Bottled it: the rise of Leeds bottleshops
Words by Lauren Entwistle
If you’ve got a keen eye, you’ll have noticed that loads of bottleshops have sprouted in and around the city centre. Perfect places for fans of the humble beer, we’ve compiled our favourite spaces to find a bottle of something special – without a tinny in sight.
(Ok, maybe a tinny or two.)
Growlers in Headingley
Situated on Otley Road, Growlers is a newly opened beer shop selling a wide range of bottles, cans and draught beers. But just because they’re pretty fresh doesn’t mean that they’re new to the game – they sell a huge range of beers from popular to little less known brewers, all alphabetised on their website.
It’s perfect for the couch potato in you too, as Growlers also offers an in-house delivery service where customers can simply order off the website and have bottles delivered straight to your door. They also have a top range of wines, soft drinks and even sweets.
Like the milkman, but better.
North Bar is a big name in Leeds’ drinking circles, so it only makes sense that they’d offer a bottleshop service. Whilst not technically a stand-alone shop, all North Bar bars offer a take-away option should you fancy something from their fridge. As they have so many beers (show-offs) – if there are a few bottles or cans you have your eye on, you can simply ask for a boozy doggy bag. They even offer a discount of 10% off 3-5 bottles and 15% on 6 or more. Talk about a treat.
Tall Boys Beer Market
Tall Boys Beer Market is a bottle shop, beer café and also coffee spot in Thornton’s Arcade right at the middle of Leeds city centre. They have a range of over 350 beers that showcases some of the most exciting ‘craft’ breweries from around the world. Food, coffee, draught beer, and freshly baked bread are all available throughout the day in ‘The Noonshine Café’, an ongoing collaboration between Tall Boys, Grub & Grog and the mighty Leeds Bread Co-op.
You can also grab a “growler”, which is a fancy bottle that keeps beer nice and fresh for £6 and then it’s yours to keep. Just ask them nicely and they’ll “purge the bottle with CO2” to stop your beer from spoiling and then top it up with whatever beer you fancy. Other than a house, it’s arguably the best investment you’ll ever make.
Beer Ritz has been in the beer business since 1998, so they know a thing or two about keeping thirsty punters satisfied. Their shop is tucked away on a sleepy backstreet in Headingley, keeping around 500 beers in stock – so we’re pretty sure that you’ll be able to find something to please your palate.
Picking your usual can of Carling to exotic brews from all over the globe, including an excellent selection of Belgian, American and British bottled beers. They also stock many hard-to-find international brews, particularly special editions by smaller American breweries, holiday favourites and the cream of new wave British brewing.
It goes to show that sometimes experience really does outweigh youth.
The Curious Hop
The Curious Hop is a speciality beer shop on New Market Street in Otley, selling an extensive range of craft beers, real ales and world beers along with a seriously impressive selection of ciders. They carefully select beers and ciders on the basis that they represent the diverse flavours and styles currently being produced in the flourishing brewing community, so you’re chugging with a cultured conscience.
The Curious Hop showcases many of the award winning beers that are being created here in Yorkshire and from the whole of the UK – also sourcing beers and bottles from far-flung places. They also have an online bottleshop, spotlighting their favourite beers certain dates – check out their Oktoberfest selections – with a mobile event bar coming soon. These guys are definitely ones to watch.