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Bretted Best Bitter

Introducing Bretted Best Bitter! This exciting new Funk Dungeon release is a collaboration with our pals Will and James from the fantastic Manchester-based Balance Brewing & Blending, who specialise in mixed-culture wild and sour beers.

Working with a Manchester brewery meant we just had to create our take on a bitter! Brewed using entirely UK grown ingredients in keeping with one of the key drivers behind the Funk Dungeon project, this one uses Chevalier heritage grain, with crystal malt and a rigorous dry hop with aged Keyworth Early. The pleasant malt sweetness balances beautifully with a bold, slightly funky hop character. Pitched with each of our house blends of yeasts, a complex mix which has produced a delightfully refreshing and light beer with a delicate tart finish, coming in at 3.4% ABV and pH 3.8. It’s also both vegan and gluten free.

On the brewday, the Chevalier didn’t give us a great deal of sugar and the resulting wort wasn’t particularly fermentable by our house yeast, which wouldn’t have been ideal for our “clean” beer! However, it was perfect for this project as it gave plenty of potential for refermentation in barrel. This refermentation was sloooooow, with the beer spending nine months in European Oak barrel, allowing for exciting layers of flavour to develop over time.

After packaging, the beer has spent a further 4 months in bottle prior to release, to allow for a rounding out of flavour and time for a gentle carbonation to develop.

The other side of the Pennines to us here in Sheffield also had a major influence on the design for this collaborative brew. Hence the main feature of the illustration is a skellie suffragette – loosely inspired by the statue of Emmeline Pankhurst which can be found in St Peter’s Square, in the city centre of her home town of Manchester. The statue, sculpted by Hazel Reeves, portrays Pankhurst standing on a chair, which was perfect for us to emulate and be inspired by to bring in a playful element using the literal meaning of the word “balance” – and with it being “the Rainy City” we couldn’t resist adding in an umbrella!

The beer launches at the Balance Taproom, on the (rather aptly named for the occasion) Sheffield Street in Manchester, on Friday 26th April. Our Funk Dungeon lead brewer Jim will be there along with Will and James to chat about the beer and enjoy a few tasty mixed ferm drinks together. Please join us! There’s an exclusive pin heading to the event, and it will then be available in keg and 750ml bottle from Monday 29th April (you can pre-order now, including from our online shop).

PS – We’ve also still got a couple of barrels of this beer resting in the Dungeon which will be released at a currently undetermined point in the future! We plan to spend some time in the beautiful Peak District which lies in between our two breweries to forage some fun additional ingredients for these, so watch this space for Bretted Best Bitter pt. 2…

  • About Us

    A true Sheffield institution founded in 1996 and based in the heart of the Antiques Quarter, Abbeydale Brewery blends heritage and tradition with creativity and innovation.

    Abbeydale Brewery brochure

  • Contact Us

    Abbeydale Brewery Ltd
    Unit 8, Aizlewood Road
    S8 0YX
    Telephone: 0114 281 2712
    Email: [email protected]


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