The Chappel Winter Beer Festival is now in it’s sixth year, running on a Fri/Sat at the end of February.
We booked in to the Friday afternoon session this year, having been to evening sessions previously – read our short reports on trips to the second and the first of these festivals.
We were lucky with the weather, yesterday seeing blue skies, sunshine and just a little cloud, although it was a bit nippy in the open air. The East Anglian Railway Museum, host to the festival, has come on in leaps and bounds in recent years (we’ve been coming to the summer beer festivals here for 25 years!). There’s now a proper little shop/museum, many more displays, and a row of little faux shops.
So, plenty to look at whilst drinking, and there was hot food (cheeseburger with bacon recommended), and plenty of choice in terms of beer. You can pick up the full beer list from this, and previous festivals, at the Chappel Winter Beer Festival website.
Beerwise, first up was a Moonshine Brewery ‘Hot Numbers Coffee Stout’, which was quite moreish, although fairly easy on the coffee. The Colchester Brewery ‘Old King Coel’ porter was in good form, the quarter of a mile trip from the brewery not spoiling it! Bartrams Brewery ‘Black Forest Porter’ had a sweet gateaux vibe to it – I wouldn’t want pints of it, but a nice half.
The Milestone ‘Black Galleon’ was in fact somewhat brown, and paled a little in comparison to the other stouts/porters, whereeas the Panther Brewery ‘Black’ lived up to it’s name.
To finish off, I had a snifter of Dominion Brewery 12% ‘Pitfield Double Wheat Stout’ which was so complex it made my head hurt. It looked like a normal stout, but it laughed in the face of Imperial Russian stouts.
Here are some pix :