City celebrates great British food marriage

Staff from The White Cross and The Merchants preparing for the 10th Annual Beer and Pie Festival.
Staff from The White Cross and The Merchants preparing for the 10th Annual Beer and Pie Festival.

As far as food and drink 
marriages go, there are few that match the relationship between beer and pies.

Both are staple British institutions in their own right, and their partnering has been officially celebrated here in Lancaster for the past 10 years.

This weekend, two city pubs will host the 10th annual Lancaster Beer and Pie Festival, with the event being billed as the “biggest ever for ales” with over 40 different beers and 20 pies available at the four day event at The White Cross and Merchants pubs.

Tim Tomlinson, the landlord at the two pubs, who has also championed Lancaster as being the Northern City of Ale, said: “There are several ways to tell summer is on its way – the knock knock of the spring cuckoo, the first smell of a freshly cut lawn and the White Cross and Merchants Annual Beer and Pie Festival, this year celebrating its 10th anniversary.
“This year will be the biggest ever for ales, with a temporary bar being built inside the White Cross to accommodate more than a dozen extra beers on top of the usual 14.

“Pies available will include last year’s favourite Mixed Game, Pancetta & Port and a Creamy Chicken, Chorizo and Sun Blushed Tomato at The White Cross and Steak and Merlot at Merchants.

“Beers have been sourced mainly from local breweries Lancaster Brewery, Old School School Brewery in Warton, Hawkshead from Staveley, and Hardknott Brewery in Millom, but a few of the UK’s finest modern craft brewers will also have their products on show.”

The event, which starts tonight, Thursday April 23 and runs until Sunday, will also include the charity Man Vs Pie event at The White Cross at 2pm on Saturday, where individuals with big appetites race to consume an XXL steak and ale pie and two pints of ale. The first to finish wins a gallon of beer. Places can be booked at the White Cross for this and the “Curly Wurly Challenge”, all in aid of Cancer Research UK.

Live music will also play out across the two venues over the weekend.

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