Teams from Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, and London, as well as two from host city Manchester, will create one-off collaboration beers that will be put to a public vote on the opening weekend of this year’s festival to decide which city has the best brewing skills.
All of the beers will be launched at The Pilcrow’s ‘Summer Beer Thing’ on Friday 29 June, which takes place as part of Manchester Beer Week, with simultaneous launches held at venues in each of the other participating cities.
Drinkers at these events will be given the opportunity to vote for their favourite, while proceeds from the sale of the beers will also be donated to charity.
The line-up of breweries taking part in the competition includes three of those named among the top 100 breweries in the world at the recent RateBeer Best Awards - Manchester's Cloudwater Brew Co, which came in second, London’s Beavertown, and Northern Monk from Leeds.
“We are obviously incredibly proud of Manchester’s brewing scene, as the city boasts a large number of outstanding independent breweries,” said Manchester Beer Week organiser Connor Murphy. “So we thought it would be fun to put a selection of our breweries up against their counterparts from rival cities to compete for the unofficial title of England’s best.
“In reality, it’s all in the spirit of friendly competition and we are as keen to emphasise the collaborative element of the event, as this is a strong thread running through Britain’s independent brewing industry. We are hoping to shine a light on the superb producers contributing to the growth of the beer scene, not just in Manchester but in cities up and down the country.
“Manchester Beer Week is also committed to giving something back to the community so we’re absolutely delighted that this event will also help to raise vital funds for charity.”
As host city, Manchester will enter two teams into the competition. The first will be led by Cloudwater and will also include Track, Runaway and Wander Beyond. The second team from Manchester includes the city’s oldest brewery, JW Lees, alongside craft beer innovator Marble, Beatnikz Republic and Pomona Island.
Lost and Grounded anchors the team in Bristol and will be joined by Left Handed Giant and Moor Beer, while the Leeds team consists of North Brewing Co, Northern Monk, Kirkstall and Zapato.
Liverpool is captained by Mad Hatter, with Chapter, Neptune and Top Rope making up the rest of the side. Fourpure leads team London, alongside Beavertown, Brew By Numbers and Orbit.