Having been voted the UK’s best bottle shop in 2013 by Ratebeer I guess it’s pretty shameful that I’ve lived in Birmingham for the best part of two years and I haven’t made the trip out to Cotteridge Wines to sample their expansive range of beers.
It turns out the catalyst in prompting me to finally make the journey last Sunday was the launch of Beavertown’s new can range and the necessity to find something to put up a chicken’s arse – the final photo below may explain.
In such an unassuming area of Birmingham, roughly ten minutes drive from the city centre along the Perhsore Road, is quite a strange place to find such a craft beer haven. In the 20-30 minutes I was scouring the ridiculous range of more than 1000 different beers, more people came in asking for Stella 4 and Frosty Jacks than anything else.
Beavertown’s new selection takes pride of place on display as you enter the shop. Rightly so, because aside from the fact that the brewery are producing a huge array of out of this world beers at the minute, the bottles and cans are harbouring some of the most delicious-looking artwork in beer world. So good that you could have the worst hangover in the living memory – I’m talking a face melting, Betty Spaghetti-head of a hangover – and you would still look at a can of Neck Oil Session IPA and start salivating.
Besides the insane range of bottles and cans from UK breweries, including a wide selection from The Kernal, Magic Rock, Brew by Numbers, Siren and Weird Beard (the Fade to Black coconut edition tasted like a black IPA and an imperial porter had indulged in a three-way with a dark chocolate Bounty), the plethora of other world beers was outstanding too.
The Mikkeller range – which included the Beer Geeks specials, Breakfast, Bacon, Brunch Weasel and Vanilla Shake – was really impressive and the biggest I had ever seen. As tempted as I may have been to drink a beer made from coffee beans that had been excreted by a small mammal, I had plenty of other curiosities to fill my basket with. This was without even partaking in a growler of draft beer which they have recently made available to thirsty punters.
£35 later I left to get my purchases in the fridge. The trusty can of Brewdog Punk IPA nestled somewhere at the bottom of the box, ready for being used to assault a chicken carcass with later that evening.
Cotteridge Wines’ Twitter feed is always awash with their new acquisitions so you can always have a quick look before taking the trip out of the city. Either way you won’t be disappointed.