Two North-east brothers have announced the return of a popular winter drinks festival with tickets on sale now.

Beer @ The Barn, the smaller sibling of the annual Banchory Beer Festival – which is organised by brothers Mungo and Guy Finlayson – will be held on Friday and Saturday, February 12 and 13 (2016) at the Woodend Barn in Banchory.

The mini-festival will feature beers, ciders and gin from a host of Scottish and UK wide breweries and for the first time will also for the first time have a rum bar stocked with Banchory distillers, Dark Matter Rum.

Tickets for the event are available from banchorybeerfestival.com, however they are expected to sell out rapidly.

Mungo Finlayson, co-founder and director of operations at MFGF Events, said: “The idea behind holding an event in February was to give people something to look forward to and enjoy during the post-Christmas slump when nothing really happens and the weather is still pretty bleak.

“This year we are continuing to improve our offering by having a rum bar, stocked with rum from Dark Matter Distillery, which is literally a five-minute walk from the venue so you can’t really get much more local. We will also only have bands and musicians from Aberdeen City and Shire as we wanted to ensure local acts were given the opportunity to shine.

“Last year’s winter event sold out incredibly quickly and we were bombarded with messages from people who unfortunately missed out, so we would encourage people to book quickly to avoid disappointment and join our mailing list to be the first to know when tickets for further events become available.”

The brothers, who both live in the Deeside town, launched the first Banchory Beer Festival in the summer of 2014 at the Deeside Rugby Club pitches with no pre-sale tickets and no event management experience.

However, the festival went on to be a huge success and was followed by Beer @ The Barn at Woodend Barn in February this year. The pair then returned with a summer festival in their hometown in August and a new event at the Thainstone Exchange in Inverurie in September – all of which sold out.

The brothers were also recently shortlisted in the ‘Best Cultural Event or Festival’ at the Aberdeen City and Shire Tourism Awards, which were held at the Ardoe House Hotel.

Guy Finlayson, co-founder and director of drinks at MFGF Events, said: “This was the first award we have entered and were delighted to make it as far as we did.

“Being shortlisted is testament to the hard work of everyone involved in the festivals and also to the fantastic support we have received from the people of Banchory and Inverurie, as well as those who took a punt on travelling to the area for the events.

“There are so many great drinks producers in the UK today and, while our main aim is to give people a good time, we also wanted to be able to showcase and support these small businesses to continue producing amazing beers, ciders and spirits.”

• Details for the 2016 Banchory and Inverurie Beer Festivals will be released in due course – for further information visit banchorybeerfestival.com.

About The Author

Sean Murphy

Driven by a passion for all things whisky-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over six years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink.

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