POPULAR pubs and breweries in Stalybridge and Mossley are raising a pint to celebrate after being named in CAMRA’s prestigious Good Beer Guide 2019.
Almost a dozen from the area are listed among 159 others as being the best in Greater Manchester.
CAMRA’s Good Beer Guide is the original independent guide to good beer and good pubs across England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and offshore islands.
It is researched by independent volunteers with every pub, country inn, micropub or tap room featured being visited at least once for assessment.
This year’s edition includes 4,500 of the best real ale pubs, with 36 new pub entries and five new breweries across the Greater Manchester region.
The citations in the guide for the pubs in Stalybridge and Mossley include:
• The Church Inn, Stockport Road, Mossley: This corner terrace pub takes its name from the nearby St John’s Church.
Now a free house, the traditional stone-built local has a comfortable lounge and bar that also serves the separate games room.
Four handpumps dispense regularly changing cask beers. The verandah at the rear provides a commanding view down the Tame Valley.
• The Fleece Inn, Stamford Street, Mossley: In 1890 the inn could accommodate three travelers, feed up to 50 and stable one horse.
Today visitors will find a tidy pub with a small vault area, an airy back room and a lounge. Cider or perry is always available.
Dogs are welcome but horses perhaps less so!
• The Rising Sun, Stockport Road, Mossley (real ale brewery): The pub started brewing its own beer in February 2016 using a 2½ barrel plant which can be viewed from within the pub.
The regular beer is Builders Craic, a 3.8% golden creamy smooth traditional session bitter, and other beers are brewed when time allows: Golden Ales and Bitters (3.8%-5.0%), Stouts and Porters (4.0%-8.0%).
• Millstone Brewery, Micklehurst Road, Mossley (real ale brewery): Vale Mill, originally part of Mossley’s cotton heritage, provides an appropriate home for the eight-barrel plant that was installed in September 2003.
The brewery crafts well-rounded beers using traditional malt and hops and produces four regular beers as well as occasional specials.
• The Angel, King Street, Dukinfield: Something of an oasis for real ale in the area. The pub features four regularly changing beers.
There is a large, comfortable lounge, a good taproom and a function room available to hire.
This is a pub to suit all tastes and age ranges.
• Bridge Beers, Melbourne Street, Stalybridge: A combined micropub and bottle shop. Beers are constantly changing and all locally sourced.
The bottle display is opposite. Upstairs is a comfortable lounge.
• Society Rooms, Grosvenor Street, Stalybridge: This Wetherspoon pub is named after the former Co-op store premises it occupies.
Enthusiastic management and a strong focus on real ales have made this a favourite destination for local drinkers.
Beer-oriented events and beer requests by customers have helped to boost the pub’s reputation. Real cider is always available.
• Station Buffet Bar, Stalybridge Railway Station, Stalybridge: One of the few Victorian station buffet bars remaining and well worth missing a train for.
A sympathetic refurbishment has allowed expansion of the food menu.
Nine handpumps dispense a variety of beers, plus at least one real cider or perry. Events include live music and Meet the Brewer nights.
• Wharf Tavern, Caroline Street, Stalybridge: Canalside pub which opened as a beer house in 1850, and was taken over by Gartsides Brewery in 1922 and the stained-glass windows re-call that era.
A free house since 1981, this is a comfortably furnished, cosy locals’ pub.
• White House, Water Street, Stalybridge: This popular pub is semi open plan but retains four distinct drinking areas.
Up to five guest beers from micros and Hydes Beer Studio complement the regular Original. Up to three real ciders are offered.
CAMRA is a not-for-profit consumer group that has been operating since 1971, and their vision is to have quality real ale and thriving pubs in every community.
Tom Stainer, Chief Communications Officer at CAMRA, said: “It’s fantastic to see the number of new pub entries in the Good Beer Guide 2019 and the continued growth in local brewing.
“We’ve seen such sweeping changes across the brewing and pub scene over the past year with brewing becoming more collaborative and socially-minded, and pubs continuing to diversify to cater for all tastes.
“This is the 46th issue of the Guide – a book that has become an essential companion for those with a passion for real ale and discovering the best places to find it.”