BEERS AND BREWERIES

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Nottingham's annual CAMRA beer festival has a long established reputation for offering customers the biggest possible selection of quality cask ales. Last years' festival offered a staggering choice of 1,270 different casks of real ale which we confidently believe was the widest wide range of real ales ever seen in the UK and almost certainly the entire world! This year we are still working on the logistics but we guarantee that there will be over ONE THOUSAND different casks of real ale!

Gluten Free and Vegan beers. For 2016 we are hoping to offer a far wider selection than the four gluten free beers that were available in 2015 as more breweries have now started to produce them. it is impossible to estimate how many we will obtain at this early stage but we hope that figure will well exceed a minimum of 25. Details will be published here when known.

Gluten Free Beers

We have searched high and low for cask gluten free beers for this year's festival. Unfortunately we have not been as successful as we would have liked. However last year we only managed to find two where as this year there will be 19 for you to try.

1648 BREWERY - BLACK VELVET - 5.5%
ALLENDALE - GLUTEN FREE PALE ALE - 4.7%
FIRST CHOP - JAM - 4.0%
FIRST CHOP - PIP - 6.3%
FIRST CHOP - POD - 4.2%
FIRST CHOP - SUP - 3.9%
IRWELL WORKS - BREADCRUMBS - 3.6%
NENE VALLEY - BIG BANG THEORY - 5.3%
NENE VALLEY - RELEASE THE CHIMPS - 4.4%
NENE VALLEY - UNEXPECTED PLEASURES - 3.6%
NENE VALLEY - STARLESS STOUT - 4.2%
NENE VALLEY DXB - DICK’S EXTRAORDINARY BITTER - 4.6%
NENE VALLEY JIM IRVING PALE 5.6%
POPPYLAND - EAST BEACH IPA - 6.5%
ST PETERS - G FREE - 4.2%
WOLD TOP - AGAINST THE GRAIN - 4.5%
WOLD TOP - SCARBOROUGH FAIR - 6.0%
KENNET & AVON - SAVERNAKE - 5.3%
RAW - INDEPENDENCE - 4.1%

1648 BREWERY - BLACK VELVET - 5.5% Creamed oatmeal stout brewed with flaked oatmeal
ALLENDALE - GLUTEN FREE PALE ALE - 4.7% : Full flavoured pale ale featuring aromatic American hops
FIRST CHOP - JAM - 4.0% : Mango pale, Pale amber. Not a fruit beer, a beer with fruit
FIRST CHOP - PIP - 6.3% : Grapefruit saison, hints of banana, oranges and grapefruits
FIRST CHOP - POD - 4.2% : Classic vanilla oatmeal stout
FIRST CHOP - SUP - 3.9% : Session IPA, pale amber but no holding back with the hops
IRWELL WORKS - BREADCRUMBS - 3.6% : Session strength pale ale, light and hoppy
NENE VALLEY - BIG BANG THEORY - 5.3% - Pale ale with a huge hop aroma giving way to malty sweetness
NENE VALLEY - RELEASE THE CHIMPS - 4.4% : An IPA for everyday drinking.
NENE VALLEY - UNEXPECTED PLEASURES - 3.6% : Light clean refrehing beer packed with Nelson Sauvin hops
NENE VALLEY - STARLESS STOUT - 4.2% - Smooth oat stout, refreshing dark grain flavours with a slight hop bite to finish
NENE VALLEY DXB - DICK’S EXTRAORDINARY BITTER - 4.6% - Chestnut in colour with plenty of maltiness & a late-hopped spicy character
NENE VALLEY - JIM IRVING PALE - 5.6% - Full-bodied, with a big malty taste backed with heaps of zesty hop flavour
POPPYLAND - EAST BEACH IPA - 6.5% : Strong, hoppy, pale ale featuring Maris Otter coastal malt
ST PETERS - G FREE - 4.2% : Clean, crisp, ale with a pilsner lager style finish
WOLD TOP - AGAINST THE GRAIN - 4.5% : Bitter beer with a citrus aftertaste
WOLD TOP - SCARBOROUGH FAIR - 6.0% : India Pale Ale
KENNET & AVON - SAVERNAKE - 5.3% - Black stout,  licorice, coffee, chocolate aromas
RAW - INDEPENDENCE - 4.1% - American pale ale

(NB - for a quick glance the beers are shown by Brewer, Name and % - for those requiring a description the list is repeated with additional details)

Vegan Beers

Similarly, we were able to offer a fairly wide selection of beers suitable for vegans in 2015, the list that we published in advance promised up to 80, but in fact when beers were delivered we actually found from the cask labels that there were perhaps another fifty that suppliers had not told us of in advance. As more and more brewers stop adding isinglass finings to their beers we are optimistic that over 200 of our beers in 2016 may be vegan friendly. Again details will be published here when known.

From the Nottingham Drinker No. 136 available on-line

At this year’s Robin Hood Beer and Cider Festival you will notice numerous beers marked as“unfined” and will no doubt be wanting to know what this means. Well it means they are suitable for vegans but there is a lot more to it than that and omnivores will be just as interested to sample these interesting brews.

Given enough time beer will clear naturally, but there is often not time to allow it to settle in the cellar for a couple of weeks or more, while nature does it’s thing. So it has long been the practice to add a suspension of tropical fish swim bladders mixed with sodium metabisulphite (a disinfectant and preservative). This is called isinglass and many beers at our festival will be cleared by this method. The process is known as fining the beer.

However it is becoming accepted by some drinkers that beer does not have to be crystal clear to taste good. We accept that a wheat beer is going to be cloudy and we perhaps expect a very hoppy IPA to have some hop haze – so what’s the difference? Nothing, there is nothing special about crystal clear beer and naturally conditioned, hazy beer has loads of flavour. An alternative to fining the beer would be to filter it, this will clear any haze and it is a vegan friendly method. But filtering also strips out flavour, the one thing brewers have worked hard to put in. Ever wondered why keg beers and lagers are tasteless compared to cask beer? So will hazy beer give you a bad stomach? Not if the haziness is caused by yeast suspension, as in our unfined beers (unless you’re allergic to yeast). Brewers yeast is anatural product and a source of Vitamin B and protein. So look out for beers marked as “Unfined” at our festival and give them a try, we think you will agree it is worth it. And of course these beers are suitable for vegans to enjoy. Watch those ABV’s though .

Locale Logo

As you might expect from the branch that pioneered CAMRA's LocAle scheme we showcased beer from our local breweries and in 2015 over 25% of all beer consumed came from breweries located within 20 miles of the festival. We also source beers from all over the country and in 2014 we featured cask beers from 350 different UK breweries.

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The 2016 Beer Festival List can be found in .pdf or Word or Excel Spreadsheet format by clicking on the appropriate links.

Vegan Beer list available here

The 2016 Beer Festival Programme can be downloaded in .pdf format here or from the Matelot Marketing website here

Page refreshed : 9th March 2017

Image(s) on this page information details and credits : SIBA logo from the SIBA web-site. The Nottingham Brewery Stand image is from a private collection and the image featuring a world record breaking number of casks finds its way to this web-page courtesy of www.worldrecordsacademy.org.