Heading from Nomadic towards Meanwood passes Ridgeside, a brewery now approaching its first decade, having developed from quality casks to embrace the craft beer movement. Continuing into the revitalised suburb is to visit relative newcomer Meanwood Brewery and their taproom Terminus, plus The Hungry Bear, a restaurant where upstairs their awesome own brew is produced. These and other fine Yorkshire ales are all handsomely served at the nearby pub trio of Alfred’s, Boot & Rally, and East of Arcadia.
Other areas of Leeds, too, have quality breweries named after them. Kirkstall is a well known favourite, with its Pale Ale pouring all around the city and other brews such as Dissolution in their own locals, Kirkstall Bridge and Cardigan Arms. Ilkley also spreads its liquid far and wide, with a successful core range, from Mary Jane to Gregory Breakfast Porter. And on a smaller scale that’s no less delicious, Horsforth have moved from one man in his garage to a purpose brewery and occasional taproom.
Similarly tiny operations are growing all around Leeds, packing flavour and character into blondes, stouts, and all else between. Sunbeam have been winning awards for its US and NZ influenced ales such as Born In LS11, which are enjoyed in the likes of Whitelock’s and Wapentake, despite being only a one man home brewer. Wilde Child also came from an individual’s brewing obsession whose terrifically unique beers have moved out of his garage and into Leeds pubs like The Brunswick and Head of Steam.
Remarkably, there are many more brewers across all corners of Leeds, and of course plenty of others, from start ups to well knowns, all over Yorkshire, with current attention to Hebden Bridge’s Vocation Brewery, who are running the bar at the new Leeds pub with the most craft beers, Assembly Underground. To try much of this at home, there are no shortage of stocking bottle shops. Whilst Tall Boys sadly closed, the centre remains catered for by Little Leeds Beerhouse in the Corn Exchange. In Headingley, Beer Ritz has long since led the craft beer retail game, and has been recently joined in the area by Growler’s. Horsforth has The Hop Shack, Armley’s Raynville Superstore is something else, and in Otley and Ilkley there’s The Curious Hop and Fuggle & Golding respectively. Chapel Allerton has just got lucky too with Caspar’s Bottle Shop.
It’s everywhere! Wherever you look in Leeds, there’s something brewing…..