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Apr 19, 2017

Hop City 2017

The much anticipated Hop City 2017 presented by Northern Monk has come and gone, a new addition to the ever growing list of Craft Beer festivals in the UK.  Billed as the “UK’s First Hop-Led Beer Festival” it certainly didn’t disappoint.

Held between 13th-15th April over Easter Weekend, the venue was Northern Monk’s Old Flax Store.  The Old Flax Store is Northern Monk’s original brewery which also houses a taproom and an Events Space. Despite moving the bulk of their operations to a new brewing facility, which will increase their capacity significantly, it is nice to hear that craft beer will still be produced at The Old Flax Store with the facility specialising in small batch releases.

Hop City was split into five sessions, an evening session on the Thursday followed by afternoon and evening sessions on the Friday and Saturday. Crafty Beer Cans popped along to the afternoon session on the Friday, very excited at the prospect of trying a range of hop led beer styles.

As is usually the case at these events a token system was in operation, which I personally think works quite well – cuts down on waiting around as there is no hanging about for change. When we arrived at 10.45 am (doors opened at 11 am) there was already a sizeable queue (despite the chilly Yorkshire morning!) of craft beer fans eagerly waiting to get their lips round the hoppy stuff!

Once inside there was a stellar cast of UK and Worldwide breweries (see line up at the end of the article) serving a wide range of fantastic hoppy beers – IPA’s, Session IPA’s, Black IPA’s and Belgian IPA’s were all on show. Beers were served in 1/3 pint glasses which again, in my humble opinion, is the perfect size when wanting to sample a variety of beers – it is also fits nicely in the cupboard at home!

The event was laid out over the three floors of the Old Flax Store which worked really well and added something a little bit different to the common one floor beer festival layout. This was complemented by an outdoor space, referred to as the ‘Refectory Gardens’ which had both covered (a must for April!) and uncovered spaces. The ‘Refectory Gardens’ also housed a number of Street Food outlets, perfect for lining the stomach – the ‘Dirty Burger’ I purchased from Patty Smith’s Burgers certainly hit the spot.

For someone who loves their hop-led beer styles (who doesn’t love an IPA…) this is the perfect festival to attend and I have no doubt in my mind that there will be a 2018 version – so make sure you look out for any future announcements.

Breweries that were pouring (UK unless notified)

The Alchemist (USA)

Ilkley Brewery

Legitimate Industries

Wilde Child Brewing Co.

Ridgeside Brewery

Runaway Brewery

North Brewing Co.

Marble Brewery

Fourpure Brewing

Partizan Brewing

Northern Monk Brew Co.

Zapato Brewery

Refectory Brew Co.

Weird Beard Brew Co.

Stigbergets Bryggeri (Sweden)

Cloudwater Brew Co.

Alefarm Brewing (Denmark)

Brew by Numbers

Verdant

Wylam Brewery

Magic Rock Brewing

Sireb Craft Brew

Other Half Brewing (USA)

The Kernel Brewery

Beavertown Brewery

Dry & Bitter (Denmark)

Deya Brewery

O/O Brewing (Sweden)

Brewdog