Bath Road Boom

Bath Road Beers

What a result. Bath Road Beers in Cheltenham has only gone and won the Independent Beer Retailer of the Year award!

Fuelled on the joys of a local high-end beer shop opening on my doorstep back in 2018, it was only fitting to share this with the local community: https://www.gloucestershirelive.co.uk/whats-on/whats-on-news/seven-secret-gloucestershire-spots-you-1833420

Andrew and Will took the business from strength to strength, extending their range of outstanding beers and building the community they dreamed of; running club, home brewing society, games club, guest speakers and special events galore.

Well done guys and may you continue to serve your clientele with such heady enthusiasm.

Bath Road Beers award

Inside Bath Road Beers

SandBar Tenby

Down an alley on Upper Frog Street, neatly tucked away in what reminds me of a trendy converted London mews, is the home of the Tenby Brewing Company and their relaxed, rather funky little SandBar.

This very pleasing oasis away from the buckets and spades of the town only serves products from independent producers – craft beer and spirits from across Wales and the UK. Good on you lads!

Keg beers

It’s really promising to see new ventures like this appearing in the harbour town of Tenby. The combination of quality craft beers and classic streetfood-styled cuisine has been an astronomical success on the East Coast of America, and I see the scene having an equally meteoric growth in the UK as well.

No fuss, reasonably-priced fare that hits the spot with big flavours, and puts a smile all over your face and cheese in your lap. (Hashtag: Please eat responsibly).. I’m on holiday, it’s allowed.

“We’re going to need a bigger boat…”

The Awesome Footlong

Fear not vegetarians, their ever-improving kitchen caters for you too – surprisingly delicious Katsu curry that rivals Wagamama on flavour and texture, flows effortlessly from the kitchen.

Sandbar Tenby Katsu Curry

The highlight for me? Flights. Probably the most generous beer sampling flights I’ve ever seen (please, please don’t change that!) Choose any 3 of their keg beers in ½ pint measures for just £5. As these are mostly punchy craft IPAs, the measures are perfect for sampling and sharing. Love what you’ve sampled; the bar has it’s own shop as well…

paddles

Yes, you still need a beer menu or at least tasting notes for your great range of beers guys, but you certainly get ‘two thumbs good’ from me.

More details at: http://www.tenbybrewingco.com

Stunning art at Sandbar

Breaking The Law

Jailbreak.  If you like beer and you’re anywhere near Baltimore or Washington, you should pay these guys a visit. So let’s set the scene. Nestled in Laurel and founded by Kasey Turner and Justin Bonner, Jailbreak is a relaxed, inviting and generally cool little bar. Actually, it’s rather spacious.  Most importantly, it’s an awesome microbrewery producing knock-out beers. Jailbreak Laurel

I love the fact that the bar looks straight into the brewery through a huge glass wall. This place is clean, calculated and professional, yet laid back and unpretentious.

Now here’s something I found interesting: craft beers in the US are predominantly canned. Their cans are lined, keeping the beer in great condition and preventing the metallic, ‘tinny’ taste provided you drink it from a glass. Cans have a bad reputation in the UK, with consumers associating them with lower quality and ‘park-bench-drinkers’. It’s cheaper than buying beer in bottles, and without venturing into the BPA debate here, I’d say that I’m all for switching; surely it makes sense for everyone? The positives really do stack up – the beer stays fresher, as unlike bottles the cans prevent light getting to it. Shipping and environmental costs are reduced, as cans are much lighter and less bulky – we all know that cans are easier to carry… I’ve smashed plenty of bottles en-route to picnics and parties; so much safer on camping trips. Impatient? The thermodynamic properties mean your beer will chill quicker in the fridge/ice bucket.

Jailbreak Brewing Co. beer

Jailbreak’s beers are quirky and exciting. For me, it was all about the Dusk till Dawn, an imperial espresso stout packing a 10.6% punch in the face. Key Lime Pale Ale anyone? What about a basil infused Belgian style wheat beer: ‘Made Wit Basil’? Clever. Check out jailbreakbrewing.com for further info.

Right.  So this is where it gets really interesting. Jailbreak stood out for me as their bar supports local food trucks. Now, in the UK, most people would turn their noses up at this point and conjure up images of dirty burger vans and the smell of fried onions. Think again. We’re talking the real deal. Jailbreak advertises which trucks are going to be parked up outside the front door each day, and even more astonishingly awesome, you place your order and they give you a pager to let you know when to pop outside and collect it. I’ve never known a pub to allow you to bring your dinner in and eat it at the bar.

Food TruckT&J Waffles fayreNaughty Chicken Waffles

As T & J Waffles had the prime spot, we went for Chicken Waffles (When in Rome…) and sampled the salmon for good measure. Good with beer? – how couldn’t it be.

To top off this visit, we got an impromptu brewery tour. I kid you not. Could this night get any better?

Touring Jailbreak Brewing Company

You Sir, are a Legend.

view of the bar from the brewery

A privileged view of Jailbreak Brewing Co. Bar

Did we hit a few beers and pick up a few more from the fridge to keep us going?  You betcha.

6-pack of Big Punisher

Funky carrier, but I’m sure our flimsy translucent ones must be better for the environment..? Discuss.

Keep up the good work Jailbreak – I can’t wait to be back in town.