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Inside Beer Ritz, Headingley, Leeds

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Possibly the best off licence in the North? Well, it’s certainly my idea of a well-hopped heaven… a true beer nirvana nestling on a quiet back street in the leafy suburbs of Leeds.

Beer Ritz has long been on my list of places to visit, due to the incredible selection of craft beers, real ales and imported rarities. Set up by acclaimed beer writer Zak Avery in the 90s, there’s one thing that’s not in doubt: these guys really know and love their beer.

And tastes are changing across the UK too; celebrating our brewing heritage, revelling in the fruits of the revolution from across the Atlantic from dynamic young craft breweries in the US, and enjoying more esoteric and exciting European brewers. After years where beer was largely synonymous with bland, base and bubbly lager, pubs and retailers are now catering for a public hungry for new tastes. Outlets like Beer Ritz, and the great beers they carry, are at the forefront of this change. I for one’ll drink to that. Cheers!

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Pretty in the pink – my birthday at Bare Arts

My 34th birthday celebrations at Bare Arts: enjoying good tunes, good ales and great company in Todmorden’s finest licensed outlet. My mate Tim and I are sharing the laptop to DJ in this shot. I’m quite impressed I was able to shoot this after enjoying the delights of the beer selection for so many hours 🙂

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Free Sandwiches at Bare Arts

Free Sandwiches Live

Knees up in Bare Arts, Friday 11th April.

Enjoying a refreshing glass of Trevor’s freshly brewed Cascade Ale on a Friday night. Music courtesy of the Free Sandwiches.

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Christmas Carols at Bare Arts

Christmas Carols at Bare Arts

Pre-Christmas carol singing, December 2007

Enjoying a slightly boozy sing-song on a Sunday afternoon. Possibly the most enjoyable carol singing I’ve ever taken part in … “The Twelve Days of Christmas – audience participation version” was so funny I had face-ache until the next day. Happy Christmas!

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Strange brew… inside the Barearts Brewery

Bare Arts Brewery

Inside Todmorden’s only brewery. Nestling alongside Gauxholme Viaduct lies this micro-brewery, run by the inimitable Trevor Cook. Here lies the start of many a good brew, and Trevor is not afraid to create memorably powerful beers in this deceptively small building. When I shot this, the air was laced with the sweet smell of malt as Andrew the master brewer was finishing off the last batch of ale for Christmas. The taste was as good as the aroma had promised…

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