Off The Beaten Track

So what is “Off The Beaten Track” all about, well its a 3 pub beer festival held on 1st to 4th September.

Which pubs : Hillsborough HotelGardeners RestThe Forrest

With 60 beers to choose from.

So I thought this has to be done and started on Thursday night doing all 3 pubs drinking 3 halves in each, after all it was a school night and didnt want to go over the top. The next stretch for me was the Saturday which wasnt the best day to choose as it rained most of the day but thankfully I had my waterproof coat with me and I really needed it as the rain didnt stop for most of the day.

Gardeners Rest

I do like this pub and I decided to sit next to Stella, now she is one scary person, who by the way, isnt real but if she moved I would have freaked out. This pub did produce a very nice beer list with info on the back about the breweries featured and also when the year they started. Front page had a map of the pubs and also Peddlers Market and Sheffield Brewery.

The ales i tried were :

  • Atlantic – Earl grey PA
  • Eight Arch – Parabolic
  • Firebrand – Breakout IPA
  • Granite Rock – Glasney College Porter
  • ISCA – American Rye
  • Rebel – Pacific Gem
  • Tapstone – Cascade
  • Wessex 0 Ultra Pale Ale

The advantage this pub had for the Saturday was a coat rack to hang my wet waterproofs up.

They also had the full beer list on a giant sheet of paper on the wall and I wanted to try the Beer Ink ales but they ran out before I could get to them.




Hillsborough Hotel

This pub is on the tram route for me and a pub I have come to like and visit when I can, the ale list was either on a board as some ales were in the cellar and the rest were on the pumps, I wanted to try the Vale of Glamorgan ales but they had all gone, but I was happy with Wantsum Brewery.

This is a pub I am going to have to try the food as it looked very nice, the bar staff are also very friendly and as usual the weather was the topic.

There was no printed list on Thursday so on my Saturday visit I put all the ales in my pad, when i got there on Saturday a list was available.

Ales I tried were:

  • Wantsum Brewery – 1381, Black Pig, Clerics Consolation, Raddle Bitter
  • Nethergate Brewery – Lemon Head
  • Brew York Brewery – Brew York Brew York
  • Hop Craft Pixiesspring Brewery – Golden Pixie


The Forrest and Toolmakers Brewery

This pub was a short walk from Gardeners rest and this is where the confusion started, I went into the pub and saw only the bar pumps on, no sign of a 3 pub beer festival, so I had one of the pump ales which was on this list, so when I had that one I asked for another on the list and this is when they said the rest were in the Toolmakers Brewery which is round the corner, so off I went to the brewery.

I had never been in here before and was pleasantly surprised with loads of pumps and all the ales I wanted. There was no beer list at all so I used my notepad to write them all down.

The ones I had were:

  • Atlantic – Masala Chai
  • Cornish Crown – Porter
  • Holsworthy – Boom
  • ISCA – American Brown
  • Sunny Republic – Shark Head
  • Toolmakers – Micrometer

Not sure if this is open to the public during the week/weekend but will be a nice place if it was, even for events.



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Despite the awful weather on Saturday i did have a good time trying new ales I not had before, my Untppd was a bit busy.



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