craft beer

#craftalesandcuriouscocktails

Our Crafty Journey continues....

When we first had the idea for the Crafty Horse Bar we wanted to use it to bring amazing craft beers from local (and not so local) brewers to festivals, markets and events across the South East. We've been blown away by the enthusiasm and interest we've had for this wherever we've been, both in what we're serving and also in the bar itself, which we've been careful to make sure looks the part. We've also really enjoyed the process of selecting and trying different beers so that we can do our best to help our customers make their selection - never tried a good porter, or a stout, or a double IPA? Now's the time.

We've also had some great support from partners like Food Rocks who we work with at Horsham and Lewes markets as well as a number of other events (keep an eye on our Facebook page), one of which will be the Joy Festival at Groombridge Park this June where we will be getting crafty with Vodka for 3 days.

So now we're extending our vision and offering to craft vodkas and gins as well as craft beer. This is going to be fun.

THE CRAFTY BEER BOX

Over the Christmas trading period we found that our 6 pack beer boxes were very popular - not surprising really, they're the perfect gift or stocking filler for anyone with even a passing interest in beer. Two months later and they're continuing to sell well and so we thought we might make them a bit more of a thing. We're not quite at the point where you'll be subscribing to the monthly Crafty Beer Box, but we do think that it would be nice to update it on a regular basis with the beers that we've really enjoyed in recent weeks and that you might enjoy too.

Here's what's in February's box: Magic Rock's 5% West Coast Pale Ale, High WireNorth Brewing's 5% Pale Ale, Sputnik and 6.9% West Coast IPA, Transmission; Signature Brew's 4.0% Studio Pilsner and 7.2% Double IPA, Stagediver and finally, Redwell's 5.9% collaboration coffee stout, Kofra.

To get your £16 Crafty Beer Box, just come and see us at the fantastic Food Rocks Horsham Market at the Carfax every other Saturday or catch us at various festivals and events, details of which will be posted here and on our Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages. Meeting us in person also gives you an opportunity to try a fantastic draught beer - Brighton Bier's Pale Ale and 360 Degree's Session IPA have been real favourite's so far this year and coming up next we have an IPA from Wiper and True and a couple of Pales Ales from Dark Star Brewing.

 

 

MAIDEN VOYAGE

Last weekend was our first event, earlier than planned thanks to a chance meeting with our friends at The Pizza Oven. 

Grittenham Barn Christmas Fair is about 30 minutes up the road, so a perfect test run in every respect. This turned out to be quite stressful 30 minutes, with full paranoia kicking in and 3 stops to make sure that everything that we had ratcheted down in the trailer was still where it should be (it was).

Midday came and we started to see a steady flow of people, with our Cranberry Bellinis & draught Brighton Bier going down particularly well, especially with Ben who had undertaken a monster train and taxi journey to come and see us. Great also to see friends Rick and Nicky who had decided to surprise us too.

Interest in The Crafty Horse Bar was high and it was good to speak to a few events planners and wedding organisers who had dropped in (Grittenham Barn is a popular wedding venue) and given us really positive feedback on the bar and how good it looked. All in all, we had a great day and learned a few things that we need to do better next time, like having more obvious beer menus and a bigger bin for all of the empties!

Next up is Horsham Christmas Market, where we will be in situ from Sunday December 18th right up to Christmas Eve. So do come and see us - we'll have a couple or more great beers on draught as well as draught Prosecco, mulled cider and a fantastic craft ale gift box for that last minute stocking filler or present for Dad.

PRINCIPLES

We're this close to being ready to roll; in fact our first gig is less than a week away and so it's literally been all hands to the pumps to get the finishing touches to The Crafty Horse Bar done, including the pumps themselves and our choice of beer.

Now beer and drinks generally are things that we can get pretty excited and passionate about and we've spent the last couple of months buying, tasting and have noted a pretty wide array before settling on what we want to kick off with. Of course, as time goes on we'll adapt to our audience, the seasons and what's on offer;  but for the first outing we wanted to offer what we knew we could get excited about.*

And so when I was out to dinner with a good friend recently and he asked me what we'd do if someone just wanted a pint of (insert name of generic lager/beer), it got me thinking. This needs to be a commercially viable venture and as much as we love beer, we're not doing it just for the love. So would we be cutting off our overly sensitive noses at the expense of sticking to our principles about wanting to serve amazing drinks that maybe our customers wouldn't know? I really hope not but I guess time will tell.

*For the record: Rapture Red Hop Ale and High Wire Pale Ale from Magic Rock Brewing; Sputnik Pale Ale and Transmission IPA from North Brewing; Studio Pilsner, Roadie All Night IPA and Stagediver Double IPA from Signature Brewing, Brooklyn Lager and on draught: Brighton Bier Pale Ale & London Bohemia lager. We also have a great Glera Frizzante sparkling wine on tap and Orchard Pig Explorer cider. Hopefully there's something for everyone.

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