Much to all Game of Thrones fans disappointment, The Vanguard at 1000 Trades is not a GoT themed bar. Just because you serve mead doesn’t make it GoT themed, slow hand clap Birmingham Mail. However, it is a wonderful little spot for a drink. GoT fan or not, you need to check this place out.
The other weekend, shortly after its official opening, I headed to The Vanguard to find out exactly what it’s all about. The wonderful Brum Foodie Vicky had organised this one. We were introduced to Sam, the owner of The Vanguard at 1000 Trades who was to tell us more about his new venture. Sam who started out in bar industry as a bartender and ended up wanting his own bar, which he’s now managed!
The Vanguard has a residency upstairs at 1000 Trades in the JQ. First and foremost The Vangauard is a cocktail bar. However, Sam is a huge fan of mead and intends on it becoming the leading mead seller in the U.K. As part of our visit we got to try out some of his mead offerings. All being pleasantly corrected that it wasn’t a sickly, sticky, overly sweet concoction. Whilst mead uses honey in place of sugar to make alcohol, it doesn’t make it super sweet, although some can be. Mead ranges from still to sparkling and we tried a few on our visit.
Sam chose three meads to showcase to us. The first was a Garden Mead from Lyme Bay Winery, which was sweet but floral and light. Almost akin to delicate earl grey tea. I really enjoyed it. Next up we had a sparkling mead from Yore, which was very refreshing but I preferred our first as this one was a bit sweeter. Last up, and spoiler alert my favourite. The Citra Sea Mead from Gosnells. If you like Salty Kiss from Magic Rock or other sour beers, this one is for you. They use Citra hops to flavour it and finish the flavour notes with sea salt, and it’s just wonderful. Well worth a try if you visit.
Lastly we got to try out a cocktail. The best thing about The Vanguard is that Sam has a no B** S*** approach to cocktails. The menu doesn’t show off the base spirit, instead the menu mentions flavours. I went for the My Neighbour Totoro, which is a yuzu based drink.
Have you checked out The Vanguard at 1000 Trades yet? Let me know in the comments,
P.S. I was invited down to check out The Vanguard. As ever all words, photos and opinions are my own.
P.P.S. The Vanguard at 1000 Trades is located at 16 Frederick Street, Birmingham, B1 3HE. Open Weds-Sat 4pm until late.