Back in a past life, when I controlled a pub’s social media accounts, we announced that we were going to get some Magic Rock Brewery beers in as guest ales and the online enthusiasm was palpable. I remember harassing the poor bar staff on site to tell me, and photograph, when the beer was in, racked, tapped etc. Back then beer wasn’t something I had any interest in, but I am a sucker for nerdy enthusiasm and this was like Christmas.
It’s largely the reason I have a bit of a soft spot for Magic Rock, and when Tilt mentioned they were doing a tap take over and meet the brewer session, I figured that my newly acquired desire to get into beer should probably go along and find out what the fuss was about. Turns out that nerdy enthusiasm I witnessed online years ago, yeah I got to see that in real life and it was great.
Richard from Magic Rock spoke about the brewery, the beers and Birmingham, but mainly answered a lot of questions. They might be based in Huddersfield, but it was clear there was a lot of love for Magic Rock in Birmingham; people asked a lot of questions about the beers, Magic Rock’s history (they started back in 2011) and what to expect in the future. To be honest I should probably be able to recall more of the talk, but I was mainly interested in how what had previously felt a bit like a noisy common room had gone deadly silent to listen to Richard talk. I guess that shows how much respect people have for the brewery – and why RateBeer named they second best new brewery in the world 2012, after only being open a year.
This is a terrible write up of the night because I failed to pay attention to how many beers were available, mainly because I was still a bit cautious about the whole ‘getting into beer’, but I think there were about seven. Given my propensity to forget names, the fact that I’d remember two of the beers that everyone raved about years ago was pretty impressive and so I mainly stuck to the core range, namely the Cannonball IPA and High Wire – Magic Rock’s tribute to the pale ales of the West Coast of America. Both a bit fruity, but fresh and delicious. I also tried the Bearded Lady, Magic Rock’s Imperial Stout which was rich and heavy; I tasted notes of chocolate and coffee, maybe some darker fruits too, which made it feel like if you were looking for a two-in-one dessert and after-dinner drink, this would hit the spot.