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Bob Pontefract



THE Sun first appeared in the Good Beer Guide back in 1977 and has featured for most of the years since then. People from far and wide have been attracted to the quality beers on sale and as interest in local ales grew, one of the UK’s first microbreweries Dent Brewery was established in 1990, initially to supply just 

The Sun Inn.

    The Sun was closely involved with the much-loved and much-missed Dentdale Music and Beer Festival which was first staged in 2009.

    This event proved conclusively the appeal of quality real ale in Dentdale. More than fifty casks of different real ales of all kinds, both local and national were always supped well before the end of the weekend.

    The Sun hosted impromptu folk music sessions, boosting the sales of their beer. The spirit of the festival still lives on at the Sun with diehard musicians and drinkers gathering in the bar for occasional music weekends.

   I hope that if the community buy-out works that there will be plans to improve the cellar and use the outside cool store.

    Visiting a pub nowadays is a costly activity and potential customers need to be attracted by quality food and drink, much of it locally sourced, and at a reasonable price.

    Dent is particularly well situated between the Dales and the Lakes to benefit from some of the finest produce in the land.

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Although Dent Brewery is sadly no longer brewing there are a host of top quality microbreweries and small family brewers in all directions.

    In recent years, it is probably fair to suggest that the range of beer on offer at the Sun has largely been driven by cost price rather than variety and quality. We might aim to change that mindset.

    Always bearing in mind the tastes of Dentdale locals and without necessarily ditching all of the current regular suppliers, such as Kirkby Lonsdale Brewery, Pennine Ales and Wensleydale Brewery, we would look to freshen and enhance the range and variety of ales on offer.

    Beer drinkers nowadays are far more discerning in their choices. There are a multitude of beer styles and strengths out there and we would like to feature some of them on the bar of the Sun.

    Brewers in the North West and Yorkshire, both large and small such as Hawkshead, Ulverston, Vocation, Cross Bay, Yorkshire Dales, Roosters, Timothy Taylors, Barngates, Bowness Bay, Lancaster,

Ossett and Marble to name but a tiny handful, produce a range of quality beers.

    In addition to the core of local ales could be added the occasional national favourites from the likes of Fyne Ales, Thornbridge, Adnams or St. Austell.

    At the same we should try to feature different beer styles for those customers who might be looking for a traditional mild, bitter or stout, even a New Zealand Pale, American West Coast IPA or Belgian Saison! Sourcing such a cornucopia of beers is not a problem.

    For those brewers that do not deliver, there are a number of beer distribution companies that can sell us all kinds of beer from far and wide!

    Looking further into the future, there are a variety of events that can be organised to showcase our beers and attract customers.

    Tutored beer tasting, “Meet the Brewer” evenings or even a mini summer beer festival marquee in the garden with some of those loyal musicians from the Music and Beer Festival days.

    All of which might just help us to claim we serve “The Best Ales Under The Sun”.

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