Grade II building hosts Grade I visit
Thirty members and friends of Lunesdale CAMRA branch, including ten members of Lancaster University Real Ale & Cider Society, have paid a memorable visit to Wigan’s All Gates brewery, home of a host of cask ales whose key note is definitely hoppy.
They spent a most enjoyable couple of hours in the brewery itself before finishing the evening in the bustling Anvil pub nearby.
All Gates is housed in stunning Grade II listed site which the present owners lovingly restored from its previous decaying state. Exposed brickwork, narrow staircases, a cosy custom-built hospitality bar and striking views over the cityscape are the dominant features of the 150-year old building.
Our hosts for the evening were Liane McPhelin and All Gates director David Mayhall, the latter giving the party a conducted tour of the premises, which combined a talk about the brewing process with intriguing details of the building’s history.
One of the most interesting features was the hop store, with its impressive range of hops, most of them New Zealand varieties with their characteristically pungent and fruity-floral aromas. Two fine beers were freely available throughout the visit. Caskablanca is a 4.1% golden ale with a wonderfully fruity and floral aroma and a dominant soft hoppiness in the mouth typical of New Zealand varieties. The second ale was a brand new mild, Maori, dark and delicious, bursting with chocolate and malt flavours but with no cloying sweetness.
The prize winning Anvil pub was our last port of call where six handpumps dispensed All Gates and guest beers, and an impressive spread of food awaited us. It was an appropriate end to an excellent evening. Many thanks to Liane and David (not to mention the brewers of those delicious ales) for their hospitality.