The Year Of Change

Having one of those days where I’m meant to be doing deliveries but pottering about and trying to get organised and motivated to chuck casks on the van! (Sorry for my lateness today pubs!).

According to the stats for this website my post back in January about changing things here and downsizing was the most read ever.  So it feels like time for an update while I avoid doing what I’m meant to be!  The dinky brewery kit and I have had some problems – flooding and beers not tasting how I want them to – but we seem to have turned the corner; I bottled some Quirky Kiwi end of last week and I think it’s one of the best beers I’ve ever made so if you’ve got one of the few casks enjoy it!

The bar and bottle shop on site are looking great (thanks to David for the tons of hours he’s put in here) and we’ve a loyal regular following plus people who are gradually finding us.  There’s still work to be done to better prepare the place for the winter but hopefully without too much interruption.  Trying to get more Offbeat beers bottled and we are now stocking a great selection of hand picked bottles and cans – the ‘tried and tested’ approach is one of the perks of the job!

The gins and food are really taking off too – looking forward to our gin menu launch at the next #FirstyFriday on 7th October.  #FirstyFriday still draws a huge crowd…quite why so many people love coming to drink beer in a car park in Crewe has yet to be figured out but it’s always my favourite day of the month.  There’s always cask beer on at #FirstyFriday but on our other Thursday and Friday bar openings we tend to be more keg.  We’re finding the majority don’t mind, they’re happy to taste great beers regardless of what container it comes in and if the brewer has kegged it you can be assured that they think it works that way.  You can pick up one of our menus to take away with the details of what we’ve got and what’s going on any time.

We’ve (Otherton Ales and Offbeat) had a number of bookings with the mobile bars which have been great; after 7 years running a pub I still love working behind a bar!   Most seem to be repeat bookings that are looking forward to having us back year on year which is a huge compliment and a sign we’re getting it right.

I’m really excited about the Berries, Beans & Beer project – it seems to be something other people are excited about and want to talk about too.  Working with a great team of friends to make it happen makes it a lot of fun and there’s a load of crazy, creative ideas flying about.  I’m flattered that other people are getting in touch to ask how they can get involved too, that they already perceive this as a great event.  Having some brilliant associates like Rodney Densem, Steep Soda and Hogan’s Cider will make this an unmissable event plus for the foodies we’re working with our food truck catering people to get some crossover things going with the food and drink.

From a personal point of view I’ve finally got my insulin pump so hoping a lot of the crippling exhaustion from blood sugar levels bouncing about will gradually settle and ease and I’ll start having a bit more energy and better sleep.

I’m not really an arrogant person, if anything low self confidence plagues me at times, so I’m truly humbled by the support from business and drinking customers alike over the few years I’ve been here in Crewe as Offbeat.  I’ll keep doing what I do and hoping you love it!

Michelle x


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