Sheffield Food Festival

4 July 2011 - 10 July 2011

Sheffield Food Festival mapWith a star brewing cast list that includes the likes of Kelham Island and Thornbridge Brewery, it was perhaps inevitable that Sheffield’s Food Festival would embrace the ale with verve and vigour.

It didn’t take long – only in its second year and the Festival is laying on brewery tours, ale trails, events – including an appearance from the effervescent Beer Beauty herself, Marverine Cole – plus a Beer Festival in the Peace Gardens over the weekend.

Local history enthusiast Ron Clayton kicks off events with a talk on Sheffield’s most famous pubs, ancient and modern, in the comfort of one of its finest, the Hillsborough Hotel on Mon 4 July. This is followed – of course – by a chance to taste the beers from the Hillsborough Hotel’s own Crown Brewery.

Beer Beauty takes over the Greystones Pub on 5 July for a ladies event, offering a chance to taste fab brews, gossip and schmooze with the brewers themselves. I went to one of Marverine’s “do’s” a few months ago – they are unmissable.

Thornbridge - Caolan While Thornbridge Brewery is offering afternoon tours on 6 July – your chance to see how Caolan Vaughan, pictured, manages to keep this multi-award-winning business on track – Kelham Island is waiting until the evening of 7 July to open its doors.

And if you fancy making your own way around some pubs of note, two of the trails created by CAMRA are based around public transport – sound idea! I like the notion of the Supertram one – it includes the Hillsborough Hotel, Kelham Island Tavern, The Fat Cat and others. Now that's a route I'd like to master.

For festival details, see Sheffield Food Festival's rather wonderful website
For details on the Real Ale Marquee and the Real Ale Trails, visit Sheffield CAMRA's site.