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Tag: Highlands

FyneFest Trip – Day 8

Adventures in Aberdeen

After a last breakfast at FyneFest—a bacon and egg breakfast roll from Hector & Harriet—it was time to walk back that mile to the bus stop—albeit an invisible one—for my Citylink 926 back to Glasgow.

After quickly getting a coffee to go from Laboratorio Espresso, I headed to Glasgow Queen Street station for my ScotRail train to Aberdeen.

I arrived in The Granite City a bit too early to check in at my Travelodge, so I first visited The Craftsman Company, for another coffee, and a beer. There are not enough places like this that do both specialty coffee—this one even roasts in-house—and craft beer!

In the evening I planned to go the the hash of Aberdeen H3, but it was about 35km out of the city, and not that easy to get to by public transport. I was supposed to catch a ride with another hasher, but he himself had a problem getting to Aberdeen in time. So off I went by myself, two and a half hours in advance… First I had to catch a train to Inverurie, and change onto a first bus there. I had about half an hour for this, so I seized the opportunity to visit BrewDog Inverurie—right across the square from the bus stop—and pick up the pin they didn’t have when I did my Flying Scotsman trip.

After that first bus, I had to get on the same line in the opposite direction, since apparently it serves different stops. From that last stop, it was still a three kilometre walk to the start of the trail…

The hash was totally worth it though: a beautiful trail, a ‘sweetie check’, the most amazing beer stop location, and lots of nice hashers!

The way back to Aberdeen was a lot easier and quicker: I got a ride back with one of the hashers.

Back of the hotel I first had a shower, to wash off four days of camping and a hash through at times quite some dense growth.

After that I somehow managed to drag myself outside for a last beer at BrewDog Castlegate. They soon called last call however, so it would stay at just the one.

FyneFest Trip – Day 7

FyneFest: Leisurely Last Day

The last day of FyneFest, Sunday, is the most relaxing one of all!

For breakfast I went to Winston Churchill Venison again, for a breakfast roll with a square sausage—undoubtedly made with venison—black pudding, bacon, and a fried egg. Not sure how sustainable venison is—hard to find neutral sources about it—but it sure was tasty!

Sunday is also a bit of a ‘leftovers day’ when it comes to the beers. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, since I discovered some really good beers I had missed so far!

For lunch I had to have some of the masala roasted chicken loaded fries from Babu Bombay Street Kitchen, since they would probably pack up before dinner time. After some more beers in good company—you never drink alone at FyneFest—I had Ròst’s chicken burger for dinner.

By that time the bar in the already emptied out big tent had closed, and it was time to move on to the Mixtape tent. No more tasting notes, just enjoying a few familiar beers while enjoying some live music.

With the festival rounding up, and me retiring to my yurt for the last time, I have to give a shout-out to the team of staff and volunteers: they’ve been nothing but excellent!

FyneFest Trip – Day 6

FyneFest: Running Up That Hill!

This Saturday started with a bacon and cheese omelet from Real MacKay Stovie Co., to fuel up for today’s run. No hash today, but it was a run with beer at the end nevertheless!

The Good Time Running club organised a charity run to raise money for Arrochar Mountain Rescue. A couple of dozen people ran almost 5km from the Fyne Ales brewery, up the sunny glen to the Walkers Bar, where we were welcomed with a can of beer. Some even ran back down again, but I took it easy and just walked.

By the time I was back at the campsite, there weren’t any queues at the showers anymore, so the perfect time to freshen up a bit after all that exertion.

Not really hungry enough yet for a full lunch, I just had an ice cream from Highland Fold, before trying the first couple of beers at the main bar.

Just a few, because it was soon time for the first of the Meet-The-Brewers panel discussions moderated by Pellicle’s Matthew Curtis I would attend: “For Beer; For the Planet”

There was a ceilidh as well this afternoon, but before Rock & Reel was done with their first dance, I had to head back to the dark and hot tent for the second discussion: “Is independence in brewing more important than ever?”

For dinner I went to Winston Churchill Venison, for some venison chilli, to be topped up later with a venison sausage roll…

For the entertainment while continuing to taste beer: Tom McGuire & The Brassholes, and by now a FyneFest classic, Massaoke!

FyneFest Trip – Day 5

FyneFest: Tasting Time!

Today was the first full day of FyneFest!

I started the day with a bacon and egg breakfast roll from Hector & Harriet. After that there was not much else to do than wait for the bar to open. It was supposed to open at eleven, but there was a bit of a delay, and I actually didn’t mind at all!

After a couple of beers, the first live band of the day, and a pork burrito from Meksikan, it was time for a Malt Masterclass, led by Muntons Malt.

After that it was already time for dinner: some brisket on fries from Ròst.

Followed by more beers, more music, and then some more beer…

FyneFest Trip – Day 4

Once Again to the Glen!

Thursday started with sleeping in a bit, packing, and checking out of the Z Hotel. I really enjoyed this hotel, I’m very likely to stay there again next time in Glasgow… Maybe I’ll even get a room with a window!

For my last breakfast in town I went to Spitfire Espresso, where I had a banging breakfast burrito: eggs, cheddar, bacon, mushrooms, with a smoked habanero sauce to give it a bit of a kick.

After a quick visit to a photo exhibition, I had a last espresso macchiato at Laboratorio Espresso.

Then it was time to pick up my bag and head to Buchanan Bus Station. 57 bus stances, indoor waiting areas, shops and toilets… And that for a city just half the size of bus-stationless Brussels!

Infrastructure like that made waiting for and getting onto my Citylink 926 to Cairndow an effortless experience. Not to mention the great views on the way to Glen Fyne…

After arriving at the nearest bus stop, it was just a walk of about 1,5 km to the festival terrain. On occasions like these, with only gravel paths and uneven roads, I’m really happy I can convert my trolley bag to a backpack!

So this year again, I bought an Early Access ticket for FyneFest, to make the most of the yurt I booked. And of course, the Thursday is a very relaxed day to start the festival. After getting checked in—can of Easy Trail included—and installed in my yurt, I had a couple of beers in the Fyne Ales taproom.

After that, it was about time for dinner, so I went for an auld favourite, Babu Bombay Street Kitchen, for their mixed pakora.

To finish the night, some Fyne Ales Origins Brewing beers and live music—by Micky Marr—in the Mixtape tent.

Oh, and a service announcement: midge season has definitely started!