Friday was a good day in the 'Timbo Beer Calendar', chance to get to 3 beer festivals without paying an arm and a leg in fares to get there. It was a day to go to Halifax. There were pub festivals at the Three Pigeons, at Dirty Dicks and the Camra do at Square Chapel. All within easy walking distance of each other as well, seemed like a plan.
Luckily for me Dirty Dicks opened first at 1100 am. It is a 'must visit' pub for me in any event, and the chance of extra beers that their festival promised only made that better. So, settled there as the doors opened I was well impressed by the range on offer. They had augmented their usual bar with another 5 handpumps to make a total of 15 beers available, (they promise to have 40 on offer through the weekend, all through the pumps so when one runs off it is replaced by another festival beer). The initial range was good enough though, and I was soon sampling Landlord's Friend 'Mr Smith', a local Halifax brewery that I have found difficult to find in the past. A bit malty for my taste though. I much preferred my second choice, Cap House 'Pure Diamond', light and subtly hopped, a brewery certainly on the way up. I followed this with Empire 'Twilight', again light and hoppy and very drinkable, and Geeves 'No1'. Another beer from a newish brewery - the brewery I had had before, but the beer has somehow passed me by. A good start to what I hoped would be a good days ticking.
Sadly, I was too confident too soon. I thought I would let the crowds die down at the Camra festival so made my way down to the 'Three Pigeons', again promising a beer festival along the same lines as Dirty Dicks, with additional pumps providing a larger range of beer than usual. I had not accounted for their poor timekeeping. The makeshift bar was still in the process of being put together, and there seemed no chance of it operating in the near future. There was a range of beer on the pub bar but the 8 pumps offered only one interesting beer - shame because the list I picked up had some good stuff on - but Whittlebury was a new brewery for me so I chose a half of their 'Spring Frolic' and settled down for a read. Fortunately someone had left me a beer list for the Camra festival. Another disappointment. Was it worth my while calling in for a couple of beers, or should I cut my losses and run.
I chose the latter option. Back to Dirty Dicks to sweep up Old Spot 'FSB', at 6.4% it was a 'Firkin Strong Beer' but sadly not to my taste, and back to Blighty. I have to say that if Dirty Dicks had been the only festival on I would have been well impressed, good beer range, knowledgable and friendly staff and beer in pleasant surroundings . An ideal way to spend a morning. Shame about the others, but one cannot have everything.