December 2012 : ALLGATES BREWERY
In September it was reported that the brewery had been busy brewing seasonal beer Brigantia 4.0%, along with occasion beer Caskablanka 4.1%, plus monthly specials – single hop Southern Cross a 4.1% South Seas Pale Ale “with soft bitterness and clean spiciness” and Tutti I Cancelli Tipo a 5.1% an Italian Style Pilsener In October, Ostara, Glaziers and Southern Cross were sent to Hare & Hounds festival at Holcome Brook and California, Hopgate and Mad Monk were all entered into competitions at the SIBA Great Northern Beer Festival in Manchester.
Octobers monthly specials were Pacific Gen a 4.3% South Seas Pale Ale “A Pale Ale with tempered bitterness and flavour Samhain 4.5% a Dark Ruby Ale with “Lots of aroma from the wonderful Brambling Cross hops”.
Novembers specials were Pot Calling the Kettle, a 5.2% American style dark and rich porter and Poppy a 4.5% IPA.
Decembers saw three specials brewed, Super Alpha a 4.2% South seas Pale ale with the aroma of pine needles and lemongrass, Winter Warmer, a 4.4% ruby coloured spiced Ale and finally Sloe Stout a 7.2 complex fruit stout.
December 2012 : PROSPECT BREWERY
With the change of seasons there will be some beers disappearing for a while, including Oresome 3.8% and Golden Prospects 3.8% both summery beers, to be replaced with a new ruby beer at 4.1%, the return of Panned Out 4.0% and the brewing of Pickaxe Porter 5.0% and Clementine for Christmas. An additional supply of Amarillo hops mean that Whatever! 3.8% could continue to be brewed. Golden Prospects has now been added to the bottled range as a trial.
It has been confirmed by HIMOR group that the current brewery building will be demolished at the end of 2014 and discussions are ongoing with the local authority to find suitable new premises.
In October a second batch of Pickaxe Porter was brewed and the first batch of Clementine was brewed and sent for bottling. Giants Hall has also been brewed, along with an amber beer Tigers Eye (3.8%). Dragon Ale was also produced and a limited edition bottled beer (containing balsamic vinegar) was produced to commemorate Ellseys 80th Anniversary.
At the SIBA Great Northern Beer Festival held in Manchester, Nuty Slack was runner up in the Standard Mild category of the competitions, whilst in November Whatever! 3.8% was available in the House of Commons Strangers bar and was also voted “Peoples Pint” at the Manchester 2012 Food and Drink Festival.
December 2012 : MAYFLOWER BREWERY
Brewing continues when Alan can fit in with brewing at Burscough Brewery, and feature at the newly opened Raven. Two seasonal beers were produced Yule be lucky and Orrell Gold.
December 2012 : PROBLEM CHILD BREWERY
Planning permission has now been granted on appeal for the brewery to build a glass extension at the front of the Wayfarer on Alder Lane, Parbold. Despite being granted permission for change of use of part of the building to a microbrewery in 2010, plans were put on hold after the local council’s planning committee rejected plans for the extension which will house the brewing vessels.
An order for a 5 barrel brewery is now expected to be placed early in New Year and Rachel and Jonny Birkett hope to be up and running during early spring 2013 and will start producing recipes at home for several beers that will initially go on sale at the Wayfarer, and may then be shipped further afield.
December 2012 : WELLCROSS BREWERY
Commenced brewing at Up Holland in August 2012. At the lelm is Gary Rice, of Wapping and L1 brewery fame, along with Daryl Arrowsmith, of the Turks Head in St Helens. Amanda Roue is the apprentice brewer.
Their beers are on sale in various Merseyside outlets. “Winter” and “IPA” (both 6%) will be available at the National Winter Ales Festival.
September 2012 : ALL GATES BREWERY
The monthly special brews for June were : Nelson Sauvin Pale (4.1%), a single hopped Kiwi pale ale “with strong antipodean hop flavours” ; Golden Aeld (4.2%), “Light golden in colour with elderflower flavours predominating”. July monthly specials were : Pacific Jade (4.0%), a pale ale with strong herbal hop flavours ; Apollo (4.3%), a single hopped pale ale using American hops to give a pale amber beer, and return of a seasonal special Brigantia (4.0%).
In August the re-appearance, as a one-off, is True Blonde cask lager (4.6%), the flavours from natural cocoa nibs and mandarin peel to give a hint of orange.
A new brew, Hopgate (IPA) (4.9%) using Kiwi hops was represented at the Great British Beer Festival in the form of 3 x 18 gallons. This beer has malty sweetness and sold well, selling out early on Saturday afternoon. Favourable comments found on several blog sites describing it as “Golden colour, small white head. Aroma is fruity, floral, sweet malts with some mild bready notes. Flavour is fruity, nectary, caramelly and nice. Balanced and nice.”
The brewery are busy at present with the September specials - single hop Southern Cross and Tutti Cancelli Pils (Allgates Pils) a classic German Pils. Further staffing changes have resulted in Jonathan Provost being appointed new head brewer. There has been no progress with identification of alternative premises and nothing likely for the foreseeable future. The brewery are brewing 6 or 7 days a week.
No Amarillo hops are available until the harvest in late October after which there should be a supply for the next 12 months. In the meantime, California will be replaced by Pretoria.
Allgates have now opened their eighth pub by agreeing leasehold for The Union Arms, Castle Street, Tyldesley on a “reverse tie” deal with Thwaites Brewery. The pub will have 1 Thwaites beer and 6 handpumps for Allgates beers plus guests. At the time of writing, Sharon and David should have started serving food.
The company’s other pubs are doing really well. Their Diamond Jubilee initiative was successful with 60 beers that went well and hopefully a repeat next year. Crooke Hall is doing excellent food with Greg and Jenny moving over from Hindley pushing the real ale scene. A beer, boat and music festival has been planned for 21st to 23rd September with over 35 beers, 12 bands and canal boats with a large marquee and beer tent in car park.
September 2012 : PROSPECT BREWERY
The brewery remains busy and an additional fermentor has now been installed, increasing brewing capacity by another 14%. They have recently completed entry forms for Great Northern beer competition (SIBA) being held in Manchester in October and will be entering 7 or 8 beers in various categories.
The Brewery Bar still opens as usual Thursday and Friday afternoons from 4:00 p.m.and continues to be busy. However, the current premises are affected by the potential building of 500 houses on the site after the current lease finishes in December 2014 leaving Patsy and John searching for new premises if the plans are passed, as seems likely.
The Silver Tally pub is going very well and is now open daily 12 noon to 11pm. They have been approached to take on a second pub in the Wigan area and Patsy and John are currently considering this option.
September 2012 : MAYFLOWER BREWERY
Continue to brew using their 2.5-barrel brewery plant at Sandbrook Road, Orrell, but no further updates from husband and wife team Alan and Tracy Branagan. Mayflower continues to supply a number of outlets in the North West, including the close-by Delph Tavern.
Also, Alan still continues brewing at Burscough Brewery.
September 2012 : PROBLEM CHILD BREWERY
Planning permission has now been granted for a new brewery at The Wayfarer in Parbold. Further details in next edition of Swiggin.
June 2012 : ALLGATES BREWERY
Due to a shortage of the specific hops used to brew the popular ‘California’ bitter, supply for the next 12 months will be limited to Allgates own pubs. Therefore, they have re-introduced Pretoria and Ostara to fill the gap in the market.
Four beers were on sale at the National Winter Ales Festival, including Sloe Stout. Seasonal beer for April to June is Celtic Pale (4%). ‘Occasional’ beers are Caskablanca (4.1%), Deux Citra (4.2%), Porteresque (4.4%), Shimla IPA (5.5%), Hung, Drawn & Portered (5.2%), and Reverend Ray (4.6%).
Monthly specials are : Kohatu (4.1%) - a single hop beer using New Zealand hops, refreshing fruit and pine aromas ; Crooked Beak (4.5%) - named after a USA NW tribal mask ‘Crooked Beak Of Heaven’ brewed with lager malt, low-colour Maris Otter malt and Glacire & Magnum aroma hops giving the beer a clean fresh taste ; Motoeka Gold (4.0%) - South Seas pale ale with strong antipodean hop flavours ; Ahtanum (4.3%) - a single hopped American pale ale ; Beltane (5.7%) - a Black Country style ruby mild first brewed in 2010 as WMD (Weapons Of Mash Destruction).
John Woodhead has now left Allgates and moved to a position with the Burscough Brewing Company.
June 2012 : MAYFLOWER BREWERY
The brewery has moved next door and are now in Unit 2 behind the Delph Tavern at Tontine. They are hoping to install a brewery bar in the future for brewery tours. February’s special was Born To Be Mild (3.6% ABV) - a chestnut mild made with English Fuggles hops. It was very popular, so it’s likely to be brewed again.
Mayflower’s first batch of Lancashire Stout fudge, made by Connie’s Kitchen in Pemberton, is proving popular and will be available in future at some of their regular outlets, beer festivals etc.
Brewer, Alan Branagan, is currently working part time at Burscough Brewery.
June 2012 : PROSPECT BREWERY
Contracts have been signed for a new pub. So, the rumours of the location have now been overtaken by the news that The Foresters Arms at Shevington Moor will soon become “The Silver Tally”, Prospect’s first pub.
The brewery and bar both remain busy, and the brewery bar will remain open when the new pub opens.
A recent brew added to the increasing list of beers is Golden Prospects (3.8%, 1038 ABV). This is expected to become a regular brew. Dragon Ale (4.4%, 1042 ABV) - a golden beer brewed with ginger has been available for the last month and is usually available until the end of May.
Prospect recently sent beers to the Newton-le-Willows Beer Festival, at Newtons Sports Club, which is organised by the local Rotary Club.
Venus Project, the society of brewsters that Patsy is involved with, created another brew on 21st April at the ZeroDegrees brewery in Reading. You can follow the ladies on facebook - Project Venus UK & Eire.
Liam Taylor has joined the brewery as general assistant, his predecessor going to pastures new.
June 2012 : JONES BREWERY
Confirmation that they have now stopped brewing
February 2012 : ALL GATES BREWERY
Allgates are still brewing to capacity and popularity of their beers mean that more guest beers are being bought for Allgates-owned pubs.
Like many breweries, crop problems have meant they can only source limited quantities of the American Amarillo hop in the next year, which will affect the production of their number one seller, California. Allgates are therefore restricting distribution of California to their own pubs. The same hop is used by Prospect in “Whatever” which it is said is likely to be brewed once a month rather than once a week until the supply position improves.
Allgates will have 4 beers on sale at the National Winter Ales Festival : - Pretoria a 3.9% golden ale, Sloe Stout 7.2% , NZ Cascade a 4.3% best bitter and their SIBA Gold Award winning Strong Ale, 7.1% Mad Monk.
In November Wigan and Makerfield’s Labour MP’s Lisa Nandy and Yvonne Fovargue dropped into the Allgates pub, The Anvil in Dorning Street, Wigan to offer their support to landlord Ian Thorpe and the pub industry as a whole.
The visit was part of the House of Commons ‘MP’s In Pubs’ initiative, which saw Lisa & Yvonne working on the bar to experience life as a publican and to allow customers to have their pint pulled by their local party representative.
February 2012 : PROSPECT BREWERY
Over at Standish the Prospect team have now gone past brewing their millionth pint, not bad for a part timer who started in a garage!
Clementine 5% went on sale at the end of November and was soon snapped up well before Christmas, at Wigan Business awards that took place at Kilhey Court, Patsy and team won the SME (small to medium enterprise) of the year.
In January Prospect Brewery hosted the 4th Brewster collaboration beer as part of Project Venus, a project inspired by the Pink Boots Society in the USA, to promote women into the UK brewing industry. No less than 15 Brewsters (Females brewers) produced a 3.8% golden beer called Venus Gold that will be launched at Port Street Beer House on 1st February.
In December a new seasonal called Nutcracker at 3.9% was brewed, whilst a Diamond IPA (6.0%) is due to be brewed in January, and the website has been updated including photos of some memorable moments from their short history.
The brewery bar continues to be popular on Thursday and Friday evenings.
February 2012 : MAYFLOWER BREWERY
Mayflower are said to brewing to capacity in their new Up Holland home, a Christmas brew “Yule be Lucky” previously brewed as a 5% dark spicy beer, was so popular another batch is due to be brewed.
February 2012 : JONES BREWERY
Jones Brewery appear to have stopped brewing for the time being at least as Principal Neil Jones has been rumoured to have taken up a job offer that was “too good to miss”. Hopefully we will be able to clarify in due course.
February 2012 : PROBLEM CHILD BREWERY
No progress it appears at Problem Child Parbold due to continued planning problems
February 2012 : BURSCOUGH BREWING COMPANY
Although slightly outside our branch area, the Burscough Brewing Company has been making its presence felt across the region and their beers can be regularly found in quite a few Wigan pubs. The brewery has been in operation since November 2010 and is sited in the grounds of the popular Hop Vine pub, right in the centre of Burscough. What’s more, their Sales Manager (Robin Gibson) is an active member of Wigan CAMRA Branch.