It is early March and SIBA BeerX is about to roll back into Liverpool in the middle of this month (Wednesday 16th - Thursday 17th March to be precise) for another instalment of its annual trade show.
For those attending the show, hopefully there will be enough of them to enjoy a trip around Liverpool’s city centre and perhaps further outward to investigate some of the great pubs and bars that are located nearby. Let’s be totally honest; there are a lot of them (RIGHT HERE).
So given the opportunity to investigate and have a bit of an adventure around the area once the trade sessions have reached a conclusion at the end of each day, we thought we would provide some inspiration for people to consider when exploring places to find a great beer in Liverpool.
Dale Street Area
Not too far from the Mersey, Dale Street has a host of pubs and bars that pour some excellent beer; from the famous Ship and Mitre (with a great mix of traditional and modern cask beers, along with some own brewed gear, continental brews and kegged craft beer), to the Excelsior almost immediately next door (again, a solid cask line up), to a saunter (carefully) across Dale Street to the award winning Dead Crafty Beer Company, whose 20 lines of modern craft from across the UK, Europe and the US is nothing short of remarkable.
The Angus is a more recent venue, hosting lots of live music but also some great beers on both cask and keg. A little closer to the water are The Lady of Mann, Thomas Rigby’s, the Vernon Arms and Ye Hole in the Wall, all stocking a solid cask line up (usually more traditional styled for the latter two) with the former two stocking some craft keg and some interesting small package beer in the fridges. Round the corner from these is the Lion Tavern, another award winning pub with a good traditional range of cask ales.
A more recent addition to the area (during the pandemic) is the refurbished Denbigh Castle, set up as a sister pub to the Bridewell and it stocks a fine range of traditional and modern cask, with continental lagers and some craft keg. Finally, for a slice of local history mixed with a decent serving of cask beer, Dr Duncan’s is also located nearby; a beautiful and ornate building with a rich history and a lovely open fire in a mosaic tiled lounge.
The Baltic Area and Dockside
Another area of the city which is filled with interesting places to eat and drink, with the old and new juxtaposed. Here you can find Turncoat Bar on the Albert Dock, hosting a Kernel Brewery Takeover during BeerX, serving craft keg beers, great pizzas and cocktails if you need a change of pace. You can also see the Pumphouse, which looks out towards the Mersey and Irish sea and has started to display a very interesting line up of cask ales.
Across Wapping from the arena, the Baltic Fleet, an erstwhile brewpub with a deep tapestry of maritime influence in the city, hosts a range of cask and continental beers. There are brewery taprooms located in this area too, with both Love Lane and Black Lodge Brewing located nearby. Love Lane will certainly be open and serving an array of cask and keg, as well as having a busy kitchen ready to provide other sustenance.
There are a range of smaller and incredibly charismatic pubs in the area too; Hobo Kiosk serves a range of keg and small package beer from local brewers, all whilst in the most unusual and eclectic of surroundings, the Bridewell is another historic location, serving immaculately kept cask and some modern craft keg, whilst Albert’s Schenke is a larger beer hall style venue with a range of keg and cask available alongside a German style food menu. If in doubt, the Head of Steam is only just up the road on Hanover Street from Albert’s and the Bridewell; always a solid bet for good cask or keg beer.
Further up along the dock road and near to the Liver Buildings, Carnival Brewing’s Taproom will be open during the BeerX event, serving a range of their beers and some from across the Irish Sea as part of a special event.
The Area set back from the waterfront, towards the main university areas of the city contains some remarkable pubs and bars, with many stocking some incredible beer and holding a wonderful atmosphere. Venues like the Grapes, Roscoe Head, the Dispensary and the Keystone have a great cask beer line up, with the Keystone having plenty of craft keg to back their collection up.
There are other quirkier and historically significant venues in the area too, that also do beer on cask; the likes of Outpost, Ye Cracke, The Pilgrim and Liverpool’s smallest pub, The Coach House are all nearby the bombed out church of St Luke’s. Also in this area, the Philharmonic Dining Rooms has a wide cask selection and some salubrious surroundings to take in.
The Belvedere Arms has recently undergone some renovation and change of ownership, with that has come a refreshing of the beer selection; four lines each of modern cask and craft keg in rotation, supported by some standard continental beers and a very interesting small package beer fridge. Peter Kavanagh’s Victorian Pub is also in this area, on the fringe of the city centre, hosting a range of traditional cask ales in a very unusual pub setting.
Evidently, this list is not exhaustive and is not setting out to exclude any venues – there are plenty more shown on the map (HERE) and there are some exceptional venues which are over the water (such as Glen Affric, Black Toad and West Kirby Tap), up the coast along to Southport (including Beer Station, Trap and Hatch, Grasshopper and Tap and Bottles) just out of the city centre, with the likes of Black Cat, Little Taproom on Aigburth Road, Handyman Brewery, Haul and Crafty Swine all providing a great place to grab some cask or craft keg beer. Please do drop us a message via the form (HERE) or on or social media channels (Twitter, Facebook or Instagram) if you want any more information – we’d be delighted to help.
Enjoy your BeerX experience, everyone!!