#ISBF5 : Thursday 29th November to 1st December - So Here We Are


These things take time. And frequently (as Rabbie Burns is famously quoted as saying) “The best laid plans o mice an men aft gang agley. And oh BOY do they go agley!

From deciding/desiring to “go again” to getting here has taken about 8 months and it has certainly been an interesting journey – to put it mildly.

We’re almost at the stage where I hand this monster over, but for now, I’ll talk in the 1st person. This is me. Jim.

Once we’d secured Hemsley House (and I can’t WAIT for you to see it!) I wanted this to be a bit different. It had to be different. More space. More people = more beer. Over 25% more beer.

But we’ll come to that later.


It’s truly humbling to see and feel all the love for this event. It kind of means that we’ve got it to where we/I always wanted it to be. Good beer, good people and good music. All coming together. The three things that I care about most. Despite the new surroundings, this isn’t a fancy bash. It Isn’t – nor will it ever become – “up itself”. That would be most “un Northern”. And I/we are products of this environment, these twin cities of Salford & Manchester. And we don’t take ourselves too seriously up here.

And we love where we’re from. It’s in our blood. All of us involved. This wee family that comes together each year. I love these people.

So. Enough mawkishness. What’s going to happen next week.


Well. We open on Thursday 29th at 6pm for a start. That’s a quiet one. And all about the beer. With a little background music in the Rink Suite (#EvilKegFilth room). The cask room (Worsley Suite) will remain free of tunes. As will The Walker Suite (aka The Green Room)

Friday lunchtime the same. 11:30 opening. Good beer, good tunes. Same format.

Friday evening, will see Zacc Rogers play two sets in The Rink Suite. Go have a watch /listen on You Tube. He’s bloody good! Sets probably 7:30 & 8:30 ish. But that’s up to the artists! We’ll also have a presentation from Ryan of new Preston brewery Chain House. We’re proud to give them their first Mancunia exposure and I’m sure we’ll see a lot more of their beers in the coming year.

Saturday Lunch will see 2 presentations/chats.

Firstly – at approx 12:45 – Former National Champion Home Brewer, Andy Parker, he now of Elusive Brewing, will be talking matters Home Brewing. Man knows his stuff.

Shortly afterwards we will have an MTB style thing with exciting new Yorkshire venture SALT Brewing (They’ve got theprettiest of set ups!)

All meetings will be in The Walker Suite.

Saturday evening, live music again with the ace voice of Elly Grice and the Guitar Merlin that is George Fell (anyone who watched him last year, knows)


The beers will be at a range of prices generally (with certain limited exceptions) in the following price ranges…

Cask :

Up to 3.5% - £3 a pint

3.6 – 4.5 £3.30

4.6 – 5.5 £3.60

5.6 – 6.0 £3.90

6.0 – 6.9 £4.20

7.0 – 7.9 £4.80

8.0 – 8.9 £5.10

9.0 – 9.9 £5.40

10 and above £6.00

Beers 7% and above only served in ½ Pt and 1/3 Pt measures. With some exclusively in 1/3 Pt measures.


3.0 – 3.9 £3.90

4.0 – 4.9 £4.50

5.0 - 5.9 £5.10

6.0 - 6.9 £5.70

7.0 - 7.9 £6.30

8.0 - 8.9 £6.90

9.0 – 9.9 £7.50

10 & above £9.00

Again, Beers 7% and above only served in ½ Pt and 1/3 Pt measures. With some exclusively in 1/3 Pt measures.

These aren’t “rip off” prices. I don’t do that. And please remember, ALL profits go to charity.

The prettiest beer festival T-shirts ever will be on sale at £17.50 in grey and red. They’re gorgeous. And I thank my Design Genius, webmaster and all round good (H)egg Andy for the beautiful look.

The food – once again – will be of the wholesome type. Think hotpots / Chillis etc.


Big thanks to the following – without whom this wouldn’t be happening….

Team Black Jack. Without whom the beer wouldn’t be here. Utter stars

Malcolm Bastow of Five Towns. Ditto for Yorkshire. And for other reasons only he knows and I’m not telling.

Lee & Sam at All Flow Dispense. 5 years of installing bars in the face of my chaos. Cheers fellas.

Dave & Jen at The Northern Type – For sponsoring our glassware.

Bailey & Jules at GRUB – for so much. And the sound system!

OK. What you really want to see is what’s below. So. Fill your boots. It’s taken 8 months to get this lot together, with lots of changes since the initial brewery list was published. Hope you enjoy it.

Please NB. The aim is to source beers new to Manchester. This isn’t ALWAYS possible. Some can and DO slip through the net, for certain I’m no Untappd or Ratebeer hound – as anybody who knows me knows all too well. But it IS the aim. To give you 94 beers new to the area. And it’d bloody hard work.

So don’t shoot me if I’ve missed one or two!

Read responsibly.

See you next week.

Jim & The ISBF Family


Brewery                               Beer                                                                      Style                      ABV

Abbeydale                          Raspberry and peanut butter BA               Imperial Stout   10

Bad Seed                            Super Sobremesa (Coffee & Almond)      Stout                     8.5

Beatnikz                              I Session San Diego                                          Session Pale     4.2

Beer Nouveau                   Tarragon The Dragon                                      Stout                     8.4

Black Jack                           Deck of Cards                                                     US Brown Ale     5.6

Blackedge                           Nelson Sauvin                                                    Session Pale       3.8

Blue Bee                              Archimedes Principle                                      Pale Ale                4.2

Brass Castle                        Funkshine                                                           Bretted IPA         5.7

Brew York                           Amber Gambler (Wood cask aged)           US Amber            4.7

Cheshire Brewhouse      Crush Collision                                                   Session Pale       4

De Ranke                            XX Bitter                                                              Belgian Blond     6

Distant Hills                        White Peach Milkshake                                 Session IPA         4.2

Elusive x North Riding     Mochachino                                                       US Red Ale          5.8

Five Towns                         Candidate                                                           Breakfast Stout 9

Five Towns                         Sweet Thing                                                       Melon Pale         5.5

Five Towns x Rivington   Sweet Thing (Reprise)                                    Imperial Fruited

Milkshake IPA    9

Neptune                             Atlantic Ridge                                                    US Brown Ale     5.5

Night Jar                            Turbo Tuk Tuk                                                   Thai IPA               5.2

North Riding x Elusive     India Porter                                                        Porter                   6.7

Pictish                                Caradoc's Thirst                                                Table Beer          2.9

Pomona Island                  Best Ever Death Metal

Band Out of Salford                                         Mandarin Pale   5.5

Rammy Craft                      Little Wonder                                                    Session Pale       3.6

Redwillow                          Tearless v4 (Cryo Hop)                                   Table Beer        3

Revolutions                        Phantasmagoria                                               Oatmeal Pumpkin

Brown Ale 4.5 

Runaway x GRUB             Pineapple Upside Down Cake                     Cake!                    5.5

SALT Brewing                   Jute                                                                      Session IPA         4

Thirst Class                       Dandelion & Burdock Pale                            Special Pale        4.8

Tigertops                          Honey Bear Honey Pale

(Orval Yeast)      4

Torrside v Runaway        Social Distortion                                               Pale Ale            5.6

Turning Point                   Yellow Matter Custard                                   Vanilla Wheat

Pale                     6

Vocation                          Imperial Russian Stout                                   Imperial Stout   10.6

Wigan Brewhouse           All American 5 Hop                                          Session Ale         4

Wilde Child                         Enfant Terrible                                                  Milkshake

Table Pale           3.1

Wishbone                            The Black Imp                                                    Imperial Stout    8.7




Brewery                               Beer                                      Style                                      ABV

6th Day Brewing               Land of Make Believe     Mandarin Champale       5.50

8 Arch                                  Dainty                                   NE Pale                                 4.80

Abbeydale                          Table Bretted Saison       Dry Hopped Saison          3.60

Almasty                               Dank                                     NE IPA                                  6.00

Ampersand                        Lemon Voyage                  Lemon Verbena

Brut IPA                               6.00

Beer Ink                              Maude The Merrier         Canadian Breakfast

Stout                                     8.80

Bexar County                     Thin Line Between           Green Tea, Mango and

Genius & Insanity II         Sriracha Pale                      6.60

Bexar County (c)               Getting The Band Back

Together                             Mini Porter                         3.10

Big Fish Brew Co               Division 1                             NEIPA                                  6.70

Black Lodge                      Origami Unicorn               DDH Pale                             5.00

Bone Machine                   Día de Muertos                 Mexican Stout                   7.40

Boutillers                           Jam Sandwich Pale          Pale Ale                                4.60

Brew By Numbers            tbc                                          Cranberry Wit                    5.50

Brick                                   Blackcurrant & Sumac    Sour                                     3.60

Buxton                                Cherry Sour                        Fruited Berliner Weisse 3.50

Chain House Brew Co     Shorts in October             Hazy Pale Ale                     5.00

Cloudwater                        "Cherry and Sea Salt"      Imperial Stout                   11.00

Cwrw Ial                              Lager                                     Lager                                    5.00

Double Barreled               Raspberry & Beetroot    Gose                                    5.00

Elusive                                 Bless The Rains                  Coffee Hazelnut Porter       7.00

Elusive x North Riding     India Porter                        Porter                                   6.70

Fierce                                  6pm Sinner                         Amber DIPA W/Lime       8.50

Hawkshead                         Autumn Equinox              Blackberry Sour                3.30

Kernel                                 Dry Stout Centennial      Stout                                    4.40

Korupted Brew Co            Beaucoup de Baies

Fourrees                              Saison                                  5.80

LHG                                    Otherlands                         Cascadian Black                 6.60

Liquid Light                        Electric Machine               IPA                                      6.50

Little Earth                         Dandelion de Garde                                                        8.40

Loka Polly                          Chinook / Mosaic (ONLY KEG!)DIPA                                  8.60

Lost & Grounded              Take Me To The Top        IPA                                   6.80

Macc Brew Co                   We All Hail Hail                  Yuzu & Sorachi Pale         5.00

Magic Rock                         Dairyfreak (Hazelnut)     Milk Ice Porter                  5.20

Mallinsons                          Lager                                     Lager                                5.00

Marble                                Decadence 2018               Imperial Stout                   10.50

Marble x

Wander Beyond               Found Your Marbles       Fruit Blended Impy          11.00

Mills                                    Picture Pot                          Blended Sour                   6.30

Neon Raptor                      Endangered                       Oak Bourbon

Vanilla Porter                   6.60

Neptune x Tom's Tap      Farmhouse IPA                 Farmhouse IPA                 7.20

Northern Alchemy           Cola Sour                             Sour                                  4.00

Northern Monk                tbc                                          DIPA                                  9.00

Pilot                                   Brut IPA Brut IPA                            6.00

Rivington                          Stock Ale                             Stock Ale                          7.70

Runaway (c)                     Coffee & Chocolate         White Stout                       6.50

Six Degrees North            Snowy                                  Belgian Winter ale           7.50

Squawk                             Fusca                                     Chocolate Vanilla Stout 9.00

Staggeringly Good          Ekuanodon                         Vermont DIPA                 7.40

Thirst Class x

 Tickety Brew                  Plum & Licorice Stout     Stout                                6.20

Thornbridge                   Mint Choc Chip Lucaria  Ice Cream Porter            4.50

Three Blind Mice            Bretted Gooseberry       Saison                              5.20

Tom's Tap                       Imperial Brown

Breakfast Stout                 Imperial Brown Stout     6.00

Torrside                         Destination Unknown    Double Ruby IPA             9.50

Track                               Hedgerow Sour

(collab w/Garage Brewing)            Sour                                5.50

Twisted Barrel                Behold A Pale Horse       DH Belgian Tripel           9.00

Verdant                          #6                                           DIPA                               8.00

Vibrant Forest               Luciferin                               Black Imperial Lime

Gose                               7.40

Watts & Co                   Paddington Pale Ale        Lime Marmalade Pale     4.30

Weird Beard                 JD Barrel Aged Sadako   Imperial Stout                9.50

Wild Weather               Strawberry Daiquiri         Pale                                5.00

Wilderness                   Equinox Saison                  Mixed Culture Saison                                                                  (Burgundy BA Blended with fresh Saison)              5.20

Wylam                         Pigs Ear - Art & Beer       Pale Ale                          5.00


Please note. There WILL be a small, select & local Gin Bar and there WILL be ciders. I just don’t know quite what yet!

Some of those beasties are UNIQUE to us. Some you may never see in Manchester again. All (or near as) will be new to Manchester.

And they’re all for you. Enjoy.

See you next week!