Forget Dry January, this is why you’re being encouraged to drink beer

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The brewing industry has its own new-year trend and there are loads of Welsh events to celebrate

(Left Lee from Dog’s Window Brewery with Neil from Wales Ales
at Bridgend’s monthly CF31 Street Market)

There are all sorts of quirky fads to get involved with in January.  To name a few, you’ve got the cruelty-free foodie stint of Veganuary , along wit1h every pubs’ worst nightmare – Dry January.

And while Dry January might be good for your liver and your wallet – there’s one trend that actually encourages you to drink beer .
Tryanuary, which is now in its fifth year, was created to encourage beer fans to support independent breweries, pubs, bars and other retailers during what can be a challenging month for the industry.
“With more than 100 breweries in Wales on the surface everything is flourishing, however pubs are closing weekly and the majority of breweries are small or micro breweries,” said Neil Goodman, owner of Wales Ales bottle shop, who’s co-ordinating Tryanuary events.
He added: “Tryanuary was created to encourage beer fans to support their local and independent breweries in a very challenging month in the industry.  “So pop along to your local and try something new.”
Last year saw the introduction of Beer Days, where the spotlight is put on a different region celebrating the best of the beer across the UK and Ireland.  The campaign’s volunteers each take a turn to promote their area, bringing a valuable source of local knowledge to the campaign’s front line.

Wales has a number of events and promotions planned, here’s just a snap shot –

BOTTLE SHOPS
Wales Ales is the country’s only hand-delivered beer service specialising in small independent micro breweries, so it’s hardly surprising they’re showing their passion for Welsh Beer by getting fully behind Tryanuary. They have a number of fantastic offers on their website, including a bargain Mystery Bumper pack and seriously reduced prices on select premium beers. So if you fancy Tryanuary-ing something new then see their website for details www.walesales.com

Cardiff based bottle shop Pop’n’hops will be stocking a new brewery on the shelves every week from 9th January. Be sure to follow their blog on their website where they’ll be trying only new beers. www.popnhops.co.uk/

BREWERIES
Bridgend’s newest brewery DOG’S WINDOW have produced not just one but two special Tryanuary beers! Since launching in April last year they’ve quickly established a loyal following thanks to their innovative range and they are getting rave reviews on beer rating app Untappd.com. The first beer affectionately named “Play Dead” is a 9% abv Belgian Golden Strong Ale whilst “The Mutts Nuts” is a 7.5% abv Quad Hopped Citra DIPA. Both are available direct from the brewery or through local retailers.

Bridgend’s Bang-On Brewery are doing a very special Tryanuary beer hunt. Next week they’ll be hiding 19 golden tickets throughout South Wales. So if you’re lucky enough to find one you can take it to the brewery to redeem for a special ‘Not a Banksy’ Beer. Be sure to follow their FaceBook page for clues www.facebook.com/bangonbrewery/

Tuesday 29th January is quiz night at Bluestone Brewing Co, Prembrokeshire. Come along for a relaxed evening of quiz questions and beer. To get involved, you’ll be asked to make donations per person to the Wales Air Ambulance. The quiz starts at 7.30pm.

Grey Trees will shortly be launching their very popular Mosiac beer in cans. They previously did a small batch canning of their Champion Beer of Wales – Afghan Pale Ale a while ago but have resisted doing any more until now. So why not give their Mosiac a try and decide which is better, bottle or cans?

PUBS
To support Tryanuary at The Dog House in Caerleon they shall be posting information on the beers they have on tap from local and independent Breweries via their FaceBook page, they’ve already mentioned beers from Loko Polly, Broadoak Pear & Chilli Cider, Wrexham Lager and Northern Monk to name just a few. Please support by calling by and giving them a try out.

The Coach in Bridgend are now brewing their own beer on site and on Friday 11th you’ll be able to watch them brewing through the viewing window at the pub! They will likely brew their Bridgend Pale Ale or NEIPA, pop along and feel free to ask questions and sample one of their beers or the many great guest beers they have on for Tryanuary.

CAMRA South Wales Pub of the Year, The Cross Inn, Maesteg, have their usual quiz nights and live music nights throughout January and invite you to try before you buy, any of their beers on the bar.
Sunday 20th January Cathays Beer House are having a tasting day for our bottles and cans. £3 to taste various beers and ciders, £1 of which will be going to the Zante Strays charity.

HOP GROWING CLUB
Like beer? Like gardening? Then join the Bridgend Hop Growing Club. Their aim is to establish a hop growing community to grow hops to supply a local brewery for a special community beer. They aim on holding an initial meeting in the Bridgend area during January so if you’d like to get involved then join their FaceBook page www.facebook.com/groups/bridgendhops or email [email protected]

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