Manchester Homebrew Expo & Commercially Viable Brewing Competition

Manchester has a lot of great brewers, not all of them brew professionally though. The number and quality of homebrewers in the Greater Manchester area is stunning, the numbers of homebrew shops that have managed to survive the advent of internet shopping is a testament to how well ingrained this hobby is, and the number of groups meeting up to swap beers, tales and tips shows that it’s something that’s not going to be disappearing anytime soon. If anything it’s still growing!

But how good are the homebrewers?

Well, during Manchester Beer Week, Beer Nouveau is opening its brewery tap to play host to the local groups and a Homebrew Expo.

For homebrewers

This is a chance for you to come along, work behind a bar pouring your beer for drinkers and getting direct feedback from strangers. Friends and family will always tell you your beer is good, total strangers tend to be more honest. By giving your beer to random members of the public you’ll get a different view on what people think, and what they like to drink.

For drinkers

This is a rare opportunity to taste beers that you will almost certainly not have tried before, to talk to the people who brewed them, and to let them know exactly what you think. And if you think homebrew isn’t that good, the Manchester Homebrew Group alumni include Beer Nouveau, Thirst Class, Five Oh Brew Co and Torrside amongst others!

Commercially Viable Brewing Competition

As part of this expo we’ll also be running a friendly brewing challenge amongst those attending, to brew a commercially viable beer that will be judged by those coming along to sample the beers.

This is a lot harder than it sounds, as commercial brewing is a lot more restricted than homebrewing. Whereas the ingredients get cheaper with scale, there’s a limit to which ones you can use. Then there’s also factors like Beer Duty to take into consideration, and how much bars are willing to pay for the end product. For those homebrewers taking part we’ll supply a list of the 27 hops currently available on the spot market that they are able to use, along with a spreadsheet that will allow them to enter their recipes and see how much Duty would be applied to the beer they brew, and how much the end pint would cost (on average) over a bar. Points will be awarded for good profit margins, presentation (bottle labels, pump clips, how it looks in the glass) and technical ability. Points will be deducted for bad profit margins and faults. These will give each beer a weighting multiplier which will then be applied to the public votes on the day.

Get Involved

So if you brew and want to show off your wares get in touch for more details as we organise things. And if you drink and want to come along and sample some amazing beers, then watch this space!


Manchester Beer Week is 10 - 19 JUNE 2016. The date of the homebrew expo is TBC