‘Beer. Now there’s a temporary solution’ – Dan Castellaneta
When it comes to beer and food festivals, its safe to say I’ve attended my fair share so the Gateshead Beer and Music Summer festival wasn’t my first rodeo. We attended a similar thing back in May and were really impressed by the reasonable prices of the drinks and the massive selection of beer they had on offer.
We couldn’t wait to attend again at Gateshead Rugby Club with some of our friends, and add into the mix a scorching hot bank holiday weekend and the tremendous cover band Hip Hop Hooray, we knew we were in for a good time.
Of course, having attended May, I thought I knew what to expect, however there were some differences this time round. There wasn’t the same selection of ales on offer, which is one of the things we were so impressed by. That said, it was such a beautiful day outside, I’m not entirely sure how much real ale people would have wanted to drink. We for sure were all over the cider and lager options. Not being much of a lager drinker myself, I was really pleased to see all the different fruity ciders on offer. And I’m not talking fizzy Strongbow. The peach and the strawberry ciders were particular standouts for me, and because they were flat, it felt more like drinking a lovely cold glass of juice.
As well as the cider and larger, there was a retro bar with 90s drinks like Hooch and Castaway, as well as a gin bar and some street good on offer (the jumbo hot dogs were the perfect sunny afternoon pic nic food!).
Price wise, they’ve kept it reasonable with 5 tickets for a tenner (each ticket got you a half) so you’re looking at £4 a pint. Not the cheapest, but not daylight robbery either and there was still the club house bar open as well for when I was jonesing for a glass of wine. Both the bar and the token station accepted card payments too which is always a bonus as there’s no cash machine on site.
Despite it being a blistering hot Saturday afternoon, it wasn’t too busy. There was plenty of seats outside on the grass (we bought out own pic nic blanket to sit on) with lots of chairs and tables. Well behaved dogs were welcome and a few people had brought their own pic nic food, which I wish we’d also done in hindsight – nice as the food available was, it would have been nice to have our own nibbles too.
Music wise there was something for everyone from a brit pop act, a classic rock band and even some prog rock. Service at each of the bars were quick, we never had to queue too long. By the time we moved into the main marquee to watch the band, everyone was in great spirits and no one was too drunk and belligerent.
Hip Hop Hooray were worth the wait, they were absolutely fantastic from start to finish and the took of through all the best rap and hip hop songs from the 90s and early 00s. I enjoyed them so much we’ve booked tickets to see them at the o2 Academy in October. Safe to say a great day/night was had by all and the whole event was brilliantly organised.
Bring on next may I say!