Five Points announce charity partnership

Five Points announce annual charity partnership

The Hackney-based brewery commits to fundraising efforts and staff paid time to support its local charities

 

The East London-based Five Points Brewing Company has announced the start of a new annual charity partnership programme. Each year the company will partner with two local charities, fundraising for them and helping to raise their profile across the year. Brewery staff are encouraged to have an input: they will be canvassed for their suggestions on which charities will be supported that year, and can complete a day’s paid voluntary work on behalf of their chosen charity.

This year, it is two charities local to the brewery that have been chosen to receive support. The Hackney Winter Night Shelter, a homeless shelter running during the coldest winter months, and Headway East London, a charity supporting people affected by brain injury, will both receive fundraising support across the year.

Ed Mason, founder and Director of The Five Points, said: “Since founding The Five Points in 2013, we have strived to be a socially responsible business and employer, based in our local community. The community has taken us into their hearts, and it’s important for us to give something back.

“Our ethos is not just about ‘the bottom line’. While of course this is important, we believe that businesses also have a responsibility to both the local and wider community. Supporting two partner charities each year is a great way for us to be able to demonstrate this commitment and responsibility.”

The Five Points has also improved its Charity and Community Support Policy. All staff members will receive an additional day’s paid leave to work on a charity or community project. Staff will be working with the 2018 partner charities, The Hackney Winter Night Shelter and Headway East London, but are welcome to work on their own projects if there’s an issue or organisation close to their heart.

The Five Points organises a large number of events every year; in 2017, they organised over 100, hosting and participating in events and festivals around London and across the UK. Their first 2018 fundraising event, the Tryanuary Hackney Beer Hop, is taking place on Saturday 27th January, and will visit five different breweries and craft beer-spots in Hackney Wick, including the Five Points’ craft beer bar Mason & Company. The event is now sold-out, and all ticket and raffle proceeds, plus donations on the day, will go to the Hackney Winter Night Shelter.

You can read more about The Five Points’ charity support on their blog, and stay up to date with future fundraising events on their website, Twitter, Facebook and Eventbrite pages. If you would like to read more about the two charities, or sign up to volunteer, visit www.headwayeastlondon.org and www.hwns.org.


CAMRA to embrace kegged and canned 'quality' beer

CAMRA to embrace ‘quality’ kegged and canned beer

The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) is set to widen its remit to represent drinkers of quality beers, ciders and perries of all types, as well as moving its focus beyond traditional pubs, if its members approve recommendations put before them in April

 

We’ll have some updated news and opinions soon but first we wanted to share the press release as soon as we can in full that advocates that CAMRA, as part of its far-reaching Revitalisation, it will embrace ‘quality’ beer and not just real ale.

STARTS

The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) is set to widen its remit to represent drinkers of quality beers, ciders and perries of all types, as well as moving its focus beyond traditional pubs, if its members approve recommendations put before them in April.

While continuing to advocate that real ale is the pinnacle of the brewer’s craft, the Campaign’s wider focus will mean all drinkers who enjoy a range of beers, ciders and perries will feel welcome in the organisation.

If the changes are approved, the Campaign will work to provide an enhanced education and information experience for its members, and all drinkers who attend CAMRA festivals, to help them appreciate and learn about all types and styles of beer, cider and perry – and make informed decisions about what constitutes “quality”.

While campaigning for the continued production and consumption of real ale, cider and perry will remain at the core of CAMRA’s objectives, members will be asked to consider changes to the organisation’s Articles of Association which will widen the range of types of beer that it represents – including quality beer which does not meet the organisation’s definition of “real ale”.

The recommendations also propose that as a result of widening its scope of interest CAMRA will be able to represent and engage with all beer drinkers and with all pubgoers, irrespective of what they choose to drink, increasing its ability to campaign in the interests of a much larger constituency.

This broadening of consumer representation will also see CAMRA demonstrate an interest in and lobby for a much wider range of on-trade outlets. While the organisation will continue to campaign for the preservation of the traditional British pub, it will also encourage on-trade outlets of all kinds to serve quality beer, cider and perry. CAMRA will continue to advocate drinking in public social venues, rather than the increasing practise of consumers buying their drinks from supermarkets for home consumption.

The proposed changes may take the form of:

  • CAMRA festivals offering a wider range of quality beers, ciders and perries in all formats

  • CAMRA engaging with drinkers of all types – with the hope of taking them on a ‘journey of discovery’ of why real ale, cider and perry is particularly special

  • CAMRA supporting members in their appreciation of beer, their ability to both recognise quality products and campaign effectively for them to be stocked in pubs and bars

  • CAMRA providing information about all kinds of beer, not just real ale, as well as opportunities for members to learn more about brewing and the different types and styles available to drinkers

  • CAMRA recognising a wider range of drinks and establishments in its local and national competitions

The 46-year-old consumer organisation launched a root and branch review of its purpose and objectives, called the Revitalisation Project, at the start of 2016. CAMRA’s 190,000 members have been involved and consulted throughout the process and will soon have their say on whether the resulting proposals for change are adopted.

Seeking approval for their recommendations, the Campaign’s leadership argue that a wider appeal and closer connection with the current revolution in beer and bars will enable the organisation to connect with modern-day beer drinkers and pub goers. This in turn will strengthen CAMRA’s campaigning voice: enabling it to increase the already-considerable influence it exerts on the Government and industry decision-makers.

CAMRA chairman Colin Valentine said: “It’s always been important that our members have had a say throughout this review process and we’re now at the point where we’ll be giving all our members the chance to vote on the final Revitalisation Project recommendations.

“The vote will be held at our Annual General Meeting, in Coventry in April. In the months between now and then we’ll be making sure members can access the full details of the changes we’re recommending, along with the analysis of the impacts and potential opportunities the changes will have.

“My colleagues and I will be making ourselves available at meetings around the country over the next three months so that members can ask us questions about the proposed changes. We’ll also be making sure that we’re available online at frequent intervals. At the end of this process our aim is to make sure that every member has been given the opportunity to learn more about the proposals before they voted.

“Our recommendations mark an important stage in CAMRA’s long history. We recognise that the beer and pub landscape has changed and continues to evolve, and our place in that landscape has changed as well. We’re determined to make sure that we continue to change and evolve so that we are relevant to drinkers of all types and continue to offer a compelling reason for people to join our organisation.”

ENDS


Yeastie Boys announce new Head Brewer

Yeastie Boys announce new head brewer

Former Thornbridge and Buxton brewer James Kemp will join the Yeastie Boys UK operation

 

New Zealand brewing company Yeastie Boys have taken a further step toward making United Kingdom their major focus by announcing the signing of renowned brewer James Kemp from Manchester’s Marble Brewery.

From mid-March James – a respected former brewer of Thornbridge Brewery and Buxton Brewery – will take over the lead brewing role for the small multinational New Zealand company.


Yeastie Boys’ irreverent ales – founded down under in 2008 and now brewed in New Zealand, Australia, and United Kingdom – have made a considerable impact in the UK since arriving in 2015 and the business recently announced that they had tripled UK sales in the 2017 calendar year.

“We’ve got off to a cracking start in the UK, from absolutely nothing, but we’re always thinking of the future and this was the perfect place to bring someone on board” Yeastie Boys’ founder Stu McKinlay explained.

“Bringing James into the team is an investment in our brand as well as the product. We’ve long been known for innovation but in the UK we’ve focused on our core range products, only bringing in very small volumes of seasonals and specials from New Zealand.

“As our reach expands nationally and into Europe, and often outside the traditional ‘craft beer’ venues, it’s important to us that we continue to excite and delight the independent trade and that needs to happen from here in the UK rather than back in New Zealand. I can’t think of anyone better to do that than James Kemp. I’ve known him for over a decade and his dedication to innovation and quality make him one of the very best brewers that I know.”

James Kemp said: “I’ve been a fanboy of Yeastie Boys since I first tried Pot Kettle Black almost ten years ago and I’ve always considered them to be one of the most exciting and edgy breweries in the world. I’m really looking forward to having a lot of fun making great beer and helping take them to the next level.

“We’ve not mapped out an exact plan of what we’ll brew, yet, as we really want to let James focus all his energy on his last couple of months at Marble” added Stu, “but expect a good dose of easily accessible seasonal beers, possibly with melon balls, followed by a really exciting long-term focus on elegant and very special beers.”

Yeastie Boys – who celebrate their tenth year in 2018 – are now just over two years into in brewing in UK and are a year into production in Australia.
 
“Exporting our products around the world is becoming less of an option as we see local beer scenes really exploding in terms of both diversity and quality,” said the UK-based McKinlay, “The setup of Yeastie Boys UK and Yeastie Boys Australia allows us to build a base making local beers with a New Zealand accent. We’ve got to the point where we really needed someone far better than me to oversee all this production and James is the perfect person for that job!”


Celebrate Harry and Megan's wedding with Windsor Knot beer

Celebrate the Royal Wedding with Windsor Knot

In easily the best tie-in to Harry and Megan’s impending marriage we’ve seen so far is the Windsor Knot beer from Windsor & Eton Brewery

 

Windsor & Eton Brewery has a Royal connection based on proximity alone, but in a clever tie-in with the Royal wedding, the brewery has released a beer called Harry & Megan’s Windsor Knot using barley grown on the Royal farms. 

The beer is a special limited edition release of their best-selling Windsor Knot, which was first brewed for the marriage of Harry’s brother, Will. Just like the original Windsor Knot, this pale ale will be the only royal wedding beer brewed in Windsor.

The new beer was inspired by the couple’s first public appearance together at the Invictus Games in Toronto last year.

Master Brewer and Co-Founder Paddy Johnson explains: “We’ve really had a lot of fun developing this new beer. We wanted to create a beer that captured something of that first appearance.  We use a special blend of British hops called Invicta in recognition of Prince Harry’s role in creating the Invictus Games, combined with some great American West Coast hops. As with all our beers, we use barley grown locally on the Royal Farms right here in Windsor and as a finishing touch, we are using champagne yeast. Marrying these ingredients creates a new Pale Ale that is young, fresh and full of character.”

Co-Founder Will Calvert talks more about the design: “When Harry & Meghan tie the knot it will be very much a modern marriage of equals as well as being a celebration of their British and American nationalities. Each of them have causes that they care deeply about such as the environment, equal rights and the rehabilitation of injured servicemen and women. We chose the interlocking symbols to reflect the strength and support they give each other.”


Harry & Meghan Windsor Knot will be available in both 330ml bottles at 4.5% ABV and in cask at 4% ABV and the first orders are shipped on Tuesday 3rd April.


Beer Moment of the Year: Daniel Neilson

Beer Moment of the Year: Daniel Neilson

The pub. The wonderful, cosy, convivial pub made the beer moment of the year for Original Gravity’s publisher Daniel Neilson

 

Life is too short to be indulgent when it comes to writing about beer, but as the year seems certain to immolate itself once more, Original Gravity has decided that its self-imposed rule about indulgence can be broken for once — here, then, is the team’s beer moment (s) of the year. We’ll see you in 2018, we’ve got a few things we going to do that we think we will like (you might as well, but we certainly will).

For our next moment, it’s the founder Daniel Neilson

Daniel Neilson, Original Gravity’s Founder

I’ve been very lucky this year to meet a great many people in the beer industry who I deeply admire. Meeting Jamie in the lovely Highland setting of his brewery Fyne Ales was a highlight. Other visits, including Siren, Burning Sky, Wiper and True, Lost & Grounded, Thornbridge and many more, were all united by one thing: the unerring, relentless passion of beer. 

My beer moment of the year, however, was a little closer to home. 

They call it the Cathedral, Harvey’s Brewery in Lewes. I was there on an ‘away day’ with Pete Brown, Adrian Tierney-Jones and the designer Adam McNaught-Davis. After a  planning session and a tour of the ‘Cathedral’ we all retired to the John Harvey Tavern for lunch. And it was there, as I took a long draught on Harvey’s Sussex Best Bitter and looked around the table, that I marvelled the power of a humble drink in a humble pub. Beer had brought together great brewers, great beer writers and great friends. I sat down again and the banter continued.  


Beer Moment of the Year: Pete Brown

Beer Moment of the Year: Pete Brown

That was the year that was. And for Original Gravity’s Editor at Large Pete Brown, the great beer moments of the year happened on a trip to America

 

Life is too short to be indulgent when it comes to writing about beer, but as the year seems certain to immolate itself once more, Original Gravity has decided that its self-imposed rule about indulgence can be broken for once — here, then, is the team’s beer moment (s) of the year. We’ll see you in 2018, we’ve got a few things we going to do that we think we will like (you might as well, but we certainly will).

For our second moment, it’s our Editor-at-Large Pete Brown

Pete Brown, Original Gravity Editor-at-large

My beer moment of the year has to be the mini-book tour of North America I undertook to promote my new book, Miracle Brew. Most of my events took place in breweries, and my publisher is in Vermont, so, apart from flogging a few books, I got to visit some of the most exciting breweries around right now.

I kicked off with a talk at the Brooklyn Brewery, after which Brooklyn brewmaster Garrett Oliver dragged out some of his ‘ghost bottles’ for us to taste — strong, experimental beers aged in wood with a variety of different yeast and microorganisms that start to blur the boundary between beer and wine.

A few days later I was at Hill Farmstead in Vermont, watching the queue for growler fills of their New England IPAs and Belgian style beers grow outside an hour before the taproom doors opened. And then up to Toronto, a city I’ve loved for a long time, that’s now starting to transcend its beery influences and excel in styles that are different from what you might find in bars elsewhere. In 2018, keep an eye out for the Canadians.

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Tomorrow evening Original Gravity’s Publisher Daniel Neilson picks his moment of the year.


Beer Moment of the Year: Adrian Tierney-Jones

Beer Moment of the Year: Adrian Tierney-Jones

What was that? Oh, it was only 2017 passing by. Still, Original Gravity’s Editor and Beer Writer of the Year 2017, Adrian Tierney-Jones, picks out one great moment of the year

 

Life is too short to be indulgent when it comes to writing about beer, but as the year seems certain to immolate itself once more, Original Gravity has decided that its self-imposed rule about indulgence can be broken for once — here, then, is the team’s beer moment (s) of the year. We’ll see you in 2018, we’ve got a few things we going to do that we think we will like (you might as well, but we certainly will).

First up, it’s Editor Adrian Tierney-Jones

Adrian Tierney-Jones, Original Gravity Editor (and Beer Writer of the Year, I thought I’d just get that in)

No notepad, no laptop, no pen or pencil, no smartphone snapping away, no blog post or deadline, and certainly no Tweet suggesting that this is the life, but the evening that I and fellow journalist Joe Stange spent at Foerster Feine Biere in the south of Berlin lingers long in the memory. A neighbourhood bar (was it on a corner?), popular, unremarkable in its looks, but a home from home for beers with a Franconian heart. No notes were taken, just the simple pleasure of beer and conversation with a friend, and the rich honeyed tones of draft Schönramer Saphir Bock, to which I tried to return to the following evening, but was told with a smile by the barman that we’d drunk it all up the night before. Such is the simple pleasure of a beer moment well won.

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Tomorrow evening Original Gravity’s Editor at Large (and 2016’s Beer Writer of the Year) Pete Brown picks his moment of the year.


Siren opens ten line Tap Yard

Siren Craft Brew opens new tap yard

Berkshire-based Siren Craft Brew is set to officially launch a new Tap Yard at their brewery in Finchampstead

 

Berkshire-based Siren Craft Brew are set to officially launch a new Tap Yard at their brewery in Finchampstead. The ten-line, 50sqm, 100-person Tap Yard will open to the public officially on Friday 15th December and feature ten dedicated lines.

Siren will launch with core beers, West Coast IPA ‘Sound Wave’ and Loose Leaf Pale Ale ‘Yu Lu’. They will also be pouring Grapefruit Sour IPA ‘Pompelmocello’; Pale Ale ‘Suspended In Rye’; Breakfast Stout ‘Broken Dream’; Rye IPA ‘Ryesing Tides’; Winter Double IPA ‘Forest For the Trees’; Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Porter with Tamarind ‘Sheltered Spirit’; Imperial Stout with Coffee & Figs ‘Turkish’ (Project Barista); and Irish Dry Stout ‘Afterlight’.

Siren’s Tap Yard, is based at Marino Way, Finchampstead, Berkshire and will open from 12-8 on Friday and 12-7 Saturdays pouring the freshest Siren beers all year round. Tap Yard fridges will house every Siren beer including every new collaborations with the likes of Brooklyn’s Other Half, Spain’s Naparbier and neighbours Elusive Brewing.

Siren’s Andy Nowlan commented:

“This is a really exciting development for Siren that we’ve been planning for some time. Our kegs are filled and immediately moved to cold storage, where the same space acts as the Tap Yard cellar. This means we’re serving super fresh beer at all times. In addition, we’ll now be able to run larger scale parties more regularly, offer event space for local businesses and act as a centre-point for the local community.”

The new Tap Room caps an exciting four years for Siren. Opening in 2013, Ratebeer has named Siren Best New Brewery in the UK (2013), second Best New Brewery in the World (2013), Best Brewery in the UK (2014) and a Top 100 Breweries in the World (2015). 30 minutes from Reading city centre, the closest railway station to Siren’s Tap Yard is Wokingham, the site is serviced by Reading Busses’ ‘Leopard’ route, Sat Navs should use RG40 4RF.


Read Original Gravity% Issue 15 for free here

Do you know where you are, do you know where you’re from, do you know where you are going? Three vital questions that people ask themselves time and time again as life rolls on, but when it comes to beer this triumvirate of brain-teasers is often forgotten. Beer can be made anywhere, it doesn’t matter if the beer that was born in that town is now made in that town 100 miles away. On the other hand there’s almost a mystical connection between a beer and its sense of place, which, let’s be honest, isn’t always essential to the beer (a recent conversation with one of this issue’s contributors Boak and Bailey about the excellent quality of Young’s Ordinary, which has long  gone from its London home, springs to mind), but it’s this mysticism, this sense of the other, this sense of beer being like an oak with its long tendrils of roots glued to the very earth where a tiny acorn once fell, is what our writers have tried to convey in this issue.

Roger Protz has done a Michael Parkinson and interviewed an IPA (born in London and grew up in Burton); Pete Brown argues that beer does have a sense of place and also visits a brewery with its roots and beers firmly in the west Flemish countryside; Daniel Neilson rhapsodies over Wiper and True’s English Saison, which is also reviewed elsewhere; Emma Inch visits Brighton FC and drinks Harvey’s Sussex Bitter, perhaps the first beer that springs to mind when the South Downs hoves into view.

Elsewhere, Jessica Mason remembers her early exposure to the pub, and Copenhagen inspires its own sense of place. Beer meets wine, barley wine goes beneath the microscope and we’ve got some cool beers reviewed to whet your thirst. Oh and a little bit of news — November 13 sees the launch of our new website, which will feature exclusive stories and features that won’t be in the printed edition and there’s a regular monthly newsletter, which I would highly recommend you sign up for, so mark 13/11 in your diary!

Chin chin

Adrian Tierney-Jones, Editor