Last year – in about September – I was contacted by a fella about a new little micro pub he was going to be opening “soon”. Seemed like a decent bloke. Even offered to sponsor a cask at #ISBF2015 too. I gladly accepted and offered an advert in the programme.
Then disaster struck. There was to be no opening “soon”. Huge building issues. He didn’t want the advert, but still sponsored a beer.
His name was (is!) Gareth. The bar was to be called “The Brink”. I was gutted for him, but had a sneaking suspicion that this was a bloke not to be deterred by mere rotten floors, or the discovery of undetected nasties in the fabric of the building.
He was just going to make sure that everything was right. That was the unspoken feeling I got.
I met him briefly at St Sebastian’s (ALL of my “meetings” were brief during the Festival!) and my initial thoughts were reinforced.
This bloke would overcome.
Slow forward to mid March. And I’m stood outside a building site. To the words “Come in Jim, mind the stairs”….
The day before he opens!
We chatted. I took no photos inside. I daren’t. For fear of tripping over something!
I like Gareth’s style.
I could see that there has been an enormous amount of love and thought and care that has gone into this place. Even as a building site, I could see past the tins of paint and ladders and wiring and see that this looks classy.
A simply lovely bar space with 5 cask handpulls and 4 Craft keg fonts.
All to dispense beers sourced exclusively from Greater Manchester breweries! The man is singing a sweet sweet song.
Gareth cares passionately about sourcing locally. He loves the beers made around this great city, as do I. We both believe that there are few places making better beer than Manchester, a city with a simply BOOMING beer scene.
I repeat. All of the cask. All of the keg. All of the bottles. All will be sourced from with 25 miles radius of the bar.
Localism in action. Let’s have some applause eh?
The opening beers tonight will include the mighty (and FAR too underrated) Brewsmith IPA on cask. There will be Runaway and Black Jack on keg. There are some stunning local bottles too.
He tells me that he is going to open at 7pm. And even amongst the carnage on that floor last night, I don’t doubt him for a single moment.
The bar is on Bridge Street, just opposite Gaslamp.
Go and say hello. Make the man smile. After his (and his local team’s) HERCULEAN efforts, he deserves that.
I’m in Huddersfield today. I hope he’s still open when I get back. Because I would hate to miss his special night.
Following some last minute hitches, the official opening was put back until today at 4pm. Gareth decided to do a “soft launch”, quietly, among friends and colleagues in the build to give it a test.
As I’m a cheeky git, I finagled my way in, past security, into the “sex dungeon” (ask Gareth!)
And it is looking pretty superb if you were asking….. An incredible transformation from the previous evening.
Beers? Highlights for me were Brewsmith IPA and Runaway’s amazing American Brown. But beers from Black Jack, Brightside, Deeply Vale & Phoenix for starters, with more goodies waiting.
Some great bottles too.
Like I said. Go. I’ll be there at 4 for sure!