Esteemed young chefs, Manc indies and BBQ on the firepit

Buckle up (craft) beer fans. Not only is Manchester Craft Beer Festival back for its second outing, but it’s bringing a whole new level of heat, with exciting local chefs and plenty of fire.

Whole lamb and beef ribs ‘a la cruz’, hung beef fore rib and fire veg are just a few things to expect

The two-day festival which takes place at Mayfield Depot 22-23 July will bring craft breweries from as close as Pomona Island and as far away as the New Zealand Beer Collective, with the festival’s latest announcement revealing an upgraded food offering mixing the best in young North West chef talent, local restaurant favourites and a guest chef headlined firepit.

Tom Bray Of Open Fire Kitchen Coming To Manchester Craft Beer Festival
Tom Bray, a man with the distinct look of someone who can be trusted with wood and fire Image: Country Fire Kitchen

Filling up on the barbecued good stuff

You can’t underestimate the importance of food on a day spent drinking thirds of medium to high strength beer. The heads over at Manchester Craft Beer Festival know this and they’ve pulled out the stops with this year’s announcement.

The newest addition this year will be The Fire Pits, an open-fire cooking area headlined by a host of guest chefs and live-fire specialists serving up the finest in rustic cooking. Friday sees Tom Bray from South American-inspired outdoor cooking specialists, Country Fire Kitchen, taking over fireside. Versed in the art of Asado cooking, whole lamb and beef ribs "a la Cruz", hung beef fore rib and fire veg are just a few things to expect.

From The Ashes Barbecue Pork Doughnuts Which Will Appear At Manchester Craft Beer Festival
Low-smoked pork doughnut anyone? Image: From The Ashes

Meanwhile, Saturday sees Ronnie Aronica from Sheffield neighbourhood bistro and natural wine bar Bench alongside Sam Grainger of Liverpool’s Belzan, Madre and current Escape to Freight Island open fire concept, Carnival. Self-trained cook and open fire cooking enthusiast channels natural Italian and Sicilian in his cooking whilst Grainger’s current work overseeing the coals at Freight speaks for itself.

A separate firepit, seen to by pitmasters From The Ashes BBQ, will operate throughout the festival too. The open fire operation which hails from London specialises in whole animal butchery, priding itself on the likes of low-smoked pork shoulder encased in handmade doughnuts.

Food From South African Restaurant Chakalaka Based In Manchesters Northern Quarter
Chakalaka making it a sausage party Image: Chakalaka

Local favourites and impressive Northern talent

A handful of locals are on the bill too. Chorlton’s Jerk Junction and Northern Quarter’s Chakalaka will be bringing their respective delicacies to help soak up the hops. Boerewors, Biltong and Bunny Chow will be on offer from the Northern Quarter South African restaurant whilst Jerk Junction will be serving Jamaican classics such as rice n pea, jerk chicken and curry goat.

The foodie announcement follows earlier music and beer reveals for this year’s festival. Breweries including The Kernel, Wild Beer Co, Pastore and Queer Brewing, as well as plenty of Manchester locals, will be pouring to the sounds of Goldie, Norman Jay MBE and David Holmes.

Manchester Craft Beer Festival 2022 takes place at Mayfield Depot 22 - 23 July. Tickets are available now and priced at £55. The ticket price includes all of your beer and entry for a five-hour session on either Friday or Saturday.

Follow Davey on Instagram and Twitter: @dbretteats

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