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Welcome Welcome to the Autumn 2017 edition of the CRQ. We always love putting together this quarterly magazine. It gives us a regular opportunity to tell you all about the exciting events, breathtaking beers, and the fabulous food offerings that are found in and around our pubs. I’ve been able to get out to many of our pub events this summer, and it’s been great to see so many of you enjoying the sunshine. It’s been a busy time in other respects too, as we continue to celebrate our 40th Anniversary Year! Not least because this quarter we can announce the addition of two new pub sites. The Fox & Grapes in Sneinton is the most recent addition and opened in early September. Nestled in the heart of Nottingham’s Creative Quarter, it’s the ideal location to pause for thought and seek inspiration. It’s also just a stone’s throw from the Motorpoint Arena…perhaps we’ll see a few famous faces in the years to come! Secondly, the news of a very special venture was announced shortly before I wrote this. We’ve formed a partnership with CGC Events and the Theatre Royal & Concert Hall, to operate the entire food and beverage offering at this historic location. Castle Rock will proudly be running Yarn, a new bar at the Theatre, following a substantial investment for improved facilities over the recent months. Yarn opens in November so, as you read this, it may be ready and waiting! The bar is open throughout the day and evenings serving everything you’d expect: cask and craft beer, breakfast, lunch, evening meals and snacks. It’s not just for theatre goers – everyone is welcome! One of the things that gives me most pleasure in my role is seeing our young people come through our business and develop their careers in the hospitality industry. It puts the icing on the cake when we see full-timers become assistant managers and the latter appointed to senior management positions. Adding pubs to our estate can sometimes put a strain on our people resources, but I’m in absolute wonder over how the Castle Rock family has stepped up to the plate over the last few months. There have been many very well-deserved promotions; congratulations to you all. With your hard work, you have earned these opportunities. I’m looking forward to watching you all flourish, and am sure I will continue to be impressed. To all our customers: thank you for your continued support. I hope you visit our two new pubs soon, if you haven’t done already, and enjoying meeting our new managers and their teams. Cheers

Colin Wilde Managing Director @SheriffTipple

Queensbridge Road, Nottingham NG2 1NB

Telephone: 0115 985 1615

General enquiries: Sales enquiries: Recruitment:

CRQ is edited by Liv Auckland and designed & produced by freerbutler limited •


Castle Rock Pubs

Introducing the Fox & Grapes, our new pub in Sneinton Market, Nottingham The Fox & Grapes has been acquired by Castle Rock through the Beer Consortium Ltd., the same EIS company behind the Embankment, the Horse and Plough and the Cricketers Rest. We caught sight of the little beauty sitting humbly on the corner of Southwell Road and decided we could offer it a future. It was no easy feat, with the pub located on the edge of the Nottingham City Centre Saturation Zone, meaning a sensitive application and significant negotiations were required with the relevant authorities. Somehow, we managed to keep this one under-wraps from the publican chit-chat until official announcements were made. Located in Sneinton Market, which is now part of Nottingham’s creative district The Creative Quarter, the Fox & Grapes’ neighbours include independent shops, cafes and art studios. On the square, markets and events are regularly held, including an open-air cinema. The Fox & Grapes is also just a short stroll from the Motorpoint Arena, so you’ve got yourself an ideal pub for drinks and


food before or after your night’s entertainment (or during, for those parents or other halves on taxi duty). In early August, we held a ‘name the pub’ poll with the help of the Nottingham Post. Most recently named Peggers Inn, the pub was also locally known as “Pretty Windows” due to the etched glass windows that used to decorate the building on three sides. Under its original name, the Fox & Grapes, the pub would open early to serve the workers and customers of the wholesale fruit and vegetable market (it held a Market & Fairs licence). Architectural sculptures, including emblems of a fox surrounded by grapevines, can still be seen on the exterior of the building. While we’re on the subject, there’s also an emblem of Dionysus, the god of the grape harvest, ritual madness and religious ecstasy, among other hedonistic pastimes. Make of that what you will...

So, with three great names to choose from, all with their own unique history, it was only right that the people of Nottingham made the call. A fourth option on the poll for alternative name suggestions led to ‘Pubby McPubface’ becoming a runner up… an impressive performance there, folks. But taking the lead was the Fox & Grapes, returning this lovely historical pub back to its original name. In September, after the speediest refurbishment in our memory, the team at the Fox & Grapes welcomed their first customers. Pub openings are always exciting, electric events. The air is filled with anticipation, doubled by a lack of sleep and too much caffeine. But you blink, and suddenly the place is packed with people. That night we were lucky enough to see the Fox & Grapes full of friends, family, colleagues, local business folk and dedicated customers. We even had a visit from BBC East Midlands Today, who streamed live from the pub on their evening show. Manager Danny Semak, former assistant manager at the Lincolnshire Poacher, said the night was ‘superb’ and thanked everyone who came down to show their support. As you read this, the pub is already in full swing. On the bar, you’ll find eight cask beers including three from Castle Rock alongside guest ales from near and far, as

well as a great selection of craft in keg, bottle and can, continental lagers, fine wines, spirits and a wonderful variety of gins. The Fox’s food menu offers a unique take on simple dishes, with a range of 9” pizzas all under £8, while the modest baked potato is switched up a notch with toppings like ricotta, cherry tomato and spring onion. You can enjoy a selection of Danish pastries for breakfast, snack on pickled walnuts, fresh platters, and a charcuterie board (to name a few), and for pudding there’s strawberry and vanilla frozen mousse. It’s a particularly good spot for vegan and gluten free diners to enjoy a bite. If you haven’t been yet, pop over to see Danny and his team, and be sure to follow the Fox & Grapes social media feeds to stay up to date. As always, send us any suggestions or feedback you may have. One final thing: We knew the Fox & Grapes was a very popular pub in its day, but the response and support from the people have Nottingham has been staggering. Thank you from all of us, we couldn’t do any of this without you. Let’s give this beloved Nottingham pub the future it deserves!



Autumn is here and it’s time for the biggest event in a Nottinghamian’s calendar: the Robin Hood Beer & Cider Festival.

11th-14th October 2017 It’s time to brush down your boots for another excellent beer festival at Nottingham Castle. This year marks Nottingham CAMRA’s 42nd year and, as the city prepares for a £30 million rejuvenation of the castle, it’s the last until at least 2019 in the grounds. Yup, times are changing, and Nottingham CAMRA has announced that, depending on the speed of work at the Castle, it may not return to the beloved historic grounds for one to two years. Next Autumn will see the festival take place on the Forest Recreation ground so, for now, let’s enjoy the last RHBCF of this era! Robin Hood Beer & Cider Festival continues to get better and better as we go on, with more and more brewers, cider makers, food venders and memorabilia makers every year. Tickets continue to sell-out, with the weekend nights and Saturday day unsurprisingly being the most in demand. Those successful at nabbing themselves a ticket in the last few years are sure to remember the buzz in the top tent, where thirsty festival goers find themselves surrounded by


row upon row of beer. While in “the village” near the band stand, the atmosphere is unlike anywhere else; a colourful celebration of live music, street food, and the dancing crowds of happy punters. Here you’ll once again find the Castle Rock Tavern, our indoor-outdoor bar which is both spacious and cosy, often filled with twinkly lights and featuring a live Twitter wall, and a great place to gather your comrades for a sit down. On the bar this year we’ll have a showcase of special and seasonal Castle Rock beers, including our new 2.0 range. In the main marquee, you’ll find some Castle Rock classics. Come say hi, chat to our staff, give them a pat on the back for their hard work, and enjoy! Happy 42nd year to CAMRA, and happy RHBCF17 to one and all!


OUR AUTUMN COLLECTIONS The nights are drawing in, so grab yourself a drink and enjoy a quick runthrough of Castle Rock beers for Autumn 2017. We’ve got the bases covered: three seasonal favourites are back, plus a new Nottinghamian for fans of red ale.


4.4% ABV October

A special brew for the Hallowe’en season. Most Haunted is a quaffable porter brewed with pumpkin and a blend of spices. Black in colour, there’s fresh hop and pumpkin spice on the nose, and subtle bittersweet spice on the palette. Balanced and smooth with a hint of chocolate. See: Black Smell: Fresh hop, pumpkin spice Taste: Subtle spice, bittersweet Hops: Admiral, Kohatu, Hallertau Northern Brewer, Goldings Bitterness 3 | Sweetness 3 Pair with: Hunker down and pair it with a winter stew.


5.5% ABV October 2017 - March 2018

Screech Owl’s moody cousin. This classic black IPA returns for 2017: Upfront US hop character combines with a hint of caramel for a rich ale that packs a punch. Always an early sell-out at the Robin Hood Beer & Cider Festival.. See: Dark ruby Smell: Caramel, fresh citrus Taste: Fresh, hoppy, complex Hops: Cascade, Centennial Bitterness 4 | Sweetness 3 Pair with: Pair it with BBQ Ribs for optimum chilly weather feasting.


4.4% ABV November 2017 - February 2018

We’ll repeat it again… pale ales aren’t just for summer! We brew Snowhite between November and February every year, and it always goes down a treat. Snowhite is our icy queen, a very pale beer brewed with both UK and Slovenian hops. Floral and citrus aromas, a soft, clean, crisp mouthfeel. Very drinkable with a refreshing drop. See: Very pale Smell: Floral, citrus Taste: Soft, clean, crisp, fresh Hops: Aurora, Bobek, Cascade Bitterness 3 | Sweetness 3 Pair with: Keep it subtle and pair Snowhite with chicken salad or white fish.

HILARY SILVESTER 4.2% ABV October 2017 - December 2017 We’re really excited to release Hilary Silvester’s namesake brew to the people of Nottingham and beyond. Hilary is the vice-chair at the Nottingham Civic Society, and has worked tirelessly for many years with the goal of not just preserving Nottingham’s architecture, but campaigning for many things including sustainability, quality of life and Nottingham’s heritage. Hilary was instrumental in helping the Embankment achieve Grade II Listed status and this beer is not only a celebration of her, but a celebration of all things Nottingham! It’s not just the person on the beer that’s special though – the beer itself is going to be quite interesting. We’re using NZ hop Wai-iti and pelletised Cascade lupulin powder late on in the brew of this red ale, meaning Hilary’s namesake beer will have lots of upfront grapefruit/lemon/general lovely zesty aromas, as well as a backdrop of subtle soft stone fruit. There’s a lovely irony in using a modern hopping technique in a beer that celebrates our heritage! See: Deep red Smell: Roasted malt, zesty, citrus Taste: Subtle fruit, juicy citrus, malty Hops: Wai-iti Bitterness 4 | Sweetness 3 Pair with: Bangers and mash, roasted root veg or a Crème Brûlée


Castle Rock pubs

YARN A new bar for Nottingham’s Theatre Royal and Royal Concert Hall We are delighted to confirm that we have teamed up with CGC Event Caterers to run a brand-new bar at the Theatre Royal & Royal Concert Hall. The bar is aptly named Yarn, to reflect not only Nottingham’s craft and textile heritage, but also the process of playwriting (and of course all types of creative writing) and the dramatic narratives that will grace the stage at the theatre. We were sworn to secrecy about this venture for a long time, but now we’re able to fill you in on how we got here, and where we’re headed… Firstly, we should introduce our partners in this exciting endeavour! Leeds-based CGC Event Caterers have a history dating back to 1896, with a reputation for great food, attentive service, and craftsmanship. Looking for a Nottingham team to take on the bars and restaurants at the theatre, they approached Castle Rock in the hopes of combining their expertise with ours. There were many meetings and discussions of course, but as you can see we happily threw ourselves into the partnership. We’re still getting to know our colleagues at CGC and at the theatre and concert hall, and all three threads (yarns, you might say) are working together to bring a really excellent new bar to the city centre.

Manager of Yarn, Charlie Blomeley, says: ‘Although Yarn is a Castle Rock pub and will operate outside of the theatre and concert hall show times, we will be working closely with CGC and the theatre to ensure our ever-changing offering complements the shows and plays, for theatre customers as well as the general public.’ Following summer-long closure and transformation, the former ‘Green Room’ is becoming Yarn, a refurbished bar area in the stalls level of the theatre, offering casual dining alongside a top-notch beer offering. We’ll be open from morning to night, for theatre-goers, shoppers, passers-by, tourists, students, and especially our dear Nottingham folk in search of a thirst-quencher. The drinks offering is still in the works as we write this, but our love of beer will obviously be an essential part of the fabric (we’ll never tire of these puns) of Yarn. Alongside cask and craft keg beer from near and far, we’re keen to showcase an extensive wine, gin, whisky and rum selection, and are hoping there will be room for real cider, too. For food, Charlie says it’s about social dining. Expect European brunches, sharing plates, handrolled pizzas and tapas, with vegan and gluten free diets catered for. We’re hoping to run a tapas and wine night in the future, but right now the future is a little unknown! Yarn is set to open in early November, so it may already be open as you read this! Head over to for the latest.



Castle Rock Beers

CASTLE ROCK 2.0 OUR EPIC ADVENTURE CONTINUES In the final few months of 2017, it’s time for a brief reflection followed by our announcement of next year’s beers! The 2.0 beers have been lots of fun, but an obstacle course too - punctuated by misconceptions, preconceptions and us trying to tell people what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. A 2012 episode of 30 Rock, now a rather popular meme, comes to mind here. The scene shows Steve Buscemi playing a middle-aged private detective who believes he is successfully masquerading as a high-school student. He has his cap turned backwards, a skateboard draped over his shoulder and a rip off t-shirt that says “Music ⚡ Band” instead of “AC ⚡ DC”. “How do you do, fellow kids?” he says. We know a lot of beer fans are tired of some brewers’ reactions to craft beer, and that’s why we’ve mentioned this scene. We know it can be a bit cringeworthy when you see some brewers jumping on the bandwagon, usually using misguided hipster tropes, because apparently if you like craft beer you’ve definitely got a beard and a flat cap. Well it’s kind of different at Castle Rock. As soon as talks began, it was important we did not try to be pretentious. It was about acknowledging our limitations, challenging them, overcoming them and doing something interesting, with integrity. 2017 has seen three special beers brewed. A Session IPA, Wheat beer and Pilsner. Initially, it was just about testing our brew kit and how much it can take in terms of late hopping, but also trialling some new yeast and new processes along the way. We’ve developed a solid foundation and are excited to expand from that and brew some more exciting beers, but with a distinct Castle Rock-ness. Session IPA was about tweaking our water profile and seeing how our brewery would cope with dry hopping. (Incidentally, Microsoft Word just autocorrected dry hopping to dry hoping; equally correct). A soft water profile and about 1.1kg Simcoe and Ahtanum hops per barrel has given


this beer great drinkability and we’re delighted with the results. Wheat was about combining the traditional Wheat style with more juicy dry hopping. We got our hands on some Citra and Sorachi Ace (the marmite of hops) and the result was almost Piña colada like with a classic wheat sensibility. Pilsner was about creating something as authentic as possible; cold conditioning with our own house yeast, extended residence in the hop back, extended cold conditioning time and classic German hop varieties. All of these beers will continue to be brewed for the remainder of 2017 to keep up with demand.

2018 Next year we’ve got three brand new recipes. We’re doing a Session IPA v2 with a great cocktail of hops including Ekuanot, Citra and Mosaic. We’re also hoping to use pelletised lupulin powder if our trials go well. Second up is an IPA with a triad of awesome NZ hops (Motueka, Waimea, Nelson Sauvin), and finally a summer pudding beer with experimental UK hops and lots of seasonal summer berries. As with this year, all of these brews will be available in cask AND keg and isinglass won’t come near them, so they’ll be vegan friendly and naturally hazy. We hope you’ll join us for a drink and continue to feed back your thoughts on these new beers. There’s something really special about being able to get stuck in with modern brewing but also do our best in championing classic styles like Sheriff’s Tipple and Harvest Pale. This is just the start of a long journey with many challenges ahead. We just hope these beers have demonstrated that you can be a traditional brewer and get properly involved with modern brewing too.

See you in 2018!

Session IPA now available in can


Discover World Beers

DWB TOP PICKS @DiscoverWBeers Follow us to stay in the loop with offers, events and news Discover World Beers buyer Wayne Harvey shares his top picks of beers available in Castle Rock pubs this autumn. Brauerei Heller - Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier • 4.3% Schlenkerla Helles is a traditional lager brewed in the Bavarian city of Bamberg. Using local hops and aged in caves underneath the brewery, it retains a character that is unique to this famous brewing region. This Helles is distinctive in that it has a slightly smoky flavour. This comes from being brewed using the same equipment as Rauchbier (an intensely smoked beer, often remarked as ‘bacon beer’) and being fermented with the same yeast. It is a bright, effervescent beer that fizzes on the tongue. It pairs well with burgers or sausages as the carbonation cuts through the fat and the hint of smoke complements the flavour of the meat.

Firestone Walker - Pale 31 • 4.9% Firestone Walker are craft beer stalwarts. Based on the Californian coast they have brewed Pale 31 as an ode to their home state. Pale 31 pours a bright, honey gold colour with aromas that resemble orange and pine. It’s an approachable American Pale Ale, and while it certainly isn’t a hop bomb, it is a finely tuned beer. A little malt sweetness is rounded out by a fair amount of bitterness which creates the impression of a balanced, well-crafted pale ale.


Black Iris - Divine Elements • 6% Black Iris has finally canned some beer! Our pals in Basford have picked this Mosaic IPA to put into can and it is a very good effort indeed. Pours hazy, which is very much in vogue right now with the proliferation of New England style IPAs. Oats in the malt grist create a soft and full mouthfeel. Mosaic is a tricky hop, it often exhibits savoury flavours such as onion or garlic but can also present itself as blueberry or tropical fruit. It seems to be the latter here. Big tropical fruit aromas and much the same in terms of flavour. All in all a great IPA that deserves to have its praises sung. Brauerei Aying - Ayinger Celebrator • 6.7% Aying is a town just outside Munich in Bavaria, like many towns and cities in the region they have a muchcelebrated beer culture with a real focus on tradition and that is exemplified in this beer. Celebrator is a Dopplebock – an oldfashioned, malty, strong lager. It’s designed to be consumed on special occasions, traditionally at religious feasts. This example is very dark, similar in colour to a Porter although it has a much higher amount of carbonation. Flavours of chocolate, dried fruit and a little smoke are followed by a surprisingly dry finish. Celebrator is currently the highest rated Dopplebock on so you will be hard pressed to find a better example of this style.

Real Cider

TOP PICKS FOR AUTUMN Cider Guru Rachel Hopwell is back with her top picks of cider and perry for October-December 2017. October is CAMRA Cider and Perry month, so enjoy a pint, a half or a taster tray in our pubs to celebrate. Hi folks! Me again. As the nights get darker and we turn our minds to woolly jumpers and log fires, let’s take a look at few options to get you in the winter mood... Bottle Kicking - Scrummage 6.5% Bottle Kicking is behind some of the best ciders out there. They are based in the quintessential Leicestershire village of Hallaton, which is home to – you guessed it – bottle kicking! Scrummage is made using handpicked Leicestershire apples which are naturally more acidic, giving an edge to the taste with sharpness lingering on the palate.

Cornish Orchards Wassail Mulled Cider 4.0% This might just replace my usual Christmas Eve tipple! A festive fusion of cider and apple juice, infused with oranges and spices. To be enjoyed warm and ideally in front of a roaring fire. Heck, why not chuck in a cinnamon stick too?

Gwynt y Ddraig - Two Trees Perry 4.5% Two Trees Perry (crowned 2015 Champion Perry of the year by the way) is a traditionally made pale perry, fruity in taste with a hint of honey on the tongue. At just 4.5%, it’s a good gateway option for those intrigued by the world of real cider and perry.

Stop Press...

Follow me on Twitter and Facebook for updates of what is going on in the world of cider in and around the Castle Rock Pubs. @CiderGuruCRB

PREMIER LEAGUE TROPHY COMES TO THE WILLOWBROOK The most prized possession in English football came to the Willowbrook in Gedling for one night only. It’s been nearly forty years since Nottingham Forest won the title, so we were thrilled to welcome the trophy back to Nottingham. For a few hours, the Willowbrook was home for the Premier League trophy and generations of football fans were able to see it up-close and personal! The trophy itself was created by Royal Jewellers Asprey of London, and is topped with a golden crown, while the main body is made from sterling silver and silver gilt. It weighs just under four stone…about the same as some of the younger football fans who stopped by! Vicki Saxby, Castle Rock’s operations director, is pictured with the trophy.


The Goings On BEESTON HOCKEY CLUB AND CASTLE ROCK - A WINNING PARTNERSHIP We’re pleased to announce our sponsorship of Beeston Hockey Club continues! The club has been successful for countless years in both indoor and outdoor formats. In announcing a groundbreaking international partnership with HC Rotterdam in Holland and signing countless Olympic athletes, the club is moving forward towards continued success and we are delighted to be part of that journey. You can find Harvest Pale on the bar at the Stick & Pitcher, as well as some Castle Rock guests and specials throughout the year.

CRICKET GRIPS CASTLE ROCK On the evening before England took on South Africa at Trent Bridge, a swarm of local cricket fans headed to the Poppy and Pint. The official launch of our 28th Nottinghamian beer, Stuart Broad, took place on Thursday 13th July. East Midlands Today rocked up for a live TV broadcast with Gemma Broad, Stuart’s sister and founder of ‘The Broad Appeal’, on hand. Castle Rock was delighted to support their charity with sales of the Stuart Broad ale. Following an exciting evening for the current England cricket star, former England batsman Derek Randall took over the Poppy and Pint for a night of storytelling and Q&A. The noise was deafening with laughter as “Arkle” presented some highlights from his stellar career. Derek was born in Retford, North Nottinghamshire, and ensured the sold-out crowd was treated to a brilliant evening. We are also pleased to announce that over £1000 was raised for The Broad Appeal charity. Following the events of Thursday, Friday saw Trent Bridge hosting a test match, which meant that our pubs were full to the rafters. We’d like to thank you all for your support before, during and after the match. Pictured right (From L-R) James Halfpenny, manager at the Poppy and Pint, Geoff Newton chairman and sales director at Castle Rock Brewery, Gemma Broad, co-founder of the Broad Appeal and Derek Randall, former England batsman.


A BREAD AND BITTER LOVE STORY Over the years, we’ve had a few romances brew between Castle Rock customers and, dare we admit it, between staff too! We love hearing stories about how beer and pubs have brought people together. On September 8th, 2016, Mat and Laura met in their local pub, the Bread and Bitter, and chatted away together until closing time. They’ve been an item ever since, and this August Mat proposed at the very same table. As you can tell by these two happy faces, and the bling of course, Laura accepted! Our biggest congratulations to the both of you! And to singletons out there looking for love, apparently your Castle Rock local is the place to find it…

CRICKETERS REST CELEBRATES A BIG BIRTHDAY With all this talk of new pubs in this edition of the CRQ, it is time we mention that the Cricketers Rest in Kimberley recently celebrated its first birthday. This charming pub is tucked away in Kimberley, a former heartland of Nottinghamshire’s brewing industry. While the town’s brewery is being turned into housing, the Cricketers Rest aims to keep the spirit of Kimberley’s heritage alive. It’s been a great first year for the pub and we were thrilled to have customers there to celebrate with us. Here’s to many more years! If you haven’t been to the Cricketers yet, make sure to add it to your list of must-visits this Autumn. Pictured above with the birthday cake are (from left) Mick Simpson, Dale Taylor, Giles Cooke, Deke Hardman, Lianne Meek. Photo is by Joe Donze.

Customer Feature



Meet our Castle Rock dogs! We’re proud to be a dog-friendly pub group. In the last edition of the Castle Rock Quarter, we introduced to a few dogs who regularly frequent their Castle Rock locals (with owners in tow). This Autumn we wanted to bring you more…

MEET YODA & SKYE We had the pleasure of meeting up with the Freemans and their furry kids Yoda and Skye. The family are regulars at the Vat and Fiddle, our brewery tap, and were enjoying the pub’s new beer garden on their visit. Drink/s of choice: Preservation and Elsie Mo Favourite Castle Rock pub: The Vat and Fiddle. We love the food and real ale, plus we get to bring our (human) four-year-old with us, too. It means no-one gets left behind, and we’re always welcomed warmly. The dogs get a lovely reception – lots of strokes and cuddles! Tell us about your pub dogs: Yoda is a black Labrador crossed with a Rottweiler. He’s four, and we’ve always brought him to the pub because he’s such a social boy. He loves people. Skye is a Leonberger puppy, she’s only nine months old. We bring her along too so she gets used to being around people. She’s a fan of Harvest Pale!

Remember to share pictures of your Castle Rock pooch using #CastleRockDogs Thank you so much to everyone who got in touch about Wo/Man’s Best Friend! The response was so overwhelming that this is the second of many editions of CRQ to feature our four legged friends! If you’d like to tell us more about you, your dog and your Castle Rock local, drop an email with some photos to


If you are reading this, it means Christmas is right around the corner and the festivities are just about getting into full swing. Whether you’re giddily dressing up in a reindeer jumper every day (since like… September) or scrooging your way through the festivities, there’s no denying that Christmas is one of the best times of year. If nothing else, you get some time off work to eat, drink and be merry. So what can you enjoy before 2018 rolls around and we start all over again with the new year’s resolutions? Each of our pubs are unique which means you have many different Christmas options with Castle Rock. You’ll find something for every family member to enjoy, from the kids Christmas party at the Golden Eagle (where there will be a visit from Father Christmas), to the seventies disco party accompanied with a three-course meal at the Horse and Plough. Now for the best part: the food! Castle Rock pubs are once again offering delicious Christmas menus. The Horse and Plough and the Embankment are both open for dining on Christmas Day. Booking is essential, so visit our website for a booking form or give your chosen one a call. The festivities don’t just stop at Christmas (though there is that weird gap in the middle where nobody really knows what’s going on – anyone know what that’s about? Send thoughts to with the subject “I think I know”). The Auld-Lang-Syne shouting, stranger hugging, midnight kissing joy of New Year’s Eve is also upon us. To find out what’s what, visit


TAKE YOUR BEER HOME As much as you might love to, you probably can’t spend the whole festive season in the pub. So, on the days family duty calls, why not enjoy your favourite Castle Rock tipple from the comfort of your own home? Our beer is pulled fresh from the cask and dispensed into a ‘bag in box’, so it’s just as great and east to pour. Take your pick from Sheriff’s Tipple, Black Gold, Harvest Pale, Preservation, Elsie Mo and Screech Owl, starting from £16 for 5L. For more details and prices visit Beer boxes are available for pre-order from Castle Rock pubs. For the biggest range call the Vat and Fiddle on 0115 985 0611.

GIFT PACKS Castle Rock gift packs are the perfect stocking filler for any beer lover. Take your pick of either bottles of Harvest Pale and Elsie Mo, and pair them with a Castle Rock or a Harvest Pale glass, and create a tailored made gift pack! Only £8.95 from your local Castle Rock pub!

MERCHANDISE T-SHIRTS. POLOS. BASEBALL HATS. BEANIE HATS. RUGBY SHIRTS. HOODIES. Our merchandise range continues to grow each year, with this year’s new edition of the baseball hats. You can pre-order merchandise from any of our pubs. We’d recommend one of our two-tone hoodies – the perfect Christmas gift. To find our more information visit to view the latest catalogue.

TOURS Tours start from £12 per person, which includes sampling of Castle Rock beer and a photo of you pouring a pint behind the bar. To find out more information call the Vat and Fiddle on 0115 985 0611

Really, is there much better in life than hanging out in a brewery with your friends and family? No matter the occasion, brewery tours are a fun and informative way to see first-hand how your favourite Castle Rock Beer is made.

Christmas & New Year Opening Hours PUBS

Christmas Eve

Christmas Day

Boxing Day

New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Day

Bread and Bitter

O: C:

11.00am Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

10.00am 11.00pm

11.00am 1.00am*

Midday 3.00pm


O: C:

11.00am 5.00pm



11.00am 7.00pm


Cricketers Rest

O: C:

Midday Midnight

11.00am 3.00pm

Midday Midnight

Midday 1.00am

Midday Midnight

The Embankment

O: C:

10.00am Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

10.00am 11.00pm

10.00am Late*

10.00am 11.00pm

The Fox and Crown

O: C:

10.30am Midnight

11.00am 2.00pm

10.30am 11.00pm

10.30am Late

Midday 11.00pm

Fox & Grapes

O: C:

11.00am Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

Midday 11.00pm

11.00am Midnight

Midday 10.00pm

Golden Eagle

O: C:

11.00am 11.00pm

Midday 2.00pm

11.00am 11.00pm

11.00am Late

11.00am 11.00pm

Horse and Plough

O: C:

11.00am 1.00am

Midday 3.00pm

11.00am 9.00pm

11.00am Late

10.00am 10.30pm

Kean’s Head

O: C:

11.00am 5.00pm



Midday 10.30pm


Lincolnshire Poacher

O: C:

Midday Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

2.00pm 8.00pm

Midday 2.00am

2.00pm 8.00pm

Poppy and Pint

O: C:

10.30am 11.30pm

Midday 3.00pm

Midday 11.00pm

9.30am 1.00am**

Midday 11.00pm

Stratford Haven

O: C:

10.00am Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

10.00am 11.00pm

10.00am 1.00am

Midday 11.00pm

Swan In The Rushes

O: C:

Midday 10.00pm

Midday 2.00pm

Midday 10.00pm

Midday Late

Midday 10.00pm

Vat and Fiddle

O: C:

11.00am Midnight

11.30am 2.30pm

11.00am 11.00pm

11.00am 12.30am

11.00am 10.00pm


O: C:

10.00am Midnight

Midday 3.00pm

Midday 11.00pm

10.00am Late

Midday 11.00pm

* Ticketed event from 7.00pm ** Ticketed event from 6.00pm


Castle Rock Food

A VEGAN MIXER NIGHT AT THE PLOUGH The Horse and Plough, a vegan-friendly pub for many months now, held an inaugural vegan mixer night. Manager Dan Brown gives the run down on a fun (and delicious) evening with the local vegan community. We’ve been working hard at the Horse and Plough for a while now to develop a strong vegan offering, after realising there was a lack of options locally for vegans. We started by offering a full vegan menu; not alterations to our standard menu but meals designed specifically for vegan customers.

There was a real demand for the menu and, as things developed, we decided we could be more adventurous with our vegan dishes, as well as bring them in line with the style of cuisine we offer on our regular menus. While getting to know the local vegan community on Facebook, I discovered that there were few opportunities for these like-minded individuals to get together and enjoy a fancy meal. This lead us to the vegan mixer night, where we could try out some new, fancier dishes and bring everyone together. We confirmed some live music, and created a menu which included a couple of gluten free options also, to be all-encompassing. The spaces filled up quickly. Plus, many more people wanted to come along to the vegan mixer but were unable to make the date. It gave us confidence in the concept. The day came, Matty Haynes set up his gear for the chilled live music to be played throughout, and people started to arrive. The meals seemed to go down very well, with the Mango Gazpacho starter being a real hit to kick things off. The favoured main dish appeared to be the Thai Pineapple fried rice, which we served with Tempeh in a half pineapple shell. The star of the desserts had to be the indulgent strawberry shake, which was topped with Oreo biscuits and doughnuts.


The reviews we had from all were fantastic and many want another night soon, which we’ll certainly be doing. Our head chef found the whole event an eye-opening experience. He learned that he could certainly do high-end, restaurant quality vegan meals and make them look fantastic!

The next vegan mixer night is just around the corner, so watch this space for more info! Join the ‘Horse and Plough Nottingham Vegans’ Facebook group to keep up to date with all things vegan at the Plough.

We have incorporated some of the meals onto our standard vegan menu, including the pineapple fried rice, sweet and sour aubergines and the beetroot hummus. Our pub staple chocolate brownie is also 100% vegan.


Upcoming Events

WHAT’S ON FOR AUTUMN Check out what’s happening in our pubs from October to December and get into the flow of 2017. Full listings can be found at

October CAMRA CIDER & PERRY MONTH Sunday 1st - Tuesday 31st October @ Canalhouse | Fox and Crown Golden Eagle | Horse and Plough Kean’s Head |Lincolnshire Poacher Poppy and Pint | Stratford Haven The Embankment | The Swan in the Rushes Throughout October Castle Rock is celebrating all things apple and pear. The Canalhouse will be upping its range of cider and perry to 15 and offering discounts on taster trays. Pubs such as the Embankment, the Fox and Crown and the Lincolnshire Poacher will be all extending their ranges to more than 10 varieties. The Horse and Plough and the Swan in the Rushes will be giving discounts on cider, with the Golden Eagle and Stratford Haven constantly rotating their selections to provide something new for you. The Kean’s Head and Poppy and Pint will both focus on local producers, as well as showcasing some of the best national ciders and perries.

PIZZA MONTH Sunday 1st - Tuesday 31st October @ Fox & Grapes The Fox & Grapes delicious 9” pizza menu is on offer for all of October in celebration of Pizza Month. Tuck into a pizza paired with a pint for £9.95. Terms and conditions may apply.

MURDER MYSTERY NIGHT Friday 6th October @ The Embankment The Embankment brings you “the Death of a Soul Man” murder mystery night! This special evening has a twist, but we’ll let you discover it for yourself! As well as live music, there will be a hot buffet dinner and a drink on arrival. Tickets cost £25 and are selling out fast! Call the Embankment on 0115 986 4502 or email to book yours.




Friday 6th - Sunday 22nd October @ Bread and Bitter | Canalhouse The Embankment | Fox & Grapes Kean’s Head | Lincolnshire Poacher Poppy and Pint | Stratford Haven Vat and Fiddle | Willowbrook Enveloping our beloved Robin Hood Beer & Cider Festival, the FFF is about celebrating Nottingham’s great food and drink pubs. There is plenty going on during the two weeks, from discounts for festival-goers to lots of special dishes cooked using beer and cider. Full the full round-up, go to

Friday 27th - Tuesday 31st October @ Fox & Grapes | Poppy and Pint The Embankment | The Swan in the Rushes | Willowbrook Time to dust off the costumes and find the fake blood for Hallowe’en with Castle Rock. On Friday 27th, the Embankment is hosting a family friendly party which includes free goodie bags, spooky grub and a prize for the best-dressed kid. The Willowbrook throws a gruesome party on Saturday 28th and the Swan in the Rushes is hosting a themed quiz the night of the 30th, while Nottingham residents can test their slimy brain power at the Poppy and Pint’s quiz on 31st. The Fox & Grapes is offering 10% off all cask ale from 7pm on Hallowe’en, and is very much in support of fancy dress. And there’s plenty more going on… head to over to for the full round-up.

NATIONAL CURRY WEEK Monday 9th - Sunday 15th October @ Canalhouse | Horse and Plough Kean’s Head | Lincolnshire Poacher Stratford Haven | Vat and Fiddle Willowbrook A whole heap of Castle Rock pubs will be hosting events during to celebrate National Curry Week. The Vat and Fiddle and the Stratford Haven are offering a curry and a drink for £7.95, while at the Willowbrook you and a loved one can tuck into two curries, two drinks and two sides for £19.99. The Lincolnshire Poacher and the Horse and Plough are offering a curry and a drink for £8.95, the Canalhouse has three curries to choose from, all served with rice and a naan, and the Kean’s Head showcases themed food specials all week.

ROBIN HOOD BEER & CIDER FESTIVAL Wednesday 11th - Saturday 14th October One of the best events of our year at Castle Rock. A festival that sees thousands of people trudge to Nottingham Castle, ready to take the four-day celebrations by storm. If you were speedy enough to grab a ticket, come visit our Castle Rock crew and have a beer.

November WORLD VEGAN MONTH Wednesday 1st - Thursday 30th November @ Fox and Crown | Fox & Grapes Horse and Plough | Kean’s Head Stratford Haven | The Swan in the Rushes Some of our pubs already provide incredible vegan friendly food, however for the whole month of November some of them are going that extra mile. The Fox and Crown is increasing the number of vegan friendly beers on the bar to three, with the Kean’s Head, the Stratford Haven and the Swan in the Rushes offering vegan food specials and vegan friendly beer on the bar. The Horse and Plough is offering deals on both two and three course vegan meals throughout World Vegan Month. Our newest pub, the Fox & Grapes, is extending its range of vegan-friendly beers in cask, keg, bottle and can, as well as extending their already very vegan-friendly menu. And remember, you can be a carnivore and still tuck into a vegan dish!

November (continued) INTERNATIONAL STOUT DAY Thursday 2nd November @ Cricketers Rest | Fox and Crown Fox & Grapes| Golden Eagle Kean’s Head | Lincolnshire Poacher Willowbrook To celebrate International Stout Day, we’re inviting you to the dark side. The Fox and Crown and the Kean’s Head will both be stocking a wide variety of stouts in cask, keg and in the fridges. The Willowbrook, the Cricketers Rest and the Lincolnshire Poacher will be discounting their stouts, while the Golden Eagle will be beefing up its range of stouts in celebration. The Fox and Grapes is doing the same, with four stouts in cask and six stouts in keg available. Don’t forget, you can also sup on a pint of our stout Sherwood Reserve while listening to The Sound of Silence.

BRING YOUR OWN BABY COMEDY Sunday 5th November @ Poppy and Pint Bring Your Own Baby Comedy is the brain child of two comedians and, like many good

things, was developed over a glass of wine. Providing soft flooring, toys, buggy parking and baby changing facilities, your baby will feel comfortable and relaxed while you sit back and enjoy some top quality comedy. Comedy starts at 11.30am, entry is £10.

STORYTELLING AT THE BREAD Sunday 5th and Sunday 26th November @ Bread and Bitter An evening of fiction and fantasy in Mapperley. Local published authors will be reading some of their work at the pub to make your Sunday a little more special. The evenings are completely free and family friendly. Storytelling begins at 8pm!

ST ANDREW’S DAY Thursday 30th November @ Golden Eagle | Kean’s Head Celebrating the Patron Saint of Scotland, the Golden Eagle and the Kean’s Head will be offering a promotion on everyone’s favourite Scottish drink. No… not Irn Bru, scotch whisky! The Golden Eagle is offering £1 off any scotch whisky and the Kean’s Head is offering a special deal on whisky and food.

December CHRISTMAS CAROL CONCERT Sunday 24th December @ Golden Eagle A wonderful night of traditional carols, mulled wine and mince pies on Christmas Eve. The carols will be led by the local vicar and Lincoln’s mayor. A perfect way to appreciate that Christmas isn’t about gifts, but wrapping yourself up in fuzzy good feelings.

NEW YEAR’S EVE WITH CASTLE ROCK Sunday 31st December @ The Embankment | Poppy and Pint To celebrate the new year in style, your Castle Rock local will be open and ready to party. The Embankment is throwing a New Year’s Eve party, with a live band, DJ and midnight feast, with the £40 ticket including two drinks, food and a taxi voucher! The Poppy and Pint will also be throwing its traditional NYE celebrations, with live music, discounts and plenty of fun to be had. The rest of the pubs are open and their opening hours can be found a few pages back. .

Regulars MONDAY: KEAN’S HEAD: Pie and Pint Night. Pie and a pint of harvest pale for £10.95, 5pm-9pm. STRATFORD HAVEN Curry & Pint Night, just £7.95, 5-9pm. THE EMBANKMENT: Craft & Tapas Night. Two tapas dishes and a half of craft beer for just £10.

TUESDAY: BREAD AND BITTER: 2 for 1 pizzas, all homemade, 6pm-9pm. CRICKETERS REST: Quiz Night with cash and beer prizes to be won. Followed by game of lucky letters. 8pm-late. THE SWAN IN THE RUSHES: Two meals for the price of one, all day. VAT AND FIDDLE: Enjoy a curry with a drink for only £7.95, midday-8pm.

WEDNESDAY: GOLDEN EAGLE: Open mic night every other Thursday – visit the website for info. LINCOLNSHIRE POACHER: Pie Night. A pie and drink for £8.95 (5pm-9pm) followed by live music. POPPY AND PINT: Burger Night. A burger and drink for just £9.95, 5pm-9pm.

THURSDAY: CANALHOUSE: Acoustic Sessions, 6.30pm, free. STRATFORD HAVEN: Burger Night. Burger and any two toppings for £9.95, 5pm-9pm.. WILLOWBROOK: Curry Night. Curry and a drink for £10, 5pm-9pm.

SUNDAY: FOX AND CROWN: Quiz day, turn up at any point on a Sunday and you might win £25 drinks voucher. HORSE AND PLOUGH: Enjoy a homecooked Sunday Roast and a drink for only £9.95 These are just a handful of our regular events. For full listings, visit our website.


Castle Rock Tenanted pubs Alexandra Hotel

Derby Tup


Tel: 01332 293993

Tel: 01246 269835

Tel: 01205 361116

203 Siddals Road, Derby DE1 2QE

387 Sheffield Rd, Chesterfield S41 8LS

144 West Street, Boston PE21 8RE

e-mail: F: Alexandra Hotel T: @Alex_Pub_Derby

e-mail: F: The Derby Tup T: @TheDerbyTup

e-mail: F: The Eagle T: @TheEagleBoston

Forest Tavern/Maze

New Barrack Tavern


Tel: 0115 874 7792

Tel: 0114 232 4225

257 Mansfield Road, Nottingham NG1 3FT

601 Penistone Road, Sheffield S6 2GA

e-mail: web: F: The Maze T: @themazenotts themazenotts

e-mail: F: New Barrack Tavern T: @NewBarrack new_barrack_tavern

Rook and Gaskill


12 Lawrence Street, York YO10 3WP

Tel: 01904 655450

e-mail: F: The Rook and Gaskill T: @RookGaskillYork

In partnership with CGC Events and the Theatre Royal & Concert Hall

Theatre Square Nottingham NG1 5ND


123 Canal Street, Nottingham NG1 7HB Tel: 0115 952 3061

e-mail: F: The Newshouse T: @NewshouseNotts

Castle Rock Tap Room and Kitchen First Floor Departure Lounge, East Midlands Airport

Operated by Autogrill

All of our pubs follow the latest allergen legislation. Further details are available in each establishment.


Castle Rock Managed pubs Bread and Bitter


153-155 Woodthorpe Dr, Mapperley, Nottingham NG3 5JL Tel: 0115 960 7541

48-52 Canal Street, Nottingham NG1 7EH

e-mail: F: Bread Bitter T: @breadandbitter breadandbitter

Breakthroughpoint Ltd

Tel: 0115 955 5060

e-mail: F: Canal House @canalhousebar canalhousebar

Cricketers Rest 4 Chapel Street, Kimberley, Notts NG16 2NP Tel: 0115 938 3105

e-mail: F: Cricketers Rest @cricketersrest Cricketersrest

The Fox Pub and Bottle Shop Fox & Grapes

Golden Eagle

Tel: 01636 605820

Tel: 01522 521058

4-6 Appletongate, Newark, Notts NG24 1JY

21 Southwell Road, Sneinton, Nottingham, NG1 1DL

e-mail: F: The Fox Pub & Bottle Shop @TheFoxandCrown foxandcrown

Horse and Plough 25 Long Acre, Bingham, Notts NG13 8AF

Beer Consortium

Tel: 01949 839313

Beer Consortium

21 High Street, Lincoln LN5 8BD

e-mail: fox& F: Fox & Grapes @FoxandGrapesCRB FoxandGrapes_Notts

e-mail: F: The Golden Eagle Free House @goldeneagle001 goldeneaglepub

Kean’s Head

Lincolnshire Poacher

Tel: 0115 947 4052

Tel: 0115 941 1584

46 St. Mary’s Gate, Nottingham NG1 1QA

161-163 Mansfield Road, Nottingham NG1 3FR

e-mail: F: Horse and Plough @HorseandPlough horseandplough

e-mail: F: Kean’s Head @keanshead keanshead

e-mail: F: Lincolnshire Poacher @lincpoacher lincolnshirepoacher

Poppy and Pint

Stratford Haven

The Embankment

Tel: 0115 981 9995

Tel: 0115 982 5981

Tel: 0115 986 4502

The Swan in the Rushes

Vat and Fiddle (The Brewery Tap) Willowbrook

Pierrepont Road, Lady Bay, Notts NG2 5DX

Lady Bay Inns

e-mail: F: Poppy & Pint @PoppyandPint poppyandpint

2 Stratford Rd, West Bridgford, Nott’m NG2 6BA

e-mail: F: Stratford Haven @stratfordhaven stratfordhaven

282-284 Arkwright St, Nottingham NG2 2GR

e-mail: F: Embankment Pub & Kitchen @EmbankmentNottm embankment pub

21 The Rushes, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE11 5BE

12-14 Queensbridge Rd, Nottingham NG2 1NB

13 Main Rd, Gedling, Nottingham NG4 3HQ

Tel: 01509 217014

Tel: 0115 985 0611

Tel: 0115 987 8596

e-mail: F: Swan InThe Rushes @SwanRushes swanintherushes

e-mail: F: Vat and Fiddle @VatandFiddle vatfiddle

e-mail: F: The Willowbrook @WillowbrookCRB willowbrookpub

All of our pubs follow the latest allergen legislation. Further details are available in each establishment.

Profile for Castle Rock Brewery

Castle Rock Quarter #15  

Castle Rock Quarter #15  


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