North West as a Region

Next up in the trip clockwise round the UK regions we get to the North West. Hopefully this region isn’t controversial as it only includes: Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside

As with the other regions I have just added up each persons rates in the counties top 50. The number are dominated by Greater Manchester, but below are the top 40…

Position Rater Total Rates
1 ManVsBeer 4381
2 fonefan 2486
3 cgarvieuk 2479
4 DJMonarch 2333
5 Theydon_Bois 2149
6 mR_fr0g 1997
7 madmitch76 1847
8 imdownthepub 1794
9 Stuu666 1681
10 Leighton 1541
11 allmyvinyl 1501
12 MrTipple 1409
13 harrisoni 1350
14 Garrold 1257
15 AshtonMcCobb 1215
16 Mr_Pink_152 1056
17 Beese 1046
18 Grumbo 1046
19 mr_h 1025
20 Rune 950
21 minutemat 859
22 WingmanWillis 855
23 leaparsons 852
24 Scopey 848
25 Towey1989 832
26 RichTheVillan 780
27 Trolleo 768
28 LazyPyro 730
29 mike_77 702
30 BlackHaddock 697
31 Finn 697
32 Fin 681
33 Ungstrup 661
34 redders1974 660
35 planky84 643
36 Desverger 630
37 jamestulloch 587
38 yespr 572
39 Nocturne 532
40 anders37 506

As before I’d be interested to see your best beers, brewery or general stats for the region.


Only part of the North West Region I have visited is Greater Manchester and that was only the airport on the way home from Leeds. We rated Thornbridge tZara, and Belhaven Old Gold at The Spinning Jenny (now defunct or just not on Ratebeer) inside the terminal. I believe this was also the airport where Mabel and I delighted in trying to figure out how to get the most amount of chocolate while spending the most of our leftover GBP coins :smiley:

Greater Manchester is my 7th most rated English county. My top ratings are:

Beer Rating Entered Place
Track Skyway C.E.VS.G 3.9 3/18/2018 On tap at Mother Kelly’s Bethnal Green, London.
Cloudwater DDH IPA Citra BBC 3.9 9/30/2018 On tap at Birreria Volo Zwanze Day event, Toronto.
Cloudwater A Fire By the Bines 3.9 10/21/2019 On tap at Cask Days, Toronto, ON.
Cloudwater / Salt Proper 3.9 10/26/2019 On cask at Cask Days, Toronto, ON.
J.W. Lees Harvest Ale (Calvados) 3.8 11/7/2010 2004 Vintage, Bottle from Premier Gourmet, Buffalo, NY
Marble Decadence 3.8 3/14/2018 On tap at BrewDog Shepherd Bush, London.
Cloudwater Invention and Other Tools 3.8 11/3/2019 On cask at Bar Volo, Toronto.

Interesting that most of those were rated in North America.

Cumbria 7 ratings. The most notable being Hardknott Vitesse Noir shared at a tasting at cgarvieuk’s in Edinburgh, and Hardknott Granite 2009 at ChrisO’s.

Lancashire 6 ratings, only minor quality of note being that all six were rated in different cities, and three different countries. (Canada, England, Scotland.)

Cheshire a mere three ratings. Mostly not notable except that Frodsham MynzaMild was rated at my only trip to the GBBF in 2010, and RedWillow Wreckless made it across the pond to Cask Days 2013 in Toronto.

Merseyside - One of my two outstanding counties that I have not ticked along with Isle of Wight.

I thought I might be in with a shout to be on the leaderboard for the North West. But nope. Actually, not even close with 433. My Greater Manchester rates aren’t terrible with 217, but all other counties are 216 combined.

Part of the problem is that I haven’t had that many breweries. Cloudwater are way out in front with 71, followed by Pomona Island (21), Hawkshead (14) and Marble, Mobberley and Thwaites at 12 each. With the exception of Cloudwater (although less recently I note: only 2 rates are from 2023) and PI, I just don’t see them in Leicester that often.

Top breweries are pretty interesting…

While Thwaites are skewed by some early high rates, I have had some lovely specials by them so I kind of stand by this. I haven’t had Hwakshead since the takeover, but they were certainly decent in their day.

Scrolling a little further down I find breweries that are no longer with us that I enjoyed like Mad Hatter and Hardknott.


I am at 171.

Saxo has 608! Top37.

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For me the North West is a region dominated by Greater Manchester. It makes me think I should go there for a beer crawl.

Brewery Region Rates Average
Pomona Island Brew Co. Greater Manchester 37 3.89
Wander Beyond Brewing Greater Manchester 53 3.89
Azvex Brewing Company Merseyside 38 3.88
Cloudwater Brew Co Greater Manchester 207 3.80
Track Brewing Co. Greater Manchester 22 3.80
Rivington Brewing Company Lancashire 6 3.73
Carnival Brewing Company Merseyside 5 3.70

243 ticks… again one region counts for over 50%:

Region Ticks
Cheshire 13
Cumbria 21
Greater Manchester 177
Lancashire 17
Merseyside 15
Only three with double digits:
Cloudwater 88
Track 11
Marble 10

Total 273 so well off the pace
Cheshire 37
Cumbria 15
Greater Manchester 168
Lancashire 21
Merseyside 32
I seem to prefer Hawkshead from the Cumbrian brewers.
Cloudwater and Marble fight it out for top spot among the Mancunians.
Beartown and Mobberley are my Cheshire standouts.
As a Lancastrian by birth, the low total and a low high rating of 3.7 for Northern Whisper’s Chinwag IPA are doubly disappointing and the banal quality of many Cross Bay and Lytham beers drag down the average.
Merseyside is redeemed by Axvez and Mad Hatter although I have drunk more Neptune and Liverpool Organic of average quality.
Maybe a trip back to Blackpool will improve my scores.

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Late to the party, and miles behind!

Total 235
Cheshire 24
Cumbria 21
Greater Manchester 152
Lancashire 15
Merseyside 23

Needs more work!