Shepherd & Dog Beer Fest | Faulking
This past weekend was a pretty beer filled weekend but I had to make room to get out to the countryside and head to the beer festival at the Shepherd & Dog in Fulking. This place has a good selection of beers on a normal day of the week from the likes of Siren, Downslands, Bison Beer and many more but the beer festival was supposed to have a number of hard to find beers or ones you’d only normally find in the tap room of the brewery. I headed down on the third day, Sunday, and the weather was looking good thankfully as they have a great beer garden with a garden bar. Most pub beer festivals consist of their normal taps and maybe 10 barrels of ales and information to match which is great but these guys had gone the whole hog. They had set out a lower bar with around 4/5 ales and upper bar with around 10 keg beers followed by a garden bar with around another 10 beers. Along with that you got a beer festival glass for a £3 deposit if you did not want to take it home, I certainly did! Finally they had a printed booklet with all the beers, location and information which was good to have considering the amount of beers dotted about! I dived straight in and grabbed myself the Jakehead IPA which has been voted British best beer, it was good, packed a lot of flavour and a good starter to the beer filled afternoon. Not only did they have a great selection of beers but they had a pop up ice cream stall, one of the offerings was an ice cream made with beer and roaming around the garden and tables was a magician entertaining people with some cards tricks if that’s your thing! I had tried a few of the beers previously so I decided to go for any that I had not had like Life is a Peach by Siren, Underworld Milk Stout by Big Smoke, Flanders Red by Burning Sky, there was more but these are the ones I can remember after all the beer tasting! Sadly I missed out on two beers I was interested to try, the first was Partizans Raspberry and Lemon Saison, I did get a little taster but sadly it was foam mostly. The nice guy behind the bar said the keg line was messed up and had been dodgy all day so no chance of a real go on the Saison sadly. The other was a beer by Wild Beer Co’s, Einsteinium which is a hells lager, now normally I would not be interested but a lot of Wild Beers are very interesting using strange and unusual Ingredients which most of the time work out so I was sure it would be good and had been told on the Sunday it was good but sadly flew out the barrel on the Saturday, you win some, you lose some! I’ve not managed to get to many beer festivals this year but, this was possibly the best one with the selection of beers, venue and friendly staff on hand and behind the pumps. I’ll be back there next year and hopefully for more time to catch those quick get away beers! I’d recommend checking out the Shepherd and Dog if you’ve not already as they always have a cracking range of beers which change all the time! Enjoy!