We've gone GREEN(er)!

Bristol Beer Factory has just converted all the lighting in the brewery, warehouse and packaging area to energy saving LED lighting.

While it's hard for a brewery to be totally green, we wanted to try to do what we can to be as environmentally conscious as we can.  As part of our brewery expansion we got in touch with the guys at Solarsense to ask them what we could do about our lighting.  The results were clear, apart from its greener credentials, the savings in cost alone made switching to LEDs a no-brainer!

Aside from this, our brewers (& tool-happy MD) are happy that the whole system is now more efficient, tolerant to changes in temperature and gives off less heat in an already kind-of sweaty environment..  It should last much longer than our current equipment and is generally more robust with (hopefully) less maintenance.  AND it contains no hazardous solids, liquids or gases which undoubtedly will be harmful to the environment at some point in its lifespan.  WIN!

So we're feeling pretty smug, what with this and our Diesel/Electric Hybrid truck back on the road delivering beer to our customers we think we're doing alright.

Companies and individuals alike take note - this is not something we want be the only ones doing!  Get in touch with Solarsense or a sustainable solutions provider near you and see what you can do to up your green game.

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The Single & Dual Hop Series

Tristan Hembrow (Senior Technical Brewer) and Tom Clermont (Sales/Operations) explain what it's all about..
 

So what’s all this single/dual hop business?
Tristan:  It all started in Spring 2017, we knew we wanted a new range of beers and we thought we’d give ourselves a challenge & see what we could come up with using only one hop, making the most of all the characteristics of that one hop without anything else masking it.

How did it go down?
Tristan:  It’s been a great learning experience for all of us and seems to have gone down pretty well.
Tom:  People have loved it, it’s great to be able to offer our customers a variety of interesting beers which have a story to tell.  The favourites have already made a welcome return.

Which Single Hop beer was your favourite?
Tristan:  Optimist, I love a hoppy pale.
Tom:  Optimist was great, although I probably drank more Gambler & Mischief.
Tristan:  Mosaic is just so good on its own, if you mix it with other hops it can get overcomplicated, it just makes such a perfect pale all on its own.
It’s made me rethink Independence actually, every time I drink it now I really pick out the Mosaic.  This whole process has led to us reducing the hop bill of Indy & actually making it a better beer with fewer hops.

..and the least favourite?
Tristan Calypso was pretty bad!  Having not used it before, the Calypso hop sounded good, it was described as having characteristics of stone fruit, pear and peach.  It’s classified as a dual hop in that it can be used for both bitterness and aroma - great we thought, one badass hop, one badass beer.  What actually happened was the bitterness totally overwhelmed the beer - it was a ‘tongue-coater’, not good.
Tom The colour was perfect & some of the flavours were great but my god was it bitter!
Tristan:  It was a learning experience for sure, the hop was just way more bitter than we thought.
Tom:  Maybe it was our own fault, pre-destined from the name!  No word play or one step removed back story, just the name of the hop. Pretty unusual for us..

So what’s the Dual Hop range all about?
Tristan:  It was the natural progression really, we knew we wanted to do another series of beers much like they do in the US and a dual hop range followed on nicely from the single hop beers.  The challenge with the dual hop range was blending two hops with different characteristics to make one great beer.
Tom The single hop range was clever as it restricted us and we had to be precise.  The dual hop series means we have to be clever in pairing hops which either naturally complement each other or come together in an exciting way.
Tristan:  The challenge is working out which two hops will give you the beer you want to create, for example Bow Street - I knew I wanted to make an orangey beer so we used the grapefruit & orange notes of Mandarina Bavaria blended with the more peachy flavours of Simcoe.
Tom:  Using the right hops in harmony and the right quantities will give more character to a beer without having to hike up the ABV.  We accidentally made a dual hop beer in Low Rider which at 3.9% has been many people’s favourite, full of flavour at ‘session’ strength.
Tristan:  Subtropic is pretty on-trend, lots of breweries are making tropical beers at the moment - deliberately hazy, high strength keg beers & adding juice or fruit to create tropical flavours.  We thought we’d do it our own way & create tropical flavours just by using the right hops, keeping the ABV low and sticking to cask which tends to be our preference.  The result is a clear, low ABV cask ale with brilliant tropical flavours - it’s awesome.
Tom:  With a banging name!  It sold out in a day, we had to stop the brewers drinking it all.

What’s next?
Tristan:  There are more dual hop beers already planned & in the tank, we may well do more single hop beers too.
Tom:  And the best ones from both ranges either have or will come back – Optimist, Low Rider, Gambler & Mischief have already been brewed a few times.
Beer ranges like these allow us to experiment and create new interesting cask beers, we’re basically innovating and showing off what we can do, it’s pretty fun.

SINGLE HOP BEERS:
Gambler - Amarillo
Mischief - Jarrylo
Papillon - Cascade
Calypso - Calypso
Optimist – Mosaic
Ellehammer – Chinook
Mandarina Bavaria - Mandarina Bavaria
Hoff - Northern Brewer

DUAL HOP BEERS:
Valhalla - Hallertau Mittlefruh + Saaz
Low Rider - Citra + Amarillo
Bow Street - Mandarina Bavaria + Simcoe
Subtropic - Ekuanot + Azacca
Lincoln Shields - Bramling Cross + Ahtanum

                                                 

 

 

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Brewery Open Day 2017

A big THANK YOU to everyone who came down & joined us for a beer or two! It was a great day and much fun was had by all.

We raised a brilliant £526 for The Southmead Project so thank you to all who threw some coins in the buckets.

Another thank you goes to Mark Eddleston (Instagram: marco_fotos) for the photos!

North St Cider

North St Cider

One year in the making, it's time to launch North St Cider - Bristol's new 4.8% Medium DRY sparkling cider.

We at Bristol Beer Factory sometimes drink cider. We are passionate beer drinkers, advocates and producers first of all but we do also like a drop of cider; we are in Bristol after all!

We felt like there was a gaping hole in our cider-drinking landscape where a top-quality, affordable draught cider should be; specifically, one that spoke of the unique spirit of Bristol. There seems to be a general tendency towards medium in typical draught cider and we wanted a medium dry cider with the accent on the dry rather than on the medium. An idea was born…

Together with Westons Cider, an independent, family-run cider maker who share our ethos and passion, we have come up with a medium dry blend of cider that we feel is right for us.

Twelve months on from the initial idea, after numerous, enjoyable tasting sessions, this December we are proud and excited to introduce a new medium dry, sparkling cider at 4.8% ABV, made with 100% British apples, developed exclusively for Bristol Beer Factory by Westons.

Say hello to North St Cider!

This is a brand new, bespoke cider, designed by Bristolian cider drinkers for local cider drinkers. Although we aren’t making this cider ourselves, it comes from us with the same passion and care that we have for our beers with our uncompromising standards of quality and consistency, we hope you love it as much as we do.

LAUNCH PARTY!

To get a taste of it before anyone else and to find out what it's all about and why we're doing it, come along to our launch party at the BBF Tap Room at 6-9pm on Thursday 7th December 2017.

Check out the Facebook event page here.

 

Single Hop Specials 2017

An opportunity for the unique character of each hop to shine.

We are delighted to be increasing the number of different beers available on cask this year and a big factor in that increase is our desire to show off two things: the varied and unique qualities of some of our favourite hops and our skill in brewing the perfect, bespoke base beer, within which each one can shine.

Like most things in beer, single hop specials are not new but the idea really sparked with us and, like with Milk Stout and many other styles beforehand, we saw room to make each of these beers differently, in our own way.

The series launched with Gambler, a showcase for the US hop, Amarillo, a brilliant hop that seems to live in the shadow of the more boisterous Citra and Simcoe. For this hop, we brewed a beautifully balanced 4.2% golden ale and added a judicious amount of the Amarillo for a rounded, complex and subtly orangey hop flavour. It sold out in two days and seemed to fly out across every bar it graced.

With spirits high and interest piqued, it was time for something stronger and more full-on and that followed in the shape of Mischief, a showcase for the unusual and superb Jarrylo hop. The beer we produced was pale golden, 5% in strength and highlighted the brilliant and unusual banana and pear notes in the hop.

August saw the arrival of Papillon, our 4.3% uber-pale vehicle for the fantastic Cascade hop and in this one we decided to up the hop quotient for those who love our hoppier beers, namely Independence and Southville Hop, and we think did so to good effect!

As August waned we went big with a punchy 5% pale ale, cunningly called Calypso, a huge pale with big bitterness from the high alpha-acids of the Calypso hop. A refreshing beer which went down a storm in the late summer sun.

Riding high on the wave of appreciation, the next addition to the series was Optimist, a 4.4% hoppy pale ale with flavours of exotic fruit and blueberry from the luscious US Mosaic hop. Balanced by slight sweetness from use of 30% Vienna Malt, this truly was a beautiful beer.

We are loving this challenge and will be bringing out more single-hopped specials (and maybe even revisiting a few of the popular ones!) in the not too distant future so keep an eye out.

Another new home for BBF

BBF @ Arnolfini
BBF @ Arnolfini

As of Friday 22nd September, there’s another fantastic place for you to enjoy our beer. We’re proud to have partnered with The Arnolfini to take over the management of their café bar, which is in one of the waterfront’s most iconic buildings.

Earlier this week, the team have been busy giving the café a refurb and a lick of paint, courtesy of Arnolfini sponsor, Farrow and Ball.

We’ve extended the opening hours and refreshed the food menu of sandwiches, salads and light bites. The menu will be further developed later in the year by the Bristol Beer factory team so watch this space! 

It goes without saying that you’ll be able to enjoy our locally brewed beers as well as a selection of other drinks.  

Here’s what our MD, Simon Bartlett has to say:    

“Our collaboration with The Arnolfini represents the joining of two Bristol independent favourites, combining one of the city’s best cultural destinations with our great portfolio of beers. Through this partnership we intend to make the Café Bar one of the best venues Bristol has to offer.”

So pop on down to the waterfront and enjoy a beer and a bite to eat! Look out for details on our upcoming Arnolfini Café launch party….coming soon!

We’d love to know what you think of our new space, tweet us or drop us a line at enquiries@bristolbeerfactory.co.uk

Bristol Beer Factory at Arnolfini opening times:

Mon:  10am – 6pm
Tue:  10am – 8pm
Wed: 10am – 8pm
Thu:  10am – 8pm
Fri:  10am – 10pm
Sat:  10am – 10pm
Sun:  10am – 6pm

www.arnolfini.org.uk/visit/cafe-bar

Follow @arnolfinicafe on Twitter or Instagram for all the up to date news!

Welcome to the team The Newells and Eggletons!

We’re so excited to announce that we have attracted 2 new high profile local investors, The Newell and Eggleton Families to Bristol Beer Factory. Helping to deliver exciting new plans for the Brewery, they join the original co – joint founders Simon Bartlett and George Ferguson and our other current directors, Sam Burrows and Natasha Miller.

We’ve been producing great beer for over 14 years with 6 beers in our current core range and a great variety of guest beers and specials coming up so watch out for them! The investment will help develop the brewery, focusing on innovation, production expansion and distribution.  We can then continue doing what we do best – brewing and serving awesome, local, independent beer.

We’ve also recently launched the Brewery Taproom on North Street (if you haven’t been you need to come down), our Beer Club (get yourself signed up) and our great new 4% session ale, Fortitude (if you haven’t tried it, try it!). Plus we have a new Cider venture launching in the Autumn…

Here’s what our MD // Co-Founder, Simon has to say: ‘‘We have reached a crucial stage in our development of needing investment to reach our full potential and chose to reach out to potential investors with the right experience to help the business grow without losing our focus on quality, service and innovation. Both George Ferguson and I have had great respect for Guy and Josh for many years and to have them as part of our forward thinking creative team is better than we could have hoped for.’

Guy and Becky led the acquisition of Butcombe Brewery so bring a huge wealth of experience to Bristol Beer Factory and comment: Bristol is a city that loves a “Taste of Independence.” With Butcombe and Bath Ales, previously the city’s two main independent breweries having been taken over by the Liberation Group and St. Austell respectively, it is left to Bristol Beer Factory to fly the independent flag. It is a very exciting time for the city of Bristol, and indeed for Bristol Beer Factory…We are thrilled to be involved.

Josh Eggleton is Chef-Patron of The Pony & Trap, founder of Salt & Malt and a director of Eat Drink Bristol Fashion. Josh is excited about the future of Bristol Beer Factory, he comments: 'Bristol Beer Factory was a great fit for me and my business portfolio. Fiercely independent, rooted in Bristol but with ambitious plans and the people involved are down to earth but hugely experienced. We are looking forward to working together to expand and grow this already amazing business'.

What a team working on a great brand. We are certainly very proud them all and we know that Bristol will be too.

 From left: Sam Burrows, Josh Eggleton, Simon Bartlett, Natasha Miller, Guy Newell, George Ferguson

From left: Sam Burrows, Josh Eggleton, Simon Bartlett, Natasha Miller, Guy Newell, George Ferguson

 

Hellos and goodbyes

Sadly as 2016 drew to a close we said goodbye to one of our senior brewers, Jonny Mills, who set off for pastures new. If you happen to stop by the Salutation Inn in Ham you might just catch him and Genevieve Kaye, our salesgirl extraordinaire, who also sadly left us at the end of last year. We wish them all the best in their new venture.

Tristan Hembrow joined us in early 2017 and has settled in quite nicely thank you, a very talented brewer who will be working closely with Steve in heading up the brewhouse team.

Anna Gilman and Tanya Hazell are manning the taps and shelves in the new Tap Room, pop in for a drink and a chat and they can advise you on the best beers for your tastebuds.

The brand new office has also been given some fresh blood in the form of Clem Elphick and Tom Clermont who are joining Sam in creating a pretty special sales team. Expect to hear their dulcet tones on the phone or in a pub near you soon!

To all our leavers, a fond farewell. To all the newbies, a very warm welcome.

 

NEW BOTTLE LABELS!

After many months of deliberating, designing, playing with poster paints, discussing and designing some more we are now finally ready to launch our new range of bottle labels.
We are very proud of the new designs, thanks to Miller Design for taking us from adolescence into the world of grown up.
The new labels will be released into the trade brand by brand as we make more beer and can attach these little beauties to new stock. Watch this space to find out which is the latest brand to receive a makeover and be released into a shop or bar near you.

In celebration of our new styled bottle labels we are having a little fun competition each time we release a brand. The first person to send in a photo of that brand in the place they bought it to enquiries@bristolbeerfactory.co.uk will win a case of that brand.
As only Ultimate Stout is currently out in the trade, the first person to get a photo to us of an Ultimate Stout bottle with the new label will win a case delivered to their door....lucky you!!

 

BREWERY OPEN DAY - 3rd DECEMBER 2016

 

It's Open Day time again!

What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than to visit us at our annual Brewery Open Day?!
As usual we will be providing a great selection of beer on tap and keg, Sam's (in)famous stout stew and quite possibly some goodies courtesy of Marks Bread, all complimentary of course.

Your chance to stock up for Christmas, the shop will be open selling our range of brewery t-shirts and the usual bottles and mixed cases of beer, all at special Open Day prices.

It's usually a pretty great day and if last year is anything to go by we will be packed to the rafters!

See you here!

REINHEITSGEBOT 2016 at the BARLEY MOW

 

REINHEITSGEBOT

Now in its third year, the much anticipated return of our celebration of glorious German beer, food and music is drawing close, and this year we will be extending the celebrations all week!

Kicking off proceedings on Saturday 1st October will be the party: German beer on the taps, German food on the menu and German music in the air, all day and night.
Throughout the rest of the week we will continue to bring you fresh, crisp steins of German beer as well as serving you a delicious, hearty German menu.

As for the beer, I’m not at liberty to disclose such information yet but expect tasty libations from such breweries as Hacker-Pschorr, Paulaner, Ayinger, Augustiner, Bayreuther, Schlenkerla, Schlosser, Schneider Weisse and Tegernseer.

So break out your dirndls and iron your lederhosen in preparation and check out our Facebook page for more updates.

Factoberfest 2016

9 - 11 September 2016

The year-long wait is over - it’s Factoberfest-time!

Bristol Beer Factory are putting together a dazzling line up of some of the very best craft beers from far and wide. Covering everything from hoppy IPAs to stouts and porters via saisons and wheat beers, there will be something for every kind of beer enthusiast.

With live blues, Americana and country music, plus top notch food and stuff for the kids, there are plenty of reasons why you’ll want to stay all weekend.

Kicking off with Bristol Eats street food on Friday night.

Friday: 5pm - Midnight
Saturday: Noon - Midnight
Sunday: Noon - 11pm

Check our Facebook event page or follow us on twitter to keep up with our news and find out more.

AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY at the BARLEY MOW

 

America is great! If it wasn't for America we wouldn't have such great things as: freedom fries, Donald Trump, the supersize size and sub-prime mortgages but most importantly we wouldn't have such amazingly good beer. America revolutionised beer drinking and in honour of this we will be serving a deluge of insanley good examples of the stuff on keg, bottles and cans. Not only this but our menu will go decidedly stateside.

The party is going to kick off on Saturday 9th July with music from Ben "Jammin" Franklin but the beers and the food will be going on throughout the week.

Watch the Facebook event page for updates....

SIBA SOUTH WEST BEER FESTIVAL 2016

 

Milk Stout gets Gold and Independence gets Bronze at Tuckers Maltings 2016.

Once again Milk Stout does the business at the annual SIBA South West Tuckers Maltings Festival winning Gold in the bottled stout category.
This is the 7th year that we have been in the top 3 since 2007 - some achievement by any standards.

Independence won Bronze in its category for cask which again shows that it is such solid product in cask and bottle (it won bronze in bottle 2015 at the same event). Just wait till you have tried it in keg!!!

BARLEY MOW WINS RUNNER UP BRISTOL CAMRA PUB OF THE YEAR!

‘This if fantastic news and a very well deserved award for the wonderful team at The Mow. Tim, Maz, Jimmy and the rest of the staff have worked their socks off over the past year to create an absolute gem of a pub. The mix of fantastic local, national and international beers, great wholesome food and exceptional customer service has worked brilliantly. It is the pub you would want at the end of your road!’
Simon Bartlett, Director

Milk Stout turns 10!

It was 10 years ago in March 2016 that Chris Thurgeson, our brewer at the time, came up the idea of recreating a beer brewed in this very building over 100 years ago.  The beer was our now nationally acclaimed Milk Stout.

We initially thought it would be a one-off brew for a bit of fun to recreate some history for the 2006 CAMRA Bristol Beer Festival.  To our great delight, it was voted the beer of the festival.  Needless to say we carried on brewing it and it won beer of the festival again the following year.  Since then it has surpassed our wildest dreams and in the 10 years we have been brewing it has won 19 major awards and become National Champion in both cask and bottle.  A bottle has even made it all the way to Everest base camp to the delight of the locals!

It is now available in cask, bottle and keg and makes up one of our core range of beers.

Adrian Tierney-Jones, one of Britain’s most noted beer writers, stated – ‘I believe the brewing of the (BBF) Milk Stout in 2006 marks the start of Bristol’s beer renaissance, a time when BBF and the breweries that followed showed that they were not content to come up with golden ales, bitters and the odd wheat beer and stout. By looking back the brewery was looking forward.’