner at The Star Inn

Braving the elements up the road was the multi-award winning Marsden Silver Band who are now sponsored by Ossett Brewery and are currently touring as many of their pubs as can accommodate them.

A stirring and often very moving performance was well appreciated and resulted in a couple of encores despite the worsening weather. At one point I wondered if it was actually possible to drown whilst playing the euphonium in heavy rain!

The band are slated to appear at the brewery's open day event next month, details of which will be posted here soon.

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