Bison Bank Holiday Bonanza

Bison Beer is on the Map
It May be bank holiday weekend but we won’t be running around any maypoles or Morris dancing just yet. Instead we’re remaining indoors whilst we wait for the official start of summer – from the Met Office! Luckily we’ve teamed up with various artists across Brighton to welcome you into their houses with delicious Bison Beer. Go and escape the elements on the Central Trail with 20 venues to choose from within walking distance of our store. We’re exhibiting some of the art in store too so swing by and cheers to that with a beer on us. And if you don’t feel like intruding on the artist’s houses then you can hang out at the Vans store with cans of See Side APA on offer Saturday night where Will Blood, amongst others, will be drawing on skateboards for Deck Show 2 before his 5 week solo show at Brush. Then there’s the small matter of draught Beast Street IPA at the opening of shop friend, Oli Butler’s, Trunk Top 86 on Gardener Street and Brighton Tattoo Convention.

The guys and gals from Crate Brewery came down from East London for our latest meet and greet at the Crafthouse last night. 64 Degreespaired some delicious food to their brews, featuring the one off Oceanic Pale Ale that got rave reviews by those in attendance by the seaside. Somehow there’s still a few growlers of that (but no more beef brisket) left so come on down and check it out today.

We also went to Arundel this week as we finally felt ready to try and brew a DIPA. We took plenty of help with us with Coconut IPA kings Matt and Ben joining the brew squad which included Les from The Bison Arms team and plenty of Arundel regulars as well. The story started at the Pulborough Citrus Centre where we picked lemons the size of Nick’s head from the tree and zested them overnight. In the spirit of doubling up we’ve all agreed to try and double our press-ups by the time the brew comes into can…

 

Automaton IPA | Salopian Brewery

These guys don’t worry about telling ya about the beer on the bottle, that’s for you to decide. It’s a sweet and juicy IPA with a little bitterness to finish off. It’s a Bank Holiday sunshine kinda beer boys and girls. Head to that Bison fridge and give it a go!

I’ll give this four and a bit Bretts outta five. Cheers!

Shouting, LAGER, LAGER, LAGER

A Nation of Lager Lovers
Last weekend we took all the beer we could get our paws on to the Brighton Marathon. In addition to our own Bison Beer we had pale ales from Brighton Bier and Island Records, as well as 8 kegs of pils from Two Tribes. With 4 local ales available we welcomed runners, and their family & friends to the bar on a bright and sunny day by the beach. We briefed the staff with some tasting notes and waited for thirsty punters to carefully choose their pints. But we didn’t have to wait long to see what the general public wanted: a cold crisp lager. We forget, whilst we kick back in our little crafthouse that we live in country full of lager fans. As craft beer makes the headlines it must be known that for each pint of craft ale sold there will be 3 more Fosters, Kronenbourg or Grolsch’s served. So it should’ve come as no surprise that we sold out of Two Tribes Pils first then. You live and learn.

Henry and the rest of the team will not likely be drinking any lager or running the London Marathon this weekend. Instead we’ve spent the week resting up and sourcing some beerilliant craft beer for you Brightonians to get to grips with. We’ve tried a few of the new brews this week and you can check out what we thought here. The Magic Rock Un-Human Cannonball is Un-Real and, sadly now Un-Available…

Machete Double IPA | Birrificio del Ducato

DIPAs are all the rage right now and this one comes outta Italy! Heavily hopped with tropical fruits running through this 7.6% number. Good balance going on here with a lasting bitter finish. I’d certainly enjoy drinking this again so I suggest you grab one and give it a go.

I’ll give this four Bretts outta five. Cheers!

 

Run, Bisons, Run

Let’s Keep it Local
You’ve just done 26 miles and you’re on the home stretch with a slight seaside tailwind spurring you onto the end. The final 500m are the best strides you’ve ever taken and Bison Beer is waiting for you at the finish line. Standing by with the thirsty friends and family of thousands of runners who decided to #bemorebison. We’re proud to be part of this incredible city and we’ve got 7 Sussex brews to celebrate the seventh Brighton Marathon. With beers from Brighton Bier, Dark Star and Bison plus cider from theSeaCider chaps we’re pretty sure there’ll be something for everyone to cheers to. And if not, there’ll be plenty of prosecco and an abundance of Brighton Gin to get stuck into.

If last weekend’s tap takeover whet your whistle then snap up some tickets to a great night with Crate Brewery at our little crafthouse.
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For £15 you can expect 4 beers with food pairings from 64 Degrees, compered by Brighton based comedian Will Rankin. Comedy Dave has ruled himself too big for the shop nowadays after an awesome show on Saturday where his London based comedians wiped the floor with the local jokers. It must be noted that Will wasn’t there. Cheers to everybody that came down to support the comedians and drink Bison Beers. Brighton showed its true colours on Sunday with an epic win for the Homebrewers, who beat pros from Cloudwater,Laines and the likes in the Brewtorial quiz. Our very own Tamara D’Silva wrapped things up with some smooth Sunday Blues that we’re hoping to hear a lot more of soon www.youtube.com/watch?v=1–L1en5Pbw

See Side APA 2016 Edition | Bison Beer

BIG hops in this, fruity and bitter. An easy drinking American Pale Ale perfect for the summer time. Nab a can and head to the seaside why don’t ya.

I’ll give this refreshing beach ready tin four and a bit Bretts outta five. Cheers!

East Street Tap Takeover

The Magnificent Seven
Saturday
Brighton’s best barber, Milo, will be on hand to fix you up and have you looking sharp for the comedy at East Street Tap. He’s hanging out trimming beards and drinking beers from 12-4pm beforeBarrel of Laughs begins around 8. It’s standing room only now so rock up nice and early to see Brighton take on London in a jovial face off – make sure you sip on the brand new See Side APA whilst you wait eh! You’ll get priority entry and 20% off your brews with a wristband and we’ve got one of the last pairs to give away to the first person who asks at the shop today. Be More Bison.facebook.com/events/214398468921634

Sunday
Our very own Tamara D’Silva will be singing the blues to get you in the mood for Brewtorial’s beer quiz from 5pm. Nobody knows what format they’re going to follow but it’ll be fun to watch the action unfold as brewers from Bison Beer, Northern Monk, Celt andSignature represent a team captained by Brighton’s Nic Donald. They’ll be taking on Brighton’s Home Brew Club championed by craft beer enthusiast James Thor. Fingers crossed Brewtorial’s Joshconsiders bringing back his infamous round of ’Scouse or Mouse’…

Himalayan Red Rye Ale | Big Hug Brewing
This rye ale from Big Hug packs some serious flavour. She pours ruby red with a lasting off-white head. On the nose, lots of malt, and a little spice. Columbus and Mosaic hops are the chosen choice for this brew to balance out the big 6 malts used! The Himalayan is an easy drinking beer with a dry rye backbone running all the way through. I’ve not had many Big Hug beers but they will be at The Western for #5 of the tap takeover weekend. I’ll also be checking out the other 9 involved throughout the weekend for sure.

Music To Your Beers

Return of the See Side!

Island Records are joining us next weekend to takeover East Street Tap so we’ve shipped their Session IPA in to give you guys a taste of what’s to come. What’s more, our See Side APA is almost ready and is set for a summer of love, starting at EST for the tap takeover on 8th-10th April, then heading to the finish line for theBrighton Marathon bar on Sunday 17th April. We’ve put together a bit of a Brighton vs for the tap takeover theme with Comedy Dave bringing down some big hitting comedians from the big smoke to take on Brighton’s best. The action gets under way at 8pm Saturday 9th April and you can reserve a seat for free by emailing us here: cheers@bisonbeer.co.uk

We turned one last week and bloody ‘ell we drank some beer. As is customary on any celebration we started in 64 Degrees and ended up asleep in the pub. Cheers to all who joined us for a beer in store and everybody who sent a birthday card. In case you missed it, here’s the story of our first year told through social media: http://sfy.co/c0xWB

Chuckleberry Sour | Hawkshead
Heard of a Chuckleberry? No me neither, it’s a fun cross of Redcurrent, Gooseberry and Jostaberry. This Berliner Weisse pours vibrant red and has been aged on Chuckleberries! On the nose you get some light berry flavours but when you take a mouthful it wakes you straight up with a tart / sour berry punch and finishes up dry. The chuckleberry sour is a fun, refreshing beer with some funky art work going on! If you’re into sour beers or like trying something a little different then you’ll have a chuckle with this one! Go grab a bottle and head down the beach while the sun lasts Brighton! Cheers.

Q & A with The Kernel

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Evin O’Riordain opened The Kernel in 2009 after moving to London from Waterford a decade earlier. He found a job selling artisan cheese at Neal’s Yard Dairy and was sent to New York in 2007 to help open a cheese shop in Manhattan. It was there he discovered the beers that would shape his future and arguably ours as beer drinkers. The brewer behind Kernel beer doesn’t do many ‘meet the brewer’ evenings so we decided to make him feel at home with a cheese pairing menu courtesy of 64 Degrees. Eat, drink and ask questions was the agenda for Evin’s visit to Bison Beer, and we’re pleased to share some insightful answers from the occasion here..

THE PAIRINGS

Table Beer, 3.2% – Roasted cauliflower with zesty mature cheddar foam.

Bière De Saison (Burgundy Barrel Aged), 5.0% – Ricotta with lime rye

Amber (citra), 4.9% – Celeriac with cured egg yolk and zatar.

Export India Porter, 6.2% – Tiramisu style spiced ginger cake with mascarpone

THE GRILLING

Q. What do you think of the term ‘craft beer’.

A. It’s a commercial term used to define something that shouldn’t be defined.

Q. Tell us about your beer

A. Table beer is a technically difficult beer to make that you wouldn’t know by tasting it. Brewed to be enjoyed any time of the day or night, it’s the kind of beer you can get on with life after drinking. With saisons we reduce things to their simplest principles. The less you control it the better the outcome & how you relate to it. The wood becomes where yeast and bacteria live as they age and constantly change the beer. Now have 60 barrels to artfully blend in. I still don’t fully understand it – an endless surprise

Q. Why did you decide to open The Kernel?

A. I was cheesemonger who used to work for Neal’s Yard whilst doing PhD in philosophy. I was sent over to America (NY) 2007 to set up a shop for a customer. After cheese lessons I used to go for beer and learn about beer like cheese – it blew my mind. I grew up on Guinness in Ireland and the clean, crisp beers were a revelation. I came back to London in 2009 and started brewing for The Kernel. Ignorance teaches you as does trial & error. Keep it simple I loves brewing that’s where I like to be. It’s a process of learning but the most important thing is tasting, like it is with cheese.

Q. How do you go about developing the taste?

A. We all have tastebuds but it’s just tasting and learning and the beers change, they are never the same. The most important thing is quality. Using the same equipment & process no matter how they do it each brewer always produces a different beer, but that’s what the kernel is about. It keeps our beers fresh. As you get bigger it’s hard to not repeat yourself but we try and do it differently and that’s what keeps us excited about brewing.

Q what is an IPA?

A. There is no one that makes an IPA like it traditionally was. It comes down to how a brewery interprets it. We brew an IPA at 7% and pale at 5% because that’s the way we like it. It’s very much down to how each individual brewery likes it. When the style first came in to existence (travelled to India) they were very dry, heavily hopped and not strong. They were more like session IPAs.

Q. Are you affected by a hops shortage?

A. We use a lot of hops but have good relationships which hopefully means we will always have supply but hey if they run out of hops we will make more sours! But it happens in Austria & Germany for example. I’m more concerned with global warming. There are a couple of breweries, Adnams for example, who have tried to measure their carbon footprint and they’ve looked in to it and made changes to their business from it.

The Bison Arms – Crowdfunding Begins

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As of Friday 27th November 2015 crowdfunding begins for what we hope to be our next big adventure. We need you good people to help us kick Burger King to the curb and keep the lovely Brighton Old Town free from Whoppers and Royale’s with cheese! At www.thebisonarms.co.uk you’ll be able to first register your interest to find out more on our plans for an honest and worthwhile Sussex-centric tap room & restaurant and also keep tabs on progress as things develop. Here is a little background to the mission…

·   The Bison Arms will be created & run by a local collective of small business owners in Brighton & Hove, ourselves included (obviously)!

·   Our aim is to revive the derelict ground & lower ground floor site at Grade II listed Clarendon Mansions at 80 East Street, Brighton.

·   It has been trading as a pub for decades but has been vacant for the past 4 years including a short squatter stint.

·   The Burger King franchise wants to build a restaurant in the vacant space that looks out over the sea.

·   Residents in the city have raised concerns that a Burger King in the listed building would ruin the seafront’s appearance and dilute a prime position in Brightons Lanes area.

·   An online petition was started to keep Burger king out of The Lanes. It got 3,000 signatures in just 4 hours and a grand total of 11,500

·   https://www.change.org/p/brighton-amp-hove-council-keep-burger-king-out-of-the-south-lanes

·   We want to revive Clarendon Mansions as a pub. A pub that champions everything about Brighton & Sussex.

·   We have started a Crowdfunder campaign in order to raise the funds to carry out Phase 1 of the project – Reviving the Ground Floor pub.

·   Phase 2 would be reviving the lower ground floor and would be self funded once the pub was up and running.

·   Crowdfunding means that investors big and small from the local community can contribute to the project, have a stake in the business that will grow as the business does as well as other stakeholder benefits including discounts, events and gifts.

·   Our focus would be sourcing from local breweries around Sussex for craft beers and real ales with ties and politics which you often see in Brighton and showcasing them in our ‘Tap Room’.

·   We intend on collaborating with local chefs to run the kitchen.

·   The design and influence on the interior to be worked on by a number of local artists.

·   We aim to showcase artworks, photographs and literature developed by local creatives.

·   We want The Bison Arms to be funded, built, staffed, supplied and enjoyed by the people of Brighton & Sussex.

·   We want to help make Brighton a city where local business can thrive and build a pub that can give back to the local economy.

There is a real alternative to Burger King. Have it Your Way.

Be More Bison

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There’s a beer for that. That day, that dinner, that situation. There’s 365 different beers in our shop and we’re working our way through them all as quickly as we can. We’ve even made things nice and simple for the folks that frequent Bison Beer. The fridges can be viewed as an atlas, with Asia, Australia and some cool Kiwi stuff on the East side. The middle of the map features the UK and Europe where our own brews reside. Out West is where it all began: the USA. It doesn’t end there as the scaffold boards are organised to keep it simple, stupid. There’s a Sussex shelf celebrating the 63 different micro breweries we’re blessed with in the area. Belgian and German sections, along with what we call Old Man Ales, that take care of Dad. The bookcase by the window is easily accessible too; imagine it as a light to dark theme. Up top are the Pilsners and Pale Ales. In the middle are some Ambers and Reds with the Stouts and Porters sitting down low.

We like to shop local at Bison Beer. That’s why we’re supporting the beerilliant Sussex breweries in store and celebrating those that are local, independent and proud. Craft beer is everywhere in Brighton at the moment and it’s great to see the See Side APA and bEAST STREET IPA in pubs and restaurants across town. So come sit down and rest with us; we have a long way to go.

Hello Brighton!

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We are best mates who met at university, and lived above a local offie in London. Between us we tracked down every student night going and always found a few quid to get another round in. After scraping through our studies we grabbed our girlfriends and moved to Brighton, spending long periods in local hostelries doing what we’re now referring to as ‘research’. As the craft beer revolution begun, we patiently observed it, mainly from The Mash Tun.

Now we’ve opened our very own bottleshop, which will stock hundreds of the beers we love. We’re 100% independent and aim to bring a wide and varied selection to the centre of Brighton, paying particular homage to Sussex breweries.

So come, brothers and sisters throughout the land, let’s celebrate the rise and rise of craft beers. For The Times They Are A Changin’