Wednesday, 3 August 2011


First published in the Tramlines Times, Saturday 23rd July, 2011.



Here at SPD HQ, we've got a book about the city, published by our forerunners, the City Council's Civic Information Service, in 1964. The book is called SHEFFIELD, England, with a foil-blocked title. It's completely beautiful. Inside the front cover, there's a quote from Confucius, ancient Chinese scholar. It reads thusly:

"How may I recognise a good craftsmen? First, by the reputation of his ancestors for honesty and sincerity; then by his ability to create something new with an experience that is old."

Pretty deep shit, we think you'll agree. Why are we telling you this? Well, Sheffield, as you probably know, has always had a reputation for making amazing stuff. For a long time, that stuff was mainly made out of steel. For 100 years or so, Sheffield pretty much made cutlery for the whole of planet Earth.

Today, a lot of people think those times are gone. That we don't make anything here anymore. But that's not really true. Yes, Sheffield steel no longer fills your Nannan's cutlery drawer. Yes, some of the factories have closed down. But the spirit that fueled them is still in the air.

And one of the best places to see that spirit is in the pub, with a pint in your hand. Some of the best beer in the world is made here, in Sheffield, in micro-breweries attached to amazing pubs. There are too many to mention here, and far too many individual beers to name. So here are the greatest hits, with tasting notes, like some sort of BBC Food and Wine programme. Look out for:

- Pale Rider, Kid Acne's beer of choice, made by Kelham Island, tastes like power.
- Easy Rider, it's softer younger brother.
- Farmers Blonde, by Bradfield, like summer and cows and meadows in a glass.
- The Tramlines special beer, by the Sheffield Brewery Company, which, like that wine you had on holiday, will remind you of the good times.

But, here at the SPD, there can only ever be one favourite. Moonshine, made by Abbeydale Brewery. Weapon of choice. Ticket to ride. Moonshine is a whole pint of Ron Burgundy shouting: HOA! LET THE GAMES BEGIN!

So this weekend, put down the Corona, and do us all a favour. This city makes its own beer, for the people who live here, and it tastes bloody brilliant. Just another Sheffield product. In the service of mankind.


The Sheffield Publicity Department.

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