Saturday 3 June 2023

Start-up brewer shows Spooky quality

One of several new breweries I met at BrewLDN was Spookton Brew Co. Based on the Wirral in Cheshire and less than a year old, it was one of the two runners-up for the festival’s Accelerator prize for best new drinks brand. 

Founder and former homebrewer Jon Pugh already has several Spookton brews under his belt, even though he doesn't have his own brewery yet – he currently uses the brewkit at Farm Yard Brew over the border in Lancashire.

It is very much a social enterprise – they donate 5p to a good cause for each can or pint they produce. Most recently Jon also did an Orange and Lemon Pale Ale for Brave Noise, the international movement which advocates for a safe and discrimination-free beer industry. Ingredients for this were donated by Crisp Malt and Lallemand Brewing, and the proceeds will go to Beers Without Beards, to help fund mentorships for women in craft beer. 

So, what about the beers? Among those pouring at Brew//LDN was No Worries If Not, which is nominally a West Coast IPA, with caramel notes, drying hoppy bitterness and a touch of toast, but also with a modern and very nice fruity-hoppy twist.

I also managed to get my hands on a couple of cans. Struggle Bus is a classic Black IPA – dry-sweet and burnt, roasty and piney, with a light malty stickiness on the finish. Lovely! After that, Spookton’s interpretation of Brave Noise is lighter, fruitier and more easy-drinking. There’s citrus and a touch of funk on the nose, then juicy-dry hops and citrus mark out this beery St Clements.

Sadly, I didn’t get to sample Octuple Threat, Jon’s 8% Double IPA, nor earlier brews such as his hazy IPA Imposter Syndrome or Gloom, his oatmeal stout, which I think are currently out of production. You can order the current range of four on Spookton’s website though, and they’re now in some bottle shops via distributor Eebria. 

No comments:

Post a Comment