Hanlons bar and restaurant open for service!

So last Friday night saw the opening of the bar and restaurant at Hanlons Brewery. This is a new venture for the brewery and one I had been looking forward to for a while. As you’ll know, I’ve always loved their produce and this was a chance to sample their brews, at source, and also to taste some food cooked with their beers. I booked my place, yes a lone place, but one where I knew I was never going to be alone.


I arrived and felt at home instantly, it was so nice to walk up the stairs and into a bar packed full of people there for the support of the brewery. I headed to my table, yes, I had a whole table, all to myself! Where else can you go and receive this kind of attention? Well clearly lots of places, but they won’t have the character, nor the ambience, of being sat deep within in the brewery, surrounded by vats crammed full of the exact reasons that brought you there. Looking out from the bar you can see right down into the brewery, and when you take your seat down there, being surrounded by blue lights, makes you feel like something really special is happening, and it is, just peer up through the windows above, and it’s all right there, but all around you, something is brewing.



The nights food was a set menu, as will be the plan for the following weeks, but this is a set menu that you’ll love. Steak and ale pie cooked with Port Stout, served with Yellow Hammer bread! I say it was served with bread, but to be honest it was served with butter and a side of bread. Imagine your student days, where you don’t have a butter knife, so are forced into serving a whole block of butter with your bread; It certainly beats the poxy cube you receive with your toasted tea cake on a traditional coffee morning. Anyway, back to the food. I was so ready for this, and nothing was going to stop me from enjoying it. It was like something my nan had cooked, so amazingly homely, comforting and of superb quality. For an opening night, Hanlons really have set the bar high, good luck chaps, lets hope you keep this up for the foreseeable future.IMG_2537

And coming away with some Hanlons goodies really topped the night off.

Elston’s Beer Blog.

And so it all began about 10 years ago when I made a personal discovery, O’hanlons Yellow Hammer.  What a beer!  It got me hooked, every time I went to Tesco I’d always pick up a bottle or four.  But really it began as O’hanlons were a customer of mine and I was intrigued by their brew.

I grew up like every other youth, a lager lout.  Fosters, smelly Carlsberg and some other XXXX.  John Smiths was sampled but flat and heavy spring to mind, Boddies was the same, step in O’hanlons.

Yellow Hammer, where do we start? Draught; amazing colour, odour and drinkability.  Watching it settle like a good Caffreys was immense.  It was like drinking Dandelion Burdock as a child but an adult version.  I couldn’t help but want for more!  I’d never embarrass myself, but you know how some pregnant women crave liquorice……Yellow hammer was mine.  Such a smooth and refreshing brew had never been tasted. Dangerous though, as too many would have it’s consequences!!!!

I became very acquainted with Yellow Hammer, never thought it bottled would end.  But times change, and draught became my only rare glimpse of the Hammer.  O’hanlons had been through some changes and bottles were obsolete.  I’d chase the draught until it too was rare.  I hate the word, but my ‘mission’ was to find a beer to equal, or even better Yellow Hammer.

And so it began, another word I hate, my beer ‘journey’.