Donzoko Brewing Company tasting at mmm… and glug…

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free Donzoko Brewing Company tasting this Saturday (28 April ) for customers to try a one-off German-style beer, along with locally made artisan beer bread and pretzels.

Based in Hartlepool, Reece Hugill (aka Donzoko Brewing) has a love of brewing beers in a German style.

Germany has produced amazing beer for centuries. Rich beer heritage is embedded in the culture.

Donzoko takes this beer tradition and combines techniques from modern UK and American craft brewing to create refreshing, unfiltered beers, packed with flavour.

Reece’s kegged beers have been going down well in north east hostelries, including The Free Trade Inn.

And now we are pleased to launch his new bottled beer – a limited run 8.5% ABV ‘Rock Bottom’ Doppelbock’ at mmm… and glug… this Saturday.

Rock Bottom is a showcase of rich German malt and crisp lager yeast and is the first of Donzoko’s limited release Doppelbocks.

Along with a tasting of the beer, Newcastle-based Pink Lane Bakery will be at mmm… and glug… tasting freshly baked German beer bread (using the Donzoko brew) as well as their legendary pretzels.

Beer, bread and pretzels – does it get any better?

Want to know more about Donzoko Brewing?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm unless otherwise stated)

  • Saturday, 5 May – Opal Sunshine: Taste Opal’s zingy, fresh Belizean-inspired pepper sauces
  • Friday, 11 May – 40 Kola: Taste the new north east made ‘proper’ Kola (11.30am to 3pm)
  • Friday, 11 May – Masons Gin: Taste Yorkshire-distilled tea and lavender gins (4pm to 7pm)
  • Saturday, 12 May – Parlour Made: Taste award-winning local cheeses, including Durham Camembert
  • Saturday, 12 May – Durham Gin: Taste locally-made Durham gin, vodka and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 19 May – Consett Ale Works: Taste Consett’s classic ales, as well as their newly launched beers
  • Friday, 25 May – Lisbon Wines: Taste our small producer Portuguese wines with Victor

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Lakes Distillery gin tasting at mmm… and glug…

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free Lakes Distillery tasting this Saturday (21 April ) from 1pm to 4pm for customers to try their new rhubarb and rosehip gin liqueur.

The word ‘gin’ is derived from the Dutch for juniper, ‘genever’ and the juniper berry is the botanical at the heart of gin making.

Fortunately for the Lakes Distillery juniper grows wild in the fells of the Lake District.

They use this local juniper together with other 13 botanicals native to the Lakes, such as bilberry, heather and hawthorn, to produce a gin which is complex, intriguing and above all else, delicious.

Lakes have infused their classic gin with tangy Rhubarb and Rosehip, to introduce another world-class edition to its delicious artisan spirits portfolio.

Their Master Blender, Dhavall Gandhi described the exciting new spirit as, “A warming and sweet infusion that complements the fruity and fresh characteristics of our juniper-led classic gin.”

The liqueur will be available in 20cl and 70cl bottles at mmm… and glug… this Saturday.

Customers buying a 70cl of Lakes gin this Saturday will also receive a free Lakes ‘rocking’ gin glass (while stocks last). 

Image above – the blushing Lakes Rhubarb & Rosehip Pink Lady cocktail.

Want to know more about the Lakes Distillery?

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Vixin Cidre Normandy cider tasting at mmm… and glug…

Vixin Cidre at mmm and glug

mmm… and glug… are hosting a free Vixin Cidre tasting this Saturday (24 March) from 1pm for customers to try their Normandy apple and pear ciders.

Vixin cidre is the product of years of labour, travel, research and testing undertaken to create the perfect cider: fresh, crisp, natural and a delight to drink.

Vixin’s mission for a great cider started after they moved from London to New York and found ourselves missing the ciders so commonly available in the UK.

So off they went, traveling all over the UK, France, Belgium and the US for five years , tasting all the different ciders available.

Finally, they discovered the perfect French blend in a small cafe in Paris. A real, 100% pressed apple juice made from special French cider apples, fermented using a unique yeast from 1789.

The secret recipe had been passed on by generations of monks to create a delightful, sparkling, refreshing blend with a strong apple base and a glorious smell that transports you to an apple orchard in Normandy.

What we sell at mmm… and glug…

Vixin apple cidre – The perfect balance of crisp and sweet, Vixin apple cider is made from a blend of French cider apples with just the right amount of acidity, tannin and sweetness.

Refreshing, easy to drink and 100% natural.

Vixin pear cidre – Delicious pear cider with a delicate flavor, fresh pear aroma and a sophisticated finish.

An excellent refreshment with light, champagne-like bubbles.

Perfect for Brunch, with crepes, light salads, pasta and seafood dishes.

We hope you will enjoy Vixin – the champagne of ciders , dedicated to making every day a little bit more special.

So go on, find a special friend, open a bottle and enjoy your glorious day for a moment. Cheers to that!

Want to know more about Vixin Cidre?

mmm… and glug… best RateBeer retailer in region

Simone Clarkin mmm glug - Ratebeer award 1

mmm… and glug… has been named as the best place to buy craft beer in North East and Cumbria in the prestigious RateBeer.com awards.

The awards to breweries, pubs and retailers, sees beer lovers from dozens of countries rate their favourite tipples and where they buy or drink them.

mmm glug Firebrick Brewer RateBeermmm… and glug… owner Simone Clarkin is delighted to have been recognised in the awards, which many see as the most accurate source for beer information in the world.

She said: “We are so pleased that beer drinkers from the region and beyond have taken the time to rate the bottles and cans they bought from us, as well as praising our beer knowledge and customer service.

“The award is also a testament to the many great craft breweries we have worked with in the North East for over five years to constantly bring beers that our customers want to enjoy.

“We are always looking to find new ales and to organise events where people can meet the brewers who make their favourite tipples.

“Our congratulations also go to Newcastle’s Bacchus and Bridge Tavern, named as the region’s best pub and brewpub respectively in the RateBeer awards – very worthy winners indeed.”

mmm… and glug… is set to celebrate its tenth birthday this May, after moving to its 1,500 square foot Grainger Street store in late 2017 from the Grainger Market.

As well as over 300 different bottles and cans on its shelves, the store sells small producer wines, spirits and a wealth of international food ingredients.

With over 30,000 followers on social media the store is also set to launch an online ‘click and collect’ and delivery website in 2018, as well as an event and tasting space.

mmm… and glug…, which opened in 2008, stocks locally produced food and drink and supports more than 200 small food and drink producers and distributors from the north east and beyond.

About RateBeer

Since May 2000, RateBeer has remained an active forum for beer lovers to come together and share opinions of beers, and beer retailers in a free environment.

Established and maintained by dedicated volunteers, RateBeer has become the premier resource for consumer-driven beer ratings.

It also hosts features on beer culture and industry events, weekly beer-related editorials, and the internationally recognized, annual RateBeer Best competition.

A vibrant community of hundreds of thousands of members from more than 100 countries have rated hundreds of thousands of different beers around the world.

Want to know more?

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Hepple Gin tasting event at mmm… and glug…

Hepple Gin at mmm... and glug...

mmm… and glug… are hosting a free Hepple Gin tasting this Saturday (10 March) from 1pm for customers to try their award-winning Northumberland gin.

Hepple are rooted in the Northumbrian Moors, one of the most botanically vibrant environments in England, where they pick their green juniper and other wild aromatic plants that money cannot buy.

Hepple uses three techniques to capture the full range of flavour from their botanicals bringing them as alive in the bottle as they were in the hills!

They are a copper pot still. a Co2 extraction system and a rotary evaporator.

But enough of that, what does it taste like …

Hepple Gin tasting notes

Hepple Gin tasting at mmm and glugOn the nose…
There is an immediate fresh scent of green apple, bright grapefruit and spicy juniper.

This then opens up to reveal underlying notes of Douglas Fir, and fragrant blackcurrant.

On sipping …
The initial fresh citrus flavours evolve into unexpected ripe cantaloupe melon, the spicy fragrant juniper continues to coat the palate.

There is a luscious sweet mouthfeel, which is both juicy and quenching.

The finish …
Extremely long and this is where the juniper reveals itself further with flavours alternating between sandalwood and cedar with a notable savoury presence that complements the sweet blackcurrant and liquorice.

The sweet juiciness is maintained throughout the finish.

Cocktail ideas from Hepple Gin.

Want to know more?

Chilli beer is hot news for north east drinkers

Simone Clarkin and Jack O Keefe - Flash House mmm glug 2

Lovers of spicy food and ale are being given the chance to enjoy the best of both worlds with a chilli beer brewed for a popular local food and drink business.

North Shields craft brewery, Flash House Brewing and Newcastle’s mmm… and glug… have joined forces to create a six-chilli stout to mark the food emporium’s move to larger city-centre premises.

Flash House mmm glug Shy Bairns bottle chilli beerBottles of ‘Shy Bairns Get Stout Six’ Mexican chilli stout are being launched at mmm… and glug…’s current Grainger Arcade store from 1pm on Saturday, 28 October.

The free tasting, with Flash House Head Brewer Jack O’Keefe, is being held to say farewell to mmm… and glug…’s current Grainger Market home, before they relocate to larger premises on nearby Grainger Street.

mmm… and glug… owner Simone Clarkin is delighted to have created a perfect local beer to reflect the store’s love of cooking, recipes, food and drink.

She said: “Our customers love Flash House’s beers and they also love our huge range of chillies for cooking up great Mexican recipes.

“We spoke to Jack and MIlda about creating our own beer and making his next ‘Shy Bairns’ stout one with ancho, cascabel, chipotle, guajillo, mulato and pasilla chillies to mark our forthcoming expansion plans.”

Jack O’Keefe of Flash House Brewing, said: “mmm… and glug… and their customers have been really supportive of my beers since we set up in 2016.

“The ‘Shy Bairns’ series has been very popular, and I loved the idea of combining six smoky, spicy Mexican chillies into my latest brew.

“It has been going down well at our brewery tap house in North Shields, as well as in local bars – so we can’t wait to get those bottles opened for the tasting on the 28th.”

mmm… and glug…, which was set up in 2008, is expanding its business with a move to a larger 1,500sq foot headquarters in Newcastle city centre this month and the launch of a ‘click and collect’ service and online shop soon.

Flash House Brewing is nestled on a hill in North Shields, overlooking the River Tyne, surrounded by workshops and fishmongers.

The brewery, only a stone’s throw away from the revitalised Fish Quay, brews small batch, expertly crafted world beers in the old heartland of the industrial North East.

The free Shy Bairns Get Stout Six chilli beer tasting (for over 18s only) is being held at mmm… and glug…, 10-13 Grainger Arcade, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5QF from 1pm on Saturday, 28 October 2017.

Want to know more about Shy Bairns chilli beer?

Other events at at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 4 November: Two Birds Spirits – come and taste our countryside-inspired gins and flavoured vodkas, including their legendary Christmas Spice vodka
  • Saturday, 11 November: Peelham Farm – come and taste delicious hand-cured organic charcuterie from the Borders
  • Saturday,11 November: Lilliard Gin – come and meet Kate the distiller and taste her Jedburgh-distilled craft gin
  • Saturday, 25 November: The Lakes Distillery – come and taste gins, vodkas and the ONE whisky
  • Saturday, 2 December: Gonzalez Byass – come and taste Spanish wines and sherries
  • Saturday, 9 December: Durham Gin – come and taste Durham’s handmade gins and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 16 December: Gonzalez Byass – another chance to taste Spanish wines and sherries with Hamish from Gonzalez.

Coming soon …

  • We are hoping to be in our new shop at 129 Grainger Street (opposite the old Barclays Bank) at the end of October. Watch out for news and opening events.
  • Click and collect at mmm… and glug… To find out more sign up for news below.

Croft Twist tasting at mmm… and glug…

Croft-Twist-at-mmm-glug

Come and taste Croft Twist at mmm… and glug… this Saturday (16 September) from 1pm.

Croft-Twist-tasting-mmm-glugCroft Twist is a take on the refreshing Andalusian ‘rebujito’ (which is Fino sherry, lemonade laden with ice and a garnish of mint).

This British version is more elaborate as it blends natural, freshly made elderflower, lemon and mint cordials with Croft Fino and water; all gently sparkled.

The drink is best served with a garnish of basil or mint and lots of ice.

The packaging design evokes British confidence and nostalgia. It cleverly interprets the flavour of Croft Twist and the essence of the Croft brand into an original and contemporary design.

Its alcohol content is 5.5% and we are selling Croft Twist in 70cl bottles.

Want to know more about Croft Twist?

Other events at at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 23 September: The Lakes Distillery tasting – come and taste Lakes Gin, Lakes Vodka and ‘The ONE’ whisky
  • Saturday, 30 September: Lisbon Wines – come and taste our new Portuguese wines.

Coming soon …

  • We are hoping to be in our new shop at 129 Grainger Street (opposite the old Barclays Bank) mid to end of October. Watch out for news and opening events.
  • Click and collect at mmm… and glug… To find out more sign up for news below.

Beers and bees at mmm… and glug…

Rigg and Furrow beers at mmm and glug

Food and drink lovers can taste local craft ales and meet over 10,000 honey bees when mmm… and glug… hosts a ‘Beers and bees’ event on Saturday, 2 September from 1pm onwards.

Rigg and Furrow beers and beesRigg & Furrow, an authentic Northumberland-based farmhouse brewery, will be tasting their beers in the Grainger Arcade store.

Giving a new lease of life to an old milking parlour Ring & Furrow create new takes on Farmhouse beers – beers originally brewed for thirsty farm workers during the summer months.

Brewing by hand, this family run brewery celebrates the best of home-grown Northumbrian and British produce, whilst creating exciting and innovative beers.

Head brewer, Theo will be tasting some of his favourite brews, including:

  • Run Hop Run – 4.2% Simcoe Session IPA
  • The Pale Ale – 3.8% English Pale
  • Owl Porter – 4% Porter
  • Trickster – 4.3% Hoppy Amber Ale
  • Sham Pain – 3.5% Elderflower Farmhouse Ale
  • Rhuble Rhubarb – 3.6% Farmhouse Ale.

Beers and bees at mmm and glug...

The Hogarth Honey bees, which proved a huge hit at the store earlier this summer, are returning with the first of their precious Yorkshire Moors heather honey.

Youngsters (and those not so young) have the chance to taste the honey and find out more about protecting the much-needed insects.

Michael McCartney of Hogarth Honey, based in Wolviston Grange, said: “I would love to talk to as many potential beekeepers and amateur gardeners as possible when we visit mmm… and glug… so we can spread the word about protecting our local bees.”

Rigg & Furrow and the Hogarth Honey bees will be at mmm… and glug… 10-13 Grainger Arcade, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5QF from 1pm on Saturday, 2 September.

Grainger Arcade-based Pet Lamb Patisserie will also be providing hand-made Hogarth Honey bee flapjacks to taste at the event.

Want to know more about beers and bees?

Other events at at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 16 September: Oktoberfest 2017 – come and taste our Oktoberfest specials
  • Saturday, 23 September: The Lakes Distillery tasting – come and taste Lakes Gin, Lakes Vodka and ‘The ONE’ whisky
  • Saturday, 30 September: Lisbon Wines – come and taste our new Portuguese wines and craft beers.

Coming soon …

  • We are hoping to be in our new shop at 129 Grainger Street (opposite the old Barclays Bank) mid to end of October. Watch out for news and opening events.
  • Click and collect at mmm… and glug… To find out more sign up for news below.

Muckle Brewing ales at mmm… and glug…

Muckle Brewing at mmm

Muckle Brewing is a tiny brewery with big values and mighty flavours – and we are delighted to be holding a ‘meet the brewer’ at mmm… and glug… on Saturday, 5 August 2017 from 1pm.

Situated close to Hadrian’s Wall, in an idyllic rural setting, Muckle select the best grains and hops to create ales with layers of flavour, a strong head and a refreshing taste.

Many years of brewing experimentation, testing, successes and failures have culminated in the development of Muckle Brewing’s inaugural five ales.

Definition: Muckle – Northumberland and Scottish dialect – great, massive, huge. In Northumberland used mainly as an adjective to describe big, large or mighty; muckle house, muckle tree.

What we sell at mmm…

Muckle Brewing ales at mmmMuckle Buster red ale
Windshields Crag marks the highest point of Hadrian’s Wall from where dramatic views open across Kielder Forest and the Cheviot Hills in the north; over purple heather moorlands leading to Cold Fell in the south; to the Solway Firth and Criffell in the west and to the east the Wall weaving and climbing along the Great Whin Sill ridge past mirrored loughs and roman forts.

Muckle Buster, a fruity red ale, is inspired by the radiant sunsets across the big skies of the Solway Firth where Hadrian’s Wall marches westward to the coast.

Muckle Chuckle amber ale
Haltwhistle Burn rises from the peaty uplands of Hadrian’s Wall Country in the shadow of the Great Whin Sill.

Gathering strength on its journey to the South Tyne Valley, it tumbles through a dramatic sandstone gorge with densely wooded banks, descending through an industrial heritage of wool, coal, lime and brick; now home to red squirrel, roe deer, otter, heron and dipper.

Muckle Chuckle, a refreshing amber ale with layers of flavour, is crafted around the sound of the burn bubbling and chuckling over and around the dark, mossy stones of Haltwhistle Burn Gorge.

Muckle Tickle bitter
During the summer months, wander through the graceful grasses and flowers of the upland hay meadows of Northumberland; bare calves brushed and tickled by the fescue grasses and flowers and seed heads of Wood Cranesbill and Meadow Buttercup; singing Skylarks hovering overhead and sun shining.

Muckle Tickle, a refreshing light bitter, is crafted of the calmness, tranquillity and colour of that sunny Hay Meadow in Hadrian’s Wall Country.

Muckle Moss Stout
Moss is the name used for the peat bogs and mires that scatter the hills and moors of Northumberland. Wrapped in myth and legend the mosses are places of unsure footing and deep, black peat-stained pools.

Muckle Moss, a National Nature Reserve, is situated in the undulating cuested landscape of Hadrian’s Wall Country and is a place of Curlew and Snipe, Bog Rosemary and Cotton Grass.

Muckle Moss Stout mirrors the character of the Moss. Rich, dark, aromatic with a good strong head the colour of Cotton Grass.

Whin Sill Blonde ale
The Great Whin Sill is a narrow, north facing ridge of hard dolerite rock running across Northumberland. Formed from cooled magma the rugged, rocky outcrop of the Whin Sill provides a dramatic backbone for Hadrian’s Wall, built by the Romans in 122 AD.

Whin Sill Blonde is brewed with Progress and Bramling Cross hops; giving an initial citrus flavour, followed by sweet grass and then a biscuity finish.

Refreshing and light, perfect for a warm sunny summers day.

Want to know more about Muckle Brewing?

Thanks to Muckle Brewing for the information and (c) images on this page.

Meet the Hogarth Honey bees at mmm…

Honey bees - Hogarth Honey

Food and drink emporium mmm… and glug…, currently based in the Grainger Arcade, will host over 10,000 local Hogarth Honey bees on Saturday, 24 June from 12 noon onwards.

Hogarth Honey bees at mmm and glugThe Hogarth Honey bees, which proved a huge hit at the store last summer, are returning with the first of their precious local summer honey.

The free event will give youngsters (and those not so young) the chance to taste the honey and find out more about protecting the much-needed insects.

mmm… and glug… owner Simone Clarkin hopes to not only get families to taste the honey, but also to find out how to encourage bees to their own gardens and neighbourhoods.

She said: “We certainly expect the Grainger Arcade to be ‘buzzing’ after last year’s meet the bees event literally stopped people in their tracks outside our shop.

“Bees are pollinators and play a huge part in the UK’s food chain. One third of the food we eat would not be available, but for the hard work of our bees.

“When the Hogarth Honey bees visited us last year (see photo below) we found many people, particularly children, who had never tasted honey before – and they loved it!”

Hogarth Honey bees visit mmm in 2016Michael McCartney of Hogarth Honey, based in Wolviston Grange, is looking forward to once again being asked lots of questions about his much-loved bees.

He said: “Bees fly about 55,000 miles to make just one pound of honey, that’s over twice around the world. And honey was even used as currency in Roman times.

“But, bees are in danger of disappearing from our environment. Farming practices continue to disturb the natural habitats of solitary bees and bumblebees.

“The honey bee is also under attack from the Varroa mite and it is only the care provided by myself and other local beekeepers that is keeping north east colonies alive.

“I would love to talk to as many potential beekeepers and amateur gardeners as possible when we visit mmm… so we can spread the word about protecting our local bees.”

The Hogarth Honey bees will be at mmm… and glug… 10-13 Grainger Arcade, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5QF from 12 noon on Saturday, 24 June.

Grainger Arcade-based Pet Lamb Patisserie will also be providing hand-made Hogarth Honey bee flapjacks to taste at the event.

mmm… and glug… recently announced plans to expand its business with a move to a larger headquarters in Newcastle city centre and the launch of a ‘click and collect’ online shop.

Want to know more before the Hogarth Honey bees visit?

Other events at at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Patagonian wine tasting (date tbc)
  • Summer fruit beer tasting (date tbc)
  • Ooft! meet the maker – come and taste hot Scotch Bonnet pepper and smoky chipotle sauces (date tbc).

Coming soon …

  • We are moving to a bigger shop on Grainger Street – watch this space!
  • Click and collect at mmm… and glug… To find out more sign up for news below.