It might be officially National Beer Day, but every day is beer day here at WOW247.
Whether it’s a hoppy IPA or a full-bodied Porter, our city editors and beer writers don’t need any excuse to raise a schooner to the best craft beer specialists around the country.
With this in mind, here’s our guide to the best beer Britain has to offer…
Taking its cue from the US craft beer scene of the 1990s, in the last decade or so London has become a hotspot for new breweries and bars. In the contemporary bar scene you’re spoilt for choice, and the capital is home to the nation’s biggest range of breweries.
While it may have built its reputation on the big family brewers like Robinsons, Lees, Holts and Hydes, Manchester has also embraced the craft beer revolution. Each year the city plays host to the Indy Man Beer Con and the Manchester Beer Festival, and there are countless bars offering impressive ranges.
From well-stocked bars like Inn Deep and Munro’s in the West End, to forward-thinking breweries like Drygate and WEST in the east of the city, you’re never short of options in Glasgow. Add amazing bottle shops like Hippo Beers and Valhalla’s Goat to the mix and Glasgow is a hoppy heaven.
With micro-breweries like Barney’s springing up alongside the long established brands, and pubs like The Brauhaus and The Hanging Bat offering expanded ale menus, Edinburgh’s reputation for quality beer is gaining ground on its festival city status.
Leeds has become a veritable haven for ale aficionados in recent times, with a wealth of inviting venues in which to drink and be merry. Bars like Tapped and Friends of Ham offer specialist menus to try something new, while breweries like Kirkstall and Sunbeam Ales ensure the city’s reputation as a producer is stronger than ever.
The craft beer revolution has taken Britain by storm in recent years, with almost 20 breweries in the city of Sheffield alone. One of the best places to sample these is in Sheffield’s very own Valley of Beer, Kelham Island, but there are plenty of great pubs dotted around the city and events like the Steel City Beer Festival.
• 7 traditional pubs you have to try in Sheffield
• Kelham Island: Sheffield’s ultimate pub crawl?
• 5 of the best beer gardens in Sheffield
• 5 of the best beer shops in Sheffield
• 10 of the best bars in Sheffield
Cardiff has a thriving nightlife, so it’s no surprise that some of the UK’s favourite craft beer bars reside here, such as the Urban Tap House and Porter’s. It’s also a big brewing town, with famous names like Brains alongside up and comers like Zero Degrees and Pipes.
Newcastle has a long history of association with beer. Newcastle Brown Ale is one of the most widely distributed beers in the world and is celebrated as being a cornerstone of UK breweries, but there’s much more to the contemporary scene than the Toon’s signature ale, with bars like Pleased To Meet You, The Bridge Tavern and dAt bAr catering to even the most discerning of drinkers.
Bristol and the South West have long been associated with cider and scrumpy – but recently it’s developed a taste for real ale too. The potent and tasty mix of malt, hops and barley has led to a rise in the number of beverage-serving emporiums offering some of the most quaffable beers in the country.
Belfast is a city transformed in many ways in the last 20 years, but none of the changes have matched the pace of the local bar scene. Add to this the craft beer resurgence and what you end up with is a potent mix of good beer, good people, and amazing craic.
With the wider region now home to some of the best breweries around, and top-notch ale flourishing in pubs, restaurants and shops throughout the city, Birmingham is on firmly on the UK beer map.
Liverpool is no exception to the boom in craft beer that’s sweeping the nation. From traditional pubs like The Ship and Mitre to specialist watering holes like Inn Beer Emporium, the city has a range of options for the discerning beer drinker.