Birmingham has a growing craft beer scene. It’s just one of the many reasons I enjoy living here in the West Midlands! Hidden away from the hustle and bustle of Birmingham’s main streets, two friends have taken their passion for craft beer to the next level, taking the plunge and opening their own bar. Tilt opened on the 31st October 2015 and is the brainchild of Kirk Sadler and Richard Kimberley. I paid a visit to see what’s on offer.
Tilt is located within the Grade II* listed City Arcade shopping precinct, off Union Street. It’s a beautiful setting, reminiscent of the streets of Paris or London!
The first thing you notice as you walk towards the bar is it’s branding. Not fronted with big, in-your-face signage, Tilt screams minimalist yet stylish. Tilt has a well-designed logo which has been applied to the windows. Long, bold letters in a matte copper colour with a solid black shadow. Simple yet so effective.
Walking up the side, towards the entrance, you can see the steel beer pumps through the window. Inside, you’re hit with the smell of fresh coffee. It’s clear Tilt are as passionate about their coffee as they are beer. The coffee is sourced from around the world and the selection is as varied as the beer.
The feel to the bar is spacious, chilled and stylish. Across the back wall is a line of clipboards with the beer selection on. Furnished with wooden retro/vintage stools and chairs, it almost reminded me of the stools I sat on in science lessons back in school… only now you can enjoy a cold refreshing beer!
I visited with a friend in the morning, so we opted to play it sensible and start with a coffee. The name of which is lost on me at the moment! There is nothing more satisfying than the smell of fresh black coffee to start the day. The coffee was strong, bitter and dry, my ideal taste. My friend (who has a sweeter tooth) found it a little too bitter, with an odd “twang” to it. I would say its like everything, everyone has their own personal preferences! I thought it was great and an ideal start to the day.
Once the coffee had gone down nicely, I decided a cold, fresh beer was in order. With a vast array available, displayed across the wall on clipboards, I needed a recommendation! Richard recommended a beer made with one of my favourite hops, Nelson Sauvin. Being hopped with a single variety meant the beer had a basic, fresh and fruity flavour. Berry flavours came through, finishing with a light dry note at the end. The perfect beer to clear my tastebuds and prepare me for a day of (hopefully) complex ales.
As my friend doesn’t drink beer, he opted for a cider. We have both had bad experiences with draught cider before. We had some cider which was best described as rural, with a distinct taste of hay/farmyard! Fortunately, this cider was light and refreshing. Soft and a little too easy to drink! One of those you could drink too quickly, forgetting it was alcoholic. Four or five pints later, you remember that you should of took your time with it.
After spending an hour or so in Tilt’s chilled out atmosphere, we went on our way. We briefly spoke with Richard and arranged to come back when both founders are present for a more detailed chat!
If you’re in Birmingham and fancy a proper coffee, or a unique ale, drop in to Tilt.