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Try brand new beers at Norwich’s Beer Mash Up this summer

PUBLISHED: 10:20 24 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:41 24 July 2018

Get together with friends for the Beer Mash Up in Norwich  Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Get together with friends for the Beer Mash Up in Norwich Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

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Event, part of Norwich Craft Beer Week, is ‘ramped up’ for 2018.

If beers made with unusual hops, exquisite malts and whacky inclusions float your boat, pencil the week starting August 27 in your diary – the beginning of Norwich Craft Beer Week.

The event, started last year by mates Craig Cuttings and Jake Thorogood, is dedicated to showing off the diversity of brews available in the city, and in 2018 is enhanced by the addition of a huge Beer Mash Up from August 24 to 26 in St Laurence Church on St Benedicts Street.

“We had a similar thing to the mash up last year,” says Craig. “We took six breweries to Harper Wells in Barr Street and it was fairly low-key but everyone enjoyed meeting the brewers and they were pouring the beers, telling the stories behind them. We saw on the night there was something in it so we’ve decided to ramp it up this year and do it over three days.”

The Mash Up’s USP, Craig says, is every pint is poured by the brewery that made it, not a volunteer. “That’s a real point of difference, we’re really looking forward to it.”

Set in the new, much bigger location of St Laurence church, the Mash Up’s nice and central and, say the organisers, very cool (important in these hot days we’re having) with a unique atmosphere.

So far 10 breweries have signed on the dotted line, with another potentially coming on board. “We’ve only got two from outside of Norfolk and they themselves have Norwich links,” says Craig, “so the breweries are mostly from Norwich. We try to keep it very local to celebrate what we have here, which is what craft beer week was about originally.

“Everyone involved was asked to create something new or do a collaboration, so each brewery is bringing something not seen before to the Mash-Up which is really positive for us.”

On the list are Ampersand, who’ve helped with the organisation of the event, having launched last year.

All Day Brewing bring their farmhouse brewing style, using wild yeasts.

And Grain, are showing off their more traditional cask beers which is great, says Craig, in what is a “cask-led city”.

“Outside of Norwich we have One Mile End from London. Their head brewer is from Norwich and that’s nationally recognised as a good brewery. And we’ve got a couple of guys from Peterborough/Cambridge way, plus Three Blind Mice from Ely who do some really really good beers.

“We’ve really tried to tick all the boxes as well as we could.”

New this year too is the addition of street food, with a few local vendors attending to whet your appetite (as yet to be confirmed).

“We both have normal day jobs,” adds Craig, “but we’re big beer fans and home brewers as well. This is a way for us to use our existing skills doing something that’s a bit of a departure from the day job. It’s a bit of fun and we’ve met some really cool people along the way!”

Go to norwichcraftbeerweek.co.uk to book your tickets.

Craig’s top three local craft beers

1. We have seen All Day Brewing creeping under the radar doing some really really good beers. We recently had their Elderflower Pale Ale which we really enjoyed.

2. Ampersand’s New England IPA is beautiful. It took a lot to get it right but it’s quite a trendy beer at the moment – he’s nailed it.

3. Three Blind Mice just produced a Pineapple Double Dry Hopped IPA which is brilliant. It’s probably my favourite beer I’ve had this year. It’s great for summer.

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