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Indy Man Beer Con 2017

If you're a beer lover in the UK and you haven't been to Indy Man Beer Con yet, you need to rectify this immediately, because it's an amazing event, held yearly, in Victoria Baths in Manchester. This was our second year at Indy Man, and it's already a must visit event on our 2018 beer calendar!
The beer festival runs over a long weekend - Thursday to Sunday, (we had tickets to the Friday night session.) And it's at Victoria Baths which is a traditional old school swimming baths. Complete with changing cubicles with curtains, and beautiful old tiles. A lot of the festival takes places in the pools - yes, in the bottom of the pools (not filled with water, obvz) or in the nooks and crannies of what used to be the swimming pool. It's so much fun to wander about and explore what is in which room!

My only complaint would be that as we went in the evening, and the baths are sooooooooooooooo badly lit, it's super hard to take photos of your beer, the room, all of it, that look nice!
As with most beer festivals, your ticket includes a glass, but you buy your tokens on the side. Jim and I both bought a pocket full of 10 tokens each, but we bumped into Jules from our local beer shop on her way home and she gave us a token each, so we ended up with 11 beer tokens each! As I said about Borefts - it might sound like a lot but of beer, but the glasses are thirds, so it's not like we were planning on smashing 11 pints......
I was super excited about the amount of fruity beers on offer. I still stand by that the Lervig 'pop that cherry' beer I had last year might be my fave cherry number to date, and this year I had some more epic fruity numbers too. 

Pictured above is the Cloudwater Mango Sour - it was so thick and mango-y and a little bit more like the consistency of a fruit juice rather than a beer, but we both agreed that it was one of the best fruit beers either of us have had - and we had a couple of mango-y beers that night! I also had a really great Chuckleberry Sour by Hawkshead - which was bursting with fruity berry flavours. 

And I managed to get my hands on some of the Buxton x Omnipollo Blueberry Slab with the soft serve on the top. I've had the beer itself before but not with the soft serve. I was a bit gutted for Jim that they didn't still have the Maple version on soft serve still though. 
We also picked up some food tokens to grab some treats - as always, if we see Dim Sum Su at an even we grab a couple - the peanut sugary stuff that they put on the top of the bao is so addictive. We also grabbed ourselves one of the most amazing cheese plates we've had in a long time, and a couple of doughnuts for the bus ride home too! I also, completely by accident, ended up with a fab, really interesting, and savoury, Lemon and Thyme beer which was, the best beer to be drinking whist we ate the cheese! Such a good pairing!
And so, in drunken order, here are the beers that I tried at Indy Man 2017!  
  • Burning sky - cherry monolith
  • 4 points - kettle sour saison
  • Hawkshead - chuckle berry sour 
  • Northern monk - Mango lassi ipa
  • Cloudwater - mango sour
  • Partisan - lemon thyme saison 
  • Brewski - pango (Mango pineapple) 
  • Lervik - hop drop sour
  • Buxton - blueberry slab cake soft serve
  • Imbc x bbno - peach lychee pale 
  • Lervik - hazy days

Ooooooh, whilst I didn't video this year's event, but if you want to see what Victoria Baths and Indy Man is like, here is a vid i took from last years event; 

let's play a game of drink the beer! from emma fisher on Vimeo.

Travel: San Fransisco and and Mammoth

Last year, because of my chemo schedule, we had to cancel our planned holiday to San Fran, Vegas and Mammoth Mountain. But we were lucky enough to have been able to rebook the trip for this winter, so we’re heading out there this winter – with just a few amends – mostly that we’re abandoning the plans to go to Vegas and hopefully hitting up Big Sur and Sonoma instead!

Map from Behance 

The plan so far is that we’re flying in and out of San Fran. We’re away for 18days - 16 on holiday proper as 2 days are spent flying & we’re flying first class though so it’s not a chore! (A perk of having had cancer is your boyf spends all his airmiles on us flying first class!) Our plans so far are that we’d like to spend a week in San Fran, and we’re in Mammoth for 5-6 days, and I’d really like to see Big Sur, Monterey and Sonoma too. But what we actually do in San Fran, and where we go on the other days are totally open to change.

So I am looking for your tips, your advice, your must visits (or don’t visits.) Have you been to any of these places? Where have we GOT to eat? Are there any vineyards in Wine country or breweries we have to hit up?  What sights can’t we miss? What did you think was over rated? Any spots I need to visit to take a billion photos of?

I spent a winter in Mammoth after uni, but it was a long time ago so if you've been recently, your advice for Mammoth would be appreciated too!

Lust List - B4BC Snowboard gear

It's been ages since I bought new snowboarding gear because I just don't feel like I ride enough to warrant new gear, but with a trip longer than just a few days looming, I need loads of things now. So, obvz as it's my post cancer snowboarding trip I’ve been looking at the Boarding For Breast Cancer kit. (I've also been eyeing up the new Burton Step On gear but as that's been sold out in my size since it launched, I'm abandoning those ideas!)
But looking was a bad idea. Because I am far too poor to be able to buy any of it but a girl can dream can't she......But here are some of the bits I love (And need!)

1. These Thirty Two snowboard boots are beautiful and I love how bright they are! My current boots are starting to wear a bit around the toes and aren't the most supportive so, a new pair is probably required!
2. And somehow I managed to snap my flat light lenses AND scratch my iriduim ones on my mid chemo trip, so new goggles are high on the need list and I’d take a pair of these Von Zipper bad boys in a moment!
3. One of the lasting effects of treatment has been a thirst that I just can't shake, not sure why, but I have - it does mean that I have a growing collection of water bottles in my house, I really like this Yeti one too! 
4.I also adore these Union Milan bindings – that pink ombre is just too pretty! Binding are right at the top of the list of things that need replacing though as my toe strap, no matter how often I replace it, just keeps popping off, which isn't ideal at all!  
5. And for good measure I'd throw in a pair of these awesome wolf socks from Volcom, because you can never have enough snowboard socks!

But it's back to reality for me - as much as I want and need new gear, these things will just have to be added to my Christmas list because there's not much chance of be kitting myself out with all new stuff for a while! 

Are you heading to the mountains this year? If so, what is on your must have list?