When it rained last Friday I was left with a dilemma. I wanted to go to a beer festival, and my opinions seemed to be the Smithfield at Manchester,(already criticised on this blog) or the Pump Room at Halifax. I chose the latter,since I thought I would get less wet.
On arrival I saw the makeshift bar to the right of the main doors, graced with plenty of handpumps. This looked promising. I selected a beer off the bar, took a programme and sat down to peruse it at my leisure, planning the rest of my afternoon's drinking.
This was my first mistake. I assumed the programme listed the beers on the bar. Strangely when I checked, none of the beers in the list were on the bar. The ones available were ok, nothing special, and on reading the list, nothing on there grabbed my attention either.
I had a few beers, the best of the lot being Joeys Bitter (3.5%) from Holts at Manchester, packing a lot of flavour into a fairly weak beer. However, seeing a gap in the showers, I made my way back to Huddersfield. When I showed the festival list to one of the local licencees it raised a few eyebrows and a glimmer of recognition, and shortly after I was presented with an exact copy of my list which had been sent out the previous month as a list of available beers from a well known wholesaler!
I am not against festivals being sourced from one wholesaler, and in some cases it will be inevitable, but surely the festival programme should not be a list provided by the wholesaler with the prices removed !! (pic courtesy of Pub Utopia)