Everything you need to know about Springwell Sessions: Leeds’ huge bank holiday beer festival

Coming to Leeds this bank holiday…

Beer lovers, street food drinkers, tipple tasters and fun-loving Loiners unite – this weekend is going to be a memorable one.

Springwell Sessions, North Brewing Co’s biggest weekend-long festival, is almost upon us. Over three days and four sessions, The taproom at Springwell will host no less than 17 different breweries across Europe, five street food specialists and seemingly unlimited kegs of some of the finest craft beer around.

To make the most of your weekend at Springwell, we’ve put together a guide to cover everything from how to find the brewery from the train station to an extensive list of all the participating food and drink vendors to taste test.

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about Springwell Sessions 2023.

All the breweries at Springwell Sessions

Obviously North Brewing Co. will have an impressive selection of craft beers on tap, but the weekender is also hosting breweries from near and far – and there’s going to be plenty to taste tests over the four sessions…

Local favourite Bundobust will be bringing its much-loved craft beer selection to Springwell whilst Manchester-based Cloudwater is hopping over the Pennines for three days of beer sipping goodness. Another Northern brewery taking a break from setting up its new Manchester pub to join Springwell Sessions is Pomona Island Brew Co., so if you can’t wait for the brewery’s new gaff to open, this is the perfect chance to test out its tipple.

Other names you’ll see throughout the weekend are The Queer Brewing Project, a London-based queer and trans-owned brewery; Norfolk-based Duration Beer is a ‘progressive farmhouse’ brewery with award-winning fresh beers and wild ales.

Image: North Brewing Co.

Stillwater Artisanal, brainchild of internationally renowned DJ turned craft brewer Brian Strumke, will be on tap all weekend long, and will be conducting a tasting session at 9pm at the Saturday night session.

Experimental brewery Field Recordings will also host taster sessions throughout the weekend (Friday and Saturday evening sessions) where you can learn more about how their beer represents the owners ‘interests, passions and long history with beer’.

But that’s far from all, you’ll also find the likes of BEAK Brewery serving ‘life-affirming ales’ DEYA Brewery, Belfast-born Boundary Brewing, Edinburgh’s BRULO beer and employee-owned Gispy Hill Brewing Co. from South London all at Springwell Sessions over the four sessions too.

Plus, there’s some exciting names travelling from overseas to make an appearance at the weekender.

Image: North Brewing Co.

To Øl, a Copenhagen-based craft brewery that’s been making a name for itself for its hops and carefully brewed pints; Basqueland Brewing is a Spanish independent with no less than two taprooms in Hernani and San Sebastián and Fuerst Wiack has some of the most beautifully-designed beer cans about filled with ‘modern beer from Berlin’.

For those looking for something different, Far Headingley’s sustainable wine shop Bottlechop will be providing the goods for non-beer drinkers. Expect a wide-spanning selection natural wines and cocktails to keep you going all weekend long.

Street Food

All this drinking, chatting and wandering through Springwell is bound to work up an appetite, and North Brewing Co. has enlisted some of the city’s favourite street food vendors to fill you up. Choose from vegan treats, pizza al taglio, burgers, bao buns and everything in between…

Döner Summer

Burger held up to camera.
Images: Döner Summer
teller tray with chick*n and sauces.

Proving plant-based food is far from boring, there’s good reason the vegan foodie scene and meat eaters alike love these guys.

Cooking up fresh buttermylk burgers, teller trays stuffed with salt and pepper fries, garlic chilli chick’n and all the salad additions you could imagine – Döner Summer is renowned across the north for its vegan options, with sites spanning across Leeds, York and Manchester and plenty of pop-ups all summer long.

POCO Sicilian Street Food

vegan pizza from POCO.
Images: The Hoot Leeds
Spinach and ricotta aranici.

POCO is a local favourite. Cooking up fresh Sicilian treats that’ll have you transported to the sunny Italian coastline through tastes of cannoli, arancini and copious amounts of pizza al taglio.

The independent foodies have been taking the suburbs by storm, proving especially popular for their easy street food style eats, and will soon open a third store in the city centre – but Springwell Sessions is the only spot in the city where you can enjoy a balance of POCO pizza in one hand and a craft beer in the other.

Little Bao Boy

a single bao bun with sauce.
Image: Little Bao Boy
two bao buns held up to camera.
Image: The Hoot Leeds

Resident food truck at Springwell and longtime favourite across the city, Little Bao Boy will be supplying fresh steamed buns all weekend long.

Choose from staple fillings like beef brisket with ginger, garlic, soy, Chinese 5 spice and OJ; salt and pepper aubergine; gochujang cauliflower or the KFB, buttermilk chicken thigh with Kerbside Kids Korean Cowboy sauce and secret flour mix – no matter what your preference you’re going to be back at the truck for seconds (and thirds).

Kerbside Kids

Images: Kerbside Kids

Home of the smashed patty, Kerbside Kids is all about bringing burger sauce to life with a variety of cheese, bacon, vegan friendly and chick*n options.

Add some crinkle cut fries to your order and chicken wings coated in lashings of tabasco habanero maple butter or garlic and parmesan sauces, and you’re set for a true feast at Springwell.

Salma la Fondita

The team behind MorMor present… Salma la Fondita. / Image: MorMor

This new venture comes from the same chefs behind the Levantine cuisine raved about by no less than Jay Rayner, MorMor. The street food venture promises the same quality cooking, taking inspiration from North and Central America.

What’s going on at each Session

It’s safe to say that Springwell Sessions is going to be a feast for the senses, but if you fancy some food for thought, each session has a range of events taking place. And don’t forget, all sessions are dog friendly too.

Learn more about the breweries in attendance or want to question North Brewing Co’s founders John and Christian about their humble beginnings? This one’s for you…

Image: North Brewing Co.

Friday Evening Session (6 – 11pm)

7pm – North’s designer James at Refold will be talking about the relationship between beer and art, and taking you through some of the designs behind North’s beer cans (free entry)

7.30pm – Q&A with Refold and founders John and Christian (free entry)

8.30pm – The Big St George’s Crypt Tasting – a beer tasting event with exclusive beers (pay as you feel)

9.15pm – Field Records tasting (entry fee of 3 tokens)

9.45pm – Libations Rum tasting (£8 per person)

6 – 11pm – Live DJ

Image: North Brewing Co.

Saturday Day Session (11am – 4pm)

11.30am – Hop sniffing (free entry)

12.15pm – Blind beer tasting (free entry)

1pm – Natural wine tasting with Bottle Chop (free entry)

2pm – Q&A with founders John and Christian (free entry)

3pm – The Big St George’s Crypt Tasting – a beer tasting event with exclusive beers (pay as you feel)

3pm – Exclusive barrel tasting for North Beer Club members (free to members)

11am – 4pm – Live DJs

Saturday 29 April 2023, 11am-4pm has SOLD OUT for advanced tickets.

Contact @northbrewco on the day to check for any walk in availability.

Meanhood, Meanwood Radio, and Slide in Brixton will be providing the music all weekend long. / Image: Springwell Leeds

Saturday Evening Session (6 – 11pm)

6-8pm – live DJs

7pm – Field Records tasting (entry fee of 3 tokens)

7.45pm – North’s designer James at Refold will be talking about the relationship between beer and art, and taking you through some of the designs behind North’s beer cans (free entry)

8.15pm – Q&A with Refold and founders John and Christian (free entry)

9pm – Stillwater tasting with “a master of collaborative brewing” craft brewer Brian Strumke (3 tokens)

9.45pm – Gin tasting with Whitewoods (£8 entry fee)

7:30pm-11pm – New York Brass Band (2 x 50 min sets)

Saturday 29 April 2023, 6pm-11pm has SOLD OUT for advanced tickets.

Contact @northbrewco on the day to check for any walk in availability.

Image: North Brewing Co.

Sunday Day Session (11am – 4pm)

Kids go free all day

12 – 4pm – silent warehouse disco rave for kids and families every hour (space for 20 at a time)

11am – 4pm – live DJ

Get tickets for Sunday 30 April 2023, 11am-4pm here.

How to buy tickets

In total there’s four sessions across the weekend, but due to an overwhelming interest, the Saturday day session has already sold out – and Saturday night only has a few tickets left too.

If you want to get your hands on Springwell Sessions tickets, make sure to bag them whilst they’re still available, each costs £12 plus  booking fee.

Your ticket gives you far more than just access to Springwell for your chosen session, everyone will also receive a beer programme to fill you in on the weekend’s events, a commemorative refillable glass to use throughout the event (and take home with you afterwards), and North Brewing Co is also donating £1 from each ticket to charity partners St George’s Crypt.

Get tickets for Friday 28 April 2023 6-11pm here.

Saturday 29 April 2023, 11am-4pm has SOLD OUT.

Get tickets for Saturday 29 April 2023, 6-11pm has SOLD OUT.

Get tickets for Sunday 30 April 2023, 11am-4pm here.

Image: North Brewing Co.

How to get there

Springwell Sessions will be held at North Brewing Co’s own brewery, Springwell (hence the name).

Located in Sheepscar, the brewery is just outside the city centre at Springwell Works on Buslingthorpe Lane and can easily be accessed from Leeds Train Station by taking the number 39 up Meanwood Road and then get off at the Buslingthorpe Lane stop.

Alternatively, it’s a 10 – 15 minute drive from the station, and catching an Uber there is pretty straight forward (especially as you shouldn’t hit any of the roadworks disrupting much of the city centre at the moment).

It’ll take you about 30-40 minutes to walk from the station, just head up towards Leeds City Museum and then through Blenheims or Little London to find Springwell just off Meanwood Road.

The full address is: Springwell Works, Buslingthorpe Lane, Leeds LS7 2DF.

Feature Image – North Brewing Co.


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