A celebration of beer, community and independent values
 

Basqueland

You might imagine that three Americans would have an incredibly tough time setting up a brewery in a region known for its intense cultural pride and sense of self. But Kevin Patricio, Ben Matz and Benjamin Rozzi rapidly won people over with a range of flavoursome beers inspired by their surroundings, but with a definite Californian accent.

Based in stunning San Sebastián, on the northern Spanish coast near the border with France, Basqueland draw heavily on the culinary tradition of the region, creating beers that are designed to be enjoyed with food and that can hold their own against the sublime techniques and flavours found in the Basque country. It's unsurprising that their approach is food-focused, given San Sebastián has more Michelin stars per capita than any other city in the world and considering Kevin himself is a chef who runs highly-regarded restaurant La Madame. Head Brewer Ben adds impressive brewing experience to the mix, having worked for Californian stalwarts Stone and Port Brewing, as well as Mexico's Wendlandt.

Understandably then, their beer follows in the West Coast tradition, featuring punchy flavours and classic styles that gained popularity in the Californian boom of the 1990s and early 2000s.

 
IMG_2468.png
 

Brouwerij Kees

Kees Bubberman aims to make beers with a 'twist'. This giant Dutchman is particularly keen on fruity, hoppy flavours and strong dark ales, but always with 'something' special to make them stand out.

Drawing on his background as a chef, Kees has always experimented heavily with flavour, starting out as a brewer with Emelisse in 2007 before setting up Brouwerij Kees in 2015, and is constantly on the look-out for new tastes and inspirations. His imperial stouts and barley wines have become almost legendary, providing bags of flavour but also enviable layers of complexity and nuance - few brewers are better at creating big, malt-forward beers.

We have brewed three collaborations with Brouwerij Kees, including our Custard Porter in 2015, Raspberry Cream Ale the following year and an as yet unreleased imperial stout that is currently ageing in barrels.

bubblepop2.gif
 
 
 
A7R09344.png
 

To Øl CPH

After traveling the world the Danish Gypsy brewery To Øl settled down in 2015 to build their brewpub BRUS in the heart of the Nørrebro neighbourhood of Copenhagen, with the goal to explore flavours across a wide - and wild - range of micro-brewed beverages.

Here To Øl, under the alias To Øl CPH, is doing small batch beer production ranging from fresh and juicy to complex and experimental. Working alongside a kitchen team led by former Michelin starred chef Christian Gadient, the brewers are always searching for new flavour combinations, using a variety of fruits, herbs and other adjuncts in the drinks they create.

So far, we've done two collaborations with To Øl CPH, both in Copenhagen; The Juice Brothers in 2016 and Quick Splash earlier this year.

dimondflash.gif
 
 
 
A7R09131.png

Dry & Bitter

Dry & Bitter's origins can be traced back to the opening of Fermentoren, a beer bar in Copenhagen. The brewery's founder Søren Parker Wagner opened Fermentoren in 2011 with his partner Jay Pollard and this was the beginning of a whole new beer adventure.

The next logical step seemed to be to start making beer as well as selling it, so when the opportunity came about to buy a brewery in 2015, Søren jumped at the chance. They started out with the ambition of brewing super fresh IPAs and this still remains true, with flagship beers like the Bale Ale series, Hobo Chic, Uprising and Dank & Juicy defining their approach.

Søren is also the man behind the fundraising initiative Hops Not Hate, which is a network of bars, bottle shops, distributors and breweries committed to raising money for charity through the enjoyment of beer. Two of the collabs we have brewed with Dry & Bitter were under the Hops Not Hate umbrella, Let There Be Love and Compassion IPA, but we've brewed a further two beers together, Mobile Speaker and Draining The Swamp.

burst.gif
 
 
 
DSC00759.png
 

Dugges

Pioneers in their home country of Sweden, Dugges were established by Mikael Dugge Engström back in 2005, initially with a focus on American styles. But a penchant for experimentation has led them down a slightly different path since and they are now best known for their flavour-packed, fruited sours and imperial stouts.

As one of the first craft breweries in Sweden, Dugges have been relied upon to push the boundaries and play a leading role in the growth and development of the country's nascent beer community.

Family is also important to them, as Dugge is actually a family name carried by two generations currently working at the brewery.

Three collaborations have emerged from our friendship with Dugges; our Vic Secret Sour IPA in 2017, followed by Pale Ale Pale Ale Pale Ale and Yummy Rummy later in the same year.

Bubble3.gif
 
 
IMG_1027.png
 

Fuerst Wiacek

One of two breweries invited to Friends & Family & Beer by our good friends Track, these Berlin-based gypsy brewers haven't taken long to gain the respect of their industry peers. Since their first brew at the end of 2016, they've become well known for seriously tasty New England IPAs, which means they are swimming against the tide in their native Germany, where lager still rules!

But that hasn't hampered them. They're currently on the look-out for permanent premises in Berlin but, in the meantime, are continuing to churn out a series of juicy treats, include collaborations with a number of the breweries attending Friends & Family & Beer. Dry & Bitter, Garage, Lervig, Magic Rock, Track and Wylam have all collaborated with Fuerst Wiacek over the past year and they say you're judged by the company you keep, so it stands them in incredibly good stead.

waterbottle.gif
 
 
 
DSC03057.png
 

garage Beer Co

Garage was set up by James Welsh and Alberto Zamborlin after the pair met at the brewing academy of infamous Catalonian beer personality Steve Huxley, a Liverpudlian expat who made it his mission to spread the word about good beer in Barcelona.

The brewery's ethos is centred very much on beer's role as social lubricant, encapsulated by the welcoming, convivial vibe found in their central Barcelona tap room. You also won't find the Garage team at festivals without their famous porron, a Catalonian wine pitcher designed to foster communal drinking.

Garage are perhaps best known for bold, juicy IPAs, such as Soup and Double Soup, but they also have a growing series of fruited sours. Our one collab with Garage to date was Exit Right in 2017.

diamond2.gif
 
 
 
 

Kex

Born out of an exciting social hostel, restaurant and bar situated in a former biscuit factory in Reykjavík, Kex have quickly built a strong name for characterful beers brewed in the spirit of nonconformity and a desire to create unique experiences.

Beer was prohibited in Iceland until 1989, so the country has a lot of catching up to do! Drawing on his background in food, Kex co-founder and brewer Hinrik Carl Ellertsson has quickly made up for lost time by brewing a varied array of styles and working on eye-catching collaborations with the likes of Other Half, Collective Arts, and Cycle Brewing.

burst.gif
 
 
 
DSC06143.png
 

Lervig

Lervig set out to create great beer by working outside their comfort zone, combining a creative approach with the extensive brewing experience of a team led by brewmaster Mike Murphy.

When Mike arrived at Lervig in 2010, the brewery had spent the previous seven years of its existence producing only pilsner, but this rapidly changed once he started to put his own stamp on the beer.

Now, the story is very different. Lervig are known for their progressive, and often outlandish, creations underpinned by a core series of easy-drinking pales and lagers. As one of the first craft breweries in Norway, they have constantly strived to keep leading the country's beer scene forward.

Our three collaborations with Lervig are Black Forest Stout, There’s A Cold Beer In My Fridge, And I Need A Drink, and I Got Pils, Now What? all brewed in 2017.

dimondflash.gif
 
 
 
 

Mikkeller

When he set up Mikkeller in 2006, Mikkel Borg Bjergsø was a maths and physics teacher who had started experimenting with hops, malt and yeast in his kitchen in Copenhagen. Now, Mikkeller are one of the most recognisable names in the world of independent brewing, with bars across the world and breweries in New York and San Diego.

Starting out as a gypsy brewer, Mikkel was unconstrained by the complexities attached to running a bricks-and-mortar operation and quickly became lauded for his unique approach to recipe creation, challenging traditional attitudes towards styles and ingredients.

There's barely a style Mikkeller haven't attempted at some point, but the brewery is now perhaps best known for its Spontan series of barrel-aged, spontaneously-fermented beers, and rich, powerful dark beers.

FESTIVAL BEER LIST

Stedsegrøn, 3.5% Session IPA (vg)

Spontan Double Lingonberry, 6% Sour Ale brewed with lingonberries and aged in oak barrels (vg)

Ahh BA White Wine, 6.8% Belgian Ale aged in white wine barrels (vg)

Spontanpearbanana, 7.7% Sour Ale brewed with pear and banana and aged in oak barrels (vg)

Spontanhexadrupelraspberry, 8.9% Sour Ale brewed with raspberries and aged in oak barrels (vg)

Nelson Sauvignon Dry Hopped 2018, 9% dry-hopped Belgian Wild Ale aged in Chardonnay barrels

Spontanpentadrupelblueberry, 9.6% Sour Ale brewed with raspberries and aged in oak barrels (vg)

Beer Geek Fudgesicle, 12% Imperial Oatmeal Stout brewed with cocoa, vanilla and lactose

Beer Geek Vanilla Shake Barrel Aged Bourbon (2016), 13% Imperial Oatmeal Stout with coffee, vanilla and lactose aged in bourbon barrels

* (vg) = vegan

Spring.gif
 
 
 
A7R09131.png
 

Brasserie du Mont Saleve

Located in mountainous eastern France, right on the border with Switzerland, Brasserie du Mont Salève have been one of the key players in the fight to establish independent brewing in a country fixated with wine, where previously only industrial lager has thrived. Founder and brewer Michaël Novo is a former chemist with a passion for hops, who started experimenting with recipes and ingredients in his kitchen before deciding to take the risk and open a brewery in 2010.

Mont Salève are one of the most innovative forces in the nascent French craft beer scene, but there's also a distinct classical accent in everything they do. This shines through in the art deco-influenced branding, but also in the choice of styles and ingredients, drawing inspiration from European brewing heritage before adding a unique twist. This is encapsulated in beers like their Sorachi Ace Bitter, a 2.5% pale beer that takes its lead from English tradition but uses a modern hop varietal known for its idiosyncratic flavour profile. Mont Salève also draw inspiration from the environment around them, using malts that are cultivated and malted by Les Malteurs d’Echo, a local cooperative, and experimenting with the use of wild yeast from grapes. We've produced two collaborations with Mont Salève drawing on this approach - Pompettes, which was a mixed-fermentation dry-hopped sour, and Pétillant Naturel Houblonnée, modelled on biodynamic Champagne.

tornado.gif
 
 
 
A7R01553.png
 

Oedipus

Founders Alex, Paul, Sander and Rick began hatching plans to start a brewery while working at BeerTemple, a small US-influenced beer bar in Amsterdam. They developed an ambition to go out and create the flavors they all enjoyed for themselves. Since the quartet started brewing beer on pots and pans in a tiny Amsterdam kitchen, their focus was on doing things differently, playing with colors and silly ideas, and having fun. As a result, Oedipus has always been centred around a feeling of friendship and community, and their taproom in Amsterdam-Noord has become a place not just to drink beer but also to celebrate art, music, food and each other.

Oedipus remain rooted in their communal home brewing origins, and ready to go wherever their taste buds take them. Who else could count a saison brewed with lemongrass and Szechuan pepper or a Thai-inspired tripel as core beers? We brewed a hoppy Belgian pale ale with Oedipus following their festival, Planet Oedipus, in 2017. Our second collaboration, a Bretted Saison, is also on the way.

Spring.gif
 
 

Stigbergets

One of two breweries invited to Friends & Family & Beer by our good friends and neighbours Track, Gothenburg-based brewery Stigbergets have risen from humble beginnings to become highly sought-after for what can only be described as big, hop-focused bangers. Their rise can possibly be traced to two beers - GBG Beer Week 2016, which was brewed for Gothenberg Beer Week, opened the wider world's eyes to their ability to create incredibly flavoursome, juicy IPAs, while Amazing Haze followed hot on the heels of this, cementing their place among Europe's most respected producers of the style.

They've gone from strength-to-strength since starting out back in 2012 with the main aim of brewing beer for the restaurant Kino. They've previously collaborated with several of the breweries attending Friends & Family & Beer, including Bagby Beer Co, Collective Arts, Dugges, Magic Rock, Mikkeller, and Track.

boxboxbox.gif
 
 
A7R09114.png
 

Tilquin

When Gueuzerie Tilquin opened its doors in February 2009, it became the first gueuze blendery in the mainly-French-speaking area of Wallonia in southern Belgium, a region that is perhaps better known for bière de garde and saison, or for its three Trappist breweries, Chimay, Orval and Rochefort. It was the brainchild of Pierre Tilquin, a bio-engineer with a PhD in statistical genetics who had yearned for a job that was more hands-on. After stints at Huyghe, known for brewing Delirium Tremens, and respected lambic producers Cantillon and 3 Fonteinen, he had developed the know-how and experience to start-up on his own.

Despite facing some initial resistance from the traditional gueuze producers, who are largely focused in Pajottenland, Tilquin has since won their respect through his impressive output and earned a place in HORAL, The High Council for Artisanal Lambic Beers.

Tilquin acquires wort from Boon, Lindemans, Girardin and Cantillon, which is then fermented in oak barrels before being blended to create the final gueuze. The flagship Oude Gueuze Tilquin à L'Ancienne is a blend of one, two and three-year-old lambics and has gained a big reputation as a gueuze that is complex, tart and bone dry, yet highly accessible when compared to many of its funkier contemporaries.

FESTIVAL BEER LIST

Gueuze Tilquin - Draft Version, 5.3% Gueuze (vg)

Quetsche Tilquin - Draft Version, 5.3% Blended Lambic fermented with plums (vg)

Mûre Tilquin - Draft Version, 4.8% Blended Lambic fermented with blackberries (vg)

Experimental Fruit Series #2 - Pêche Tilquin - Draft Version, 5% Blended Lambic fermented with peaches (vg)

Experimental Fruit Series #2 - Mangue Tilquin - Draft Version, 5% Blended Lambic fermented with mangoes (vg)

Experimental Fruit Series #2 - Groseille à Maquereau Verte Tilquin - Draft Version, 5% Blended Lambic fermented with green gooseberries (vg)

Experimental Fruit Series #2 - Mûre Rullquin, 7% Sour Stout fermented with blackberries (vg)

* (vg) = vegan

diamond2.gif
 
 
 
A7R00699.JPG

White Hag

According to ancient Irish mythology, the all-seeing Mother Nature was known as The White Hag, and it's this mythical character from which the brewery takes inspiration, shaping a series of beers that pay homage to the stunning landscape around the brewery in Sligo, a coastal town in north west Ireland. This is most apparent in beers like Meabh Rua Irish Bog Ale, a strong Irish Red Ale with hints of peat smoke, and Beann Gulban Irish Heather Sour Ale, a gruit that uses heather tops instead of hops and is aged in red wine barrels with wild yeast from heather flowers. Their core range has a classic, elegant feel, with Brewmaster Joe Kearns crafting balanced IPAs, a crisp, modern pilsner and a mixed fermentation sour among others.

But Irish spirit is apparent in more than The White Hag's beers. You always know when these folks are in town as the party is taken up several notches. Their own festival, Hagstravaganza, which we poured at earlier this year, is known for its unrivalled atmosphere, so we're delighted to return the gesture and get them over here to help you all get in full party mood.