Chapter Voices: Paul

Posted on: 02 Feb 2016 by Paul Holder

Chapter has evolved alot in the (almost) decade that I’ve worked here. From the perspective of my department, the Bar, we’ve more than doubled our range of drinks over that time, as well as adding an ever-increasing variety of events to our annual calendar. As a cerevisaphile myself (it’s a real word), I’m delighted to be involved in planning and running our beer festivals. Nothing quite eases the Monday morning blues like finding a 40 page list of beers on your desk, and being asked to choose at your will!

Chapter was hosting German beer festivals to coincide with the traditional revelries of Maibock and Oktoberfest long before I arrived. Since 2012, we’ve also added a cask ale festival to our annual schedule. I firmly believe that the key to the success of these events is to never let them become staid and predictable. The proud do not endure; it is important to try something new. With that in mind, we’ve expanded the scope of our next festival. Unknown Pleasures, running from 8 – 12 March, is our opportunity to present a wide range of beers from Manchester’s burgeoning microbrewery scene. In addition to this, we are pleased to be welcoming distilling wizard Aaron Darke to Chapter. Aaron’s company, Zymurgorium, specialise in bespoke spirits, liqueurs and meads, and many of these shall be on offer, both by the bottle and in the form of a truly unique cocktail list. Aaron will be holding a couple of talks and tasting sessions during the week to share his passion and knowledge of the arts of brewing and distilling. And still there is more; chocolate and beer pairing with CocoCaravan; Friday night live music; a specialty festival food menu. This is going to be something special, and I cannot wait for March to come around.

Both myself and the Bar Manager, Dave, are continually interested in increasing and diversifying what our bar can offer. After customer discussions last year, we decided to launch a revised and extended wine list in October, and the response to this has been fantastic. We’ll be doing this annually from now on to keep it fresh and interesting. Aside from this, we have plans to reimagine Chapter’s bar space over the next 12 months, and we’re also looking to add yet more festivals and events to our (and hopefully your) diary.

Photo: Noel Dacey


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