A local brewery has today announced the launch of two new brews in support of Manchester’s struggling independent music venues.
Manchester Union Brewery‘s two new brews – a black lager named After Dusk, and Pivot pale ale – have been created in its brewery in Manchester Piccadilly and feature some of the characteristics that make the original Manchester Union Lager so popular.
Both brews are available for delivery right across the UK.
After Dusk – originally brewed as a special for the UK’s biggest lager festival, We Are Lager – is a class Bohemian lager, and favourite of the brewery. As described by Manchester Union Brewery as an “often misunderstood style”, black lager is easily drinkable and massively refreshing, with a complex malt bill that delivers bready and dark fruit flavours with “a classic saaz hop bitterness” recognisable from the brewery’s original lager.
Created in collaboration with some of the city’s top independent music venues, thanks to the breweries connections to the music scene, After Dusk plans to shine a light on, and continue to drive awareness of Manchester’s favourite venues during these testing times.
Each can of After Dusk will show iconic images of venues including the Albert Hall, Hidden, Band on the Wall, Matt & Phred’s and Mint Lounge, with a QR code that can be scanned on a smartphone to take drinkers to the venue’s website.
There they will be able to access live streamed events, gig tickets and radio stations whilst the venues are unable to open.
While the brewery originally planned to focus solely on brewing good lager, due to tank space and the length needed to brew (three times longer than ale), the ongoing Manchester and national lockdown has meant that the business has now needed to pivot and expand its offering.
The second new brew – Pivot – is a take on the classic Manchester Pale Ale, but using central European malt and hops, which a style that became the staple of the region thanks, in part, to the soft water the city enjoys from the Lake District.
A pale ale meets lager, the brewers add pilsner malt to the bill to help keep it crisp whilst blending aromatic, tangerine-like German hallertau mandarina hops with a citrusy British Chinook, to deliver a full flavoured ale.
All the refreshment expected from a lager, jam-packed with the flavour synonymous of a pale ale.
Speaking on the launch of the two new brews, Will Evans – Co-Founder of Manchester Union Brewery – said “We’ve previously made a range of kegged lagers from pilsners to red lagers, black lagers and Oktoberfest lagers, just never in cans, but the addition of the pale ale is an unorthodox step for a lager brewery.
“We always planned to eventually do a wider range of beers, and with Manchester being in lockdown virtually continuously since March, we thought it would be a prudent move to pivot into ale earlier than planned – hence the name.
“We wanted to be able to develop a wider selection of beers for people to enjoy at home over the Christmas period and beyond, now people can buy a box of twelve beers which contains four of each different beer, each with its own unique style.”
Other Co-Founder Jamie Scahill added: “As a brewery we have close connections with the music scene as many of our friends are DJs, play in bands, run club nights and I personally know how hard it’s been as I run my own club night, Funkademia, and music festival, Highest Point.
After Dusk offered a perfect opportunity to support Manchester’s independent music venues during these testing times, and If just one more person clicks a link and buys a ticket then we feel we’ve helped.”
Each new brew will be available in cases of 12 cans for £26.58, or 24 cans for £48.67 from 6pm on 23rd November, and there will also be mixed cases containing original lager, pale ale, and black lager for the same cost.
Prices include delivery to mainland UK, and is expected within 48 hours.
You can find more information and get your hands on the two new brews via the Manchester Union Brewery website here.
Inside the new Simpson’s-themed cafe that has opened in Manchester city centre
A new cafe with food and decor inspired by The Simpson’s has opened in Manchester city centre, and it’s already proving quite the mecca for fans of the satirical American cartoon.
Called Desert Island Dumplings, the new cafe – which sells a range of non-traditional vegan dumplings, salt and pepper chips, hash browns, and naughty noodles – can be found on the top floor of Affleck’s in the Northern Quarter.
Bursting with The Simpson’s memorabilia, the team has really nailed the theme here with a giant chalk blackboard reading: “I will not eat too many dumplings” over and over again.
This continues with retro school desks, a painted ‘blue sky’ ceiling, a Simpson’s scarf, and a Bart-shaped gaming monitor hooked up to an old Play Station and Game Cube (complete with the original Simpson’s Road Rage game and The Sims).
The cafe even boasts a larger-than-life mural of Homer disappearing into a hedge, taken from a 1994 episode of the show where Homer attempts to befriend his neighbour Flanders.
Speaking on the inspiration behind The Simpson’s theme, owner Lucy Linford told The Manc that one day a customer brought in a The Simpson’s scarf and ‘it just grew from there’.
She said: “Some people are a bit confused and I guess it is a bit weird, but it started because I do love The Simpsons and I do watch it a lot.
“The Simpsons thing just, like, evolved. Some guy came to Ancoats with that scarf to give me, and then we had that hanging up, and then it just came bit by bit.
“If anyone asks it’s kind of like, I wanted to open a cafe that I’d go to and I’d want to go to a cafe that had Simpson’s stuff, so I made that happen.”
As well as featured plenty of The Simpson’s memorabilia on its walls, the cafe also boasts a host of Simpsons-inspired dishes.
On its menu, you’ll find the likes of non-traditional dumplings in flavours like cheeseburger, salt and pepper chick’n and overnight blueberry oat, alongside the likes of drunken noodles, salt and pepper chips and salt and pepper hash browns.
There are a bunch of Simpson’s-themed menu items, ranging from steamed hams to an array of combo boxes inspired by different characters in the show including ‘The Lisa’s Lunch Special’. ‘The Homer’s home Early Mega Box’, ‘The It’s All Coming Up Millhouse Special’ and ‘The moe Syzslak Mystery Mega Box.’
As for drinks, these are limited to soft drinks with favourites like Ribena and Coke available alongside delicious Columbian filter coffee, various teas and mugs of hot chocolate.
Walkers is opening a string of crisp butty cafes across the UK￼
We all love a crisp butty here in the UK. Or, at least 98% of us do, according to research conducted by Walkers.
There’s simply no denying how those crunchy slices of potato – be they deep-fried, air-fried or baked – add a lift to even the most humdrum sarnie.
So when we heard the news that Walkers is opening a host of crisp butty cafes across the UK we were pretty gassed, to say the least.
Locations are yet to be confirmed, with each shop set to run a unique menu of crisp-filled sandwiches alongside their own regionally-inspired offerings, reportsThe Hoot.
Loaded up with the likes of Quavers, Wotsits and Monster Munch, the new UK cafes will serve up the very best crunchy sandwiches created in collaboration with Max Halley, the guru behind the famous London sandwich shop Max’s.
Whilst most of the sandwich combinations are still being kept under wraps, we have heard talk of a fish finger Monster Munch hybrid with added chipotle mayo, Pic De Gallo and cabbage on focaccia, aka the ‘‘Might Monster Muncher’.
The decision to open the new UK crisp sandwich shops is inspired by Walker’s own research after the company discovered a whopping 98% of adults strongly believe that crisps make their sandwiches better.
Philippa Pennington at Walkers said: “Last year the residents of Sandwich voted “Crisp In” as the winning combination, but this year we’re widening the debate to showcase the wide range of crisp and sandwich combinations – from classic Walkers crisps through to Wotsits and Monster Munch.
“With Walkers Sandwich Shops located across the UK, we’re calling on people to head to their nearest shop, taste the sandwiches and have their say online by sharing their favourite combination from the menu, or favourite crisps to enjoy in a sandwich.”