Food & Drink, News

Hydes reintroduces century old vintage bitter for first time on draught

Salford-based brewer Hydes is offering customers a taste of nostalgia after recreating a classic 100 year old ale as part of its ‘vintage’ range.

Hydes Anvil Best will be available on draught across Hydes pub estate throughout July and August.

A traditional best bitter which celebrates Hydes historic ‘Anvil Brand’, it has a bold hop-forward palate with an earthy and herbal character, and biscuit and caramel flavouring. The finish is mildly bitter with a brief pop of lemon and an earthy note of black tea. The aroma has a pleasant spicy, fruity scent.


It was first produced in 1924 in recognition of being an important part of the city of Manchester and based on Manchester’s symbolic bee. It was originally referred to as ‘BBB’ and in 1924 cost 7 old pennies per pint at the bar and 127 shillings for a 36 gallon barrel.

Production was ceased at the start of the Second World War due to lack of ingredient availability but was resurrected after the war as Best Ale and later named Anvil Best before production ceased for the final time in the late 60’s.

Now over six decades later, Anvil Best is one of a six strong special vintage cask ale range which has returned as part of Hydes bi-monthly offering for this year.


The full vintage range comprises historic bottled brews recreated from the original Hydes Anvil range from the late 1800s and early to mid-1900s. In addition to Anvil Best (4.8% ABV), the range welcomes the return of some classic Hydes ales including Anvil Brand Brown Stout (4.1% ABV), Anvil Brand Pale Ale (4.0% ABV), Anvil Brand Light Ale (3.9% ABV), Oatmeal Stout (4.5% ABV) and Nut Brown Ale (3.8% ABV).

Previously all part of a bottled range dating back between 1895 to 1941, this is the first time the range has been re-introduced on cask. Hydes has also recreated the original bottle designs featuring the Hydes Queens Brewery branding to feature on the bar pump clips and beer mats.


Managing director of Hydes Brewery, Adam Mayers said: “Anvil Best is an important ale from the Hydes history books that dates back to the beginnings of the brewery. The reintroduction for the first time of Anvil Best on draught alongside other Hydes bottled beers from the early days of the brewery’s origins up to and including the war years, is an exciting addition to the core range available in our pubs.

“Our customers tell us they really enjoy sampling these authentic brews which are all based on the original classic recipes. Anvil Best is making a limited return for the first time in over 100 years and was first introduced as a bottled bitter in 1924 so it’s great to see it make a historic return exactly a century later for today’s drinkers to enjoy fresh from the cask.”


Hydes, with its brewery in Media City, Salford, was formed in 1863 and supplies beers to wholesalers, pub companies and other brewers throughout the UK and a pub retailing estate of over 50 pubs across the North West of England and North Wales.

To find out more about Hydes Brewery visit

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