Great Yorkshire Beer
2012 was pretty hectic, and my classic sense of timing proved itself once again. Two house moves pretty much soaked up the majority of the new year and spring, and at the same time, I got the chance to write a book.
Late in 2011, I was looking for a book for a friend about beer in Yorkshire. There wasn’t really anything on the market, and the seed of ‘why don’t you do it yourself, then‘ was sown. I put it to the back of my mind, but things kept cropping up to nudge it into focus, if you will. EBBC happened in Leeds; I hosted the pub crawl and hearing and seeing people from around the UK and Europe enjoying my regular drinking spots was great (the most popular? The Grove in Holbeck. People seriously fell in love with that pub). The axe finally fell on Tetley’s. The Cask Report came out and, as usual, gave Yorkshire a massive thumbs-up in terms of brewery volume. Yorkshire, it seems, not only breeds Olympians (and yes, I can say that – I’m a proud Yorkshireman) – we breed Brewers.
So – to massively simplify things – I did it.I wrote the book I wanted to give to my friend. I worked the extra hours, doing the day job and writing before and after, not going out for months on end…all those clichés. I spent weekends, days off and holidays interviewing brewers – the brewers that I felt we not getting enough press, the brewers pushing beer from our region across the UK and Europe. The brewers turning a new generation and demographic of drinker onto beer and pubs, not just the more major players in the Yorkshire brewing landscape who normally get the headlines. Great Yorkshire Beer is their story.
I was lucky enough to find a publisher who shared my enthusiasm for the story, and Great Northern Books have done a great job in putting my ramblings together into a coherent whole. Without giving away too much, if you like The Good Stuff then you’ll like the book. There’s the stories of the brewers, some food and some thoughts. It’s a cool little book, if I say so myself. It’s a labour of love, and one that I hope you enjoy reading.
Praise for Great Yorkshire Beer:
“…But when Linley does delve into the finer points of some of the regions finest breweries, we begin to see the huge overarching influence Yorkshire has on the country’s beer industry, one all the more significant when you consider the rise and rise of real ale compared to the managed decline of the big boys in recent years.”
– Leeds Guide (full review here)
“…It’s warm, friendly, disarming, personable and full of life and fun.”
– CAMRGB (full review here)
“The real strength of Great Yorkshire Beer is that pride and enthusiasm that takes you from one page to the next, and the sense that this is one man’s heartfelt attempt to nail down everything that excites him about where he lives and what he loves.”
– Chris Hall, The Beer Diary (full review here)
“I just love the book. It’s neat, concise, and well-written. No matter where you are in the world, whether you’re an insider or an outsider, if you’ve ever wanted to get a glimpse of how people are, what people eat, and what people drink elsewhere, then I’d suggest buying a copy of Great Yorkshire Beer: Good Food, Good Beer, Good People. See? It’s all in the title.”
– Maggie Cubbler, Loaded Kitchen (full review here)
“Great Yorkshire Beer is, in many ways, the logical extension of Leigh’s blog. It continues the same easy charm, the same informed but informal authority, the same lack of pretentiousness in a niche of writing filled with it…”
– Them Apples (Full Review here)
– Boak & Bailey: ‘Any tourist visiting Yorkshire for the beer would be daft not to take a copy with them, and it would make a great Christmas gift for the Yorkophile in your life.‘ (Full review here)