Do you know your Bramling Cross from your Fuggles? Are you aware of the difference between a crystal or a chocolate malt? Any idea what burtonisation is? If not, pay attention; you just might learn something.
York Brewery, on Toft Green, has been brewing beer for your drinking pleasure since 1996, and provides residents and tourists alike with the first real ales produced within the city walls for forty years. Their award-winning draughts, Centurion’s Ghost, Guzzler, and Yorkshire Terrier can be found not only at the headquarters, but also at three sister pubs, which you will no doubt recognise from your travels around York. These are The Three Legged Mare, High Petergate, The Last Drop Inn, Kings Square, and The Yorkshire Terrier, Stonegate. In each of these establishments you’ll find good service, a friendly welcome, and informed knowledge on the drinks and the craft they ply.
The brewery also offers tours of the facility, and the opportunity to experience brewing using all of the senses. Twenty barrel fermenters and five conditioning tanks contribute to the tireless work that goes into producing one pint of your favourite ale. There is a gallery that has been constructed above the brewhouse, providing visitors with a tantalising insight into every step of the process. Here, they can witness the handcrafted real ales being produced using traditional methods to ensure the absolute highest quality.
Another local brewery is Rudgate Brewery, located in Tockwith, responsible for even more ales that you might recognise. Battle Axe, perhaps? Jorvik Blonde? Maybe you’ve heard of Ruby Mild? These and many other ales can be found in a number of the 200 plus pubs (there was once one pub for every day of the year in York, but hard times have put paid to that) in the city.
Rudgate Brewery was founded in 1992, and has been independently brewing traditionally crafted ales using the fortuitously pliant Yorkshire mains water ever since. The internationally sourced hops (England, USA, New Zealand and Germany, to name but a few), and twenty barrel brew plant produce a hundred barrels per week. The brewery are also to thank for the recent inclusion to their already rich repertoire, York Chocolate Stout.
With so many locally produced ales to choose from, there is no excuse to not sample at least one of them in the near future; and with two more bank holidays on the horizon, you’ll have plenty of time to try them too.