Steel City 47 – Talks, tours & tastings

For the first time, events at the forthcoming Sheffield Steel City Beer Festival will include a guided
historical walk: Sheffield’s Little Chicago Quarter in 1925. This will explore streets that feature in the leader’s book ‘Sheffield 1925: Gang Wars and Wembley Glory,’ with a narrative explaining how Sheffield briefly became the most turbulent city in Britain because of an escalating gang war
involving the Park Brigade, Mooney Gang, the Gas Tank Gang and many others.

The short walk will explore the social and Industrial heritage of the area, examining the myths and reality of a tumultuous year in Sheffield history, before finishing at the Beer Festival.

Dave Pickersgill, editor of ‘Sheffield’s Real Heritage Pubs,’ will provide an illustrated presentation
while, the three tastings: ‘Bridging the Gap between Beer and Cider,’ ‘Cask is Craft?‘ and ‘From
Europe to Mars,’ will, between them, cover a wide spectrum of the 21 st century UK beer scene.

Mike Pomranz (Old Shoe) will compare two beers and two ciders: two ‘single variety’ and two of a
‘funkier’ description before sampling the single box of a 2023 mixed-variety Sheffield grown and
made cider from his Exemption Ciderhouse. Mike successfully delivered a similar, more cider-
focussed event, at the recent national Members’ Weekend.

Julia Gray will introduce four contrasting beers: two cask (gravity and hand-pull), one key-keg and one from a small pack. An experienced beer trade professional with almost twenty years in the field, she aims to showcase, “the variety and quality of beer currently available in the UK.”
Jules owns a local independent award-winning beer shop and tasting room, Hop Hideout (established 2013). In 2015 she set-up a city-wide beer celebration in her hometown: Sheffield Beer Week. In 2018, this was followed by a new craft beer festival: Indie Beer Feast, now an annual event.

Dann Paquette and Martha Holley from local brewery, Saint Mars of the Desert (SMOD), will
introduce two European favourites and the beers which they have inspired. SMOD draw their
brewing inspiration from many sources, from traditional 19 th century recipes to the bright, vibrantly hoppy beers of New England. Their greatest influence is possibly the Belgian monastic style. As Martha put it, “this is an ideal opportunity for us to look back to our key influences, the Belgian and German beers which inspired us to produce such classics as Clamp and Jack D’Or.”
After seven successful years managing the ‘Pretty Things Beer and Ale Project,’ in Boston,
Massachusetts, Dann and Martha spent two years travelling. In 2018, they relocated to the best beer city in the world. On RateBeer, they were quickly named as amongst the top ten new breweries world-wide. Their brewery and taproom is hidden behind old industrial units in a currently unfashionable part of the city.

The 47th Sheffield Steel City Beer Festival will be held at Kelham Island Museum: 18-21 October 2023. Advance tickets for all events are available:

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