Skip to main content
30th March 2018

North Bar’s Infamous Lowlands Festival returns this April

North Bar is set to host its biggest ever Lowlands Festival from the 1st of April, showcasing over 190 incredible beers from the best breweries across Belgium and The Netherlands

For over two decades North Bar has prided itself on offering the very best beers from across the world. In 1997, owners John Gyngell and Christian Townsley opened the bar’s doors and shortly after fell in love with European beer. It started with classics like Chimay and Duvel and has since grown into something much, much bigger. Not only has it inspired one of the best beer lists in the country but has shaped the bar’s friendly service, atmosphere and design.

For over a decade North Bar has celebrated these incredible beers by hosting its annual Lowlands Festival. But what does Lowlands even mean? Well it’s simply the low-lying area of Belgium and The Netherlands and importantly the home to many incredible breweries. From a tart and sour Geuze to a soft and creamy Tripel, this region produces some of the world’s most famous and fascinating beers and in April the bars bring this to life with the festival. This love affair isn’t only an annual occasion though, as North Bar has been an ambassador for Dutch brewer De Molen for over a decade and celebrates classic Belgian beer Orval every year with its very own Orval Day.

This year’s festival will be the biggest ever with over 90 new beers being specially imported for the festival. Throughout the month the bars will be hosting an array of events with special guests from the breweries themselves. And for those who know a little less about these beers, they will also be serving beer flights and hosting bottle tastings, so there is a little something for everyone. In their bid to raise money for St Gemma’s Hospice, as part of their #NB20 campaign, they have also commissioned a very special TinTin illustration book in conjunction with local artists. The collection of 24 illustrations reinterpreting the famous cartoon will be auctioned off to raise money.

The first major event of the festival kicks off on Thursday 5th April at North Bar Leeds with a tap takeover from De La Senne. Join us to taste a whole selection of beers from Belgium and the Netherlands and from 5 to 7pm to chat with company Co-owner and Director John Gyngell, Operations Manager Rich Fiddaman and Bar Manager Cal Lister.

John Gyngell, Founder and Director of North Bar Ltd, says “We started discovering and drinking these beers whilst trying to find a beer for each country playing in Euro 98. We soon became obsessed with them and started visiting Ghent and Brussels in Belgium just to find and try more. More recently we’ve visited breweries such as De Molen but nothing will stop us wanting to go back again and again to discover more. We love celebrating the festival every year and inspiring more people to drink these incredible and fascinating beers.”

Rich Fiddaman, Operations Manager of North Bar Ltd, says “Organising the festival each year doesn’t get old. We work with incredible suppliers, such as Cave Direct and Bacchanalia, who allow us to buy the best and most limited beers. Having such close relationships with the breweries themselves allows us to buy directly too and we’re so happy to have De Molen and Het Ulitje visiting to meet our customers and staff in the bars. This is set to be our biggest festival ever and we hope everyone who visits our bars can find the right Belgian and Dutch beer for them.”

The initial line-up of events, including dates and details, are as follows.

  • De La Senne takeover – Thursday 5th – Sunday 8th April
    North Bar Leeds, North Bar Harrogate, Further North
  • Het Uiltje collab with North Brewing Co and beer tasting – Friday 6th April
    North Brewing Co Taproom
  • Six Degrees North X Recovery Sunday – Sunday 15th April
    North Bar Leeds – Six Degrees North beers on tap, Red Snappers with Belgian gin, Dutch cheese toasties.
  • De Molen takeover – Thursday 26th – Sunday 29th April
    North Bar Leeds, North Bar Harrogate
  • Tasting Mondays at Alfred – Every Monday in April
    Alfred – £10 per person, try 3 Lowlands beers, nibble on some cheese, take a bottle home with you.
  • Lowlands Beer Flights throughout April
    North Bar Social
  • Sharing Lowlands bottles and cheese boards throughout April
    North Bar Harrogate

To view the full beer list please view our blog post on our website

North Bar Ltd is a Leeds-based bar group which was established in 1997. The group owns seven venues across Leeds, Otley and Harrogate and prides itself on great drinks, food and service. To celebrate their 20th anniversary the group aims to raise £20,000 for St Gemma’s Hospice.

If you have any questions, would like more information or want to discuss any other opportunities, then please contact or telephone 0113 320 0201.    /NorthBarLeeds    /NorthBarDrinks    /NorthBarDrinks

Search online to find all North Bar Limited’s bars and social media accounts