I got my first experience of the emergent Northern Irish craft beer scene when I spent a weekend with the folks from Boundary Brewing earlier this year. But this weekend, I was back in Belfast for the second iteration of ABV Festival, a truly modern beer event held in the decrepit-yet-beautiful Carlisle Memorial Church.
Over four sessions the festival poured what was arguably the most progressive selection of beers the city had ever seen. There were sours, Stouts and Pales galore from the likes of Cloudwater, The Kernel, Mikkeller, Galway Bay, and, of course, Boundary. The evolution of modern beer is very much in its early stages in Northern Ireland, but with the careful stewardship I saw from the organizers of this festival, its future is in very safe hands indeed.