Nadia, Marketing and Social Media Manager
My ‘gateway’ beers into craft beer were Samuel Smith’s Organic Cherry beer and Lindeman’s Kriek so I can never resist anything cherry-flavoured, whether that’s beer, dessert or cocktails, as it’s my favourite fruit and we really did pack a huge amount of cherry flavour into Kirsch Russell that remind me of these classic cherry beers. From using different cherry types, accentuated by the tart sour base and cinnamon for a subtle warmth throughout and was my go-to drink of choice during festival season as a welcome break from the onslaught of dank IPAs and sickly Imperial Stouts. Looking forward to this making a return in 2022!
Jacob, Finance Manager
My stand out beer is definitely The Consultant. Having only got into craft beer over the last 12 months this was my first ever NEIPA. It was eye opening as to what the craft beer industry is all about. A hazy, intensely fruity drink that was completely new to anything I had ever tried, and at 7.5%ABV it certainly did not taste anywhere near the strength. Proper danger beer!
Tom, Head Brewer
My favourite beer so far has been Red Danson. Red IPA is a style that is close to my heart, as it was one of the first types of beer that I commercially brewed during my time as an apprentice brewer at Dorking Brewery. Hoppy and Bitter, like a West Coast IPA, but with heaps of toffee and dark fruit character make Red Danson super drinkable without being sweet or heavy. The cask variant was a true winner!
Thom, Sales Executive
This year I absolutely loved the DIPA brewed by Roddy our old brewer as his leaving gift to us. It has the holy trinity of hops in it giving it a super dank and deliciousness and at 9.0% it really sorts you out when you have a hangover!
Tony, Sales Director
Salted Caramel Tonkoko, a great addition to the Tonkoko range and it was great to see people enjoying it at Leeds International Beer Fest, and coming back for it amongst the great line up at the event. I think the punchiest variant of Tonk we have ever produced and a great addition to the lineup that we will see again soon.
Wayne, Co-Founder and Managing Director
It’s been a strong year but I’d really have to go for It’s This Way Tony on cask. It was great to start increasing cask production post Covid restriction and this was the first seasonal cask in a long time, so I really enjoyed a fresh pint of Amarillo pale.
Ant, Digital Content & Design Manager
There’s been so many to choose from this year, some of the most recent beers have been so good, but I’m going to go back to a great brew from the early part of 2021. We released a brand new core beer to cover the sessional pale market in a brew called Lupu Lion. True, it’s not a super crazy stout or a sour with a billion fruits in it, but as a standalone go to beer that you can smash back day in day out without getting tired of it’s hard to beat.
Dominic, The Market tap, Pocklington, Manager
As a huge fan of Imperial Stouts and Whisky/Whiskey this was a wonderful treat for me. The Empress Tonkoko is a beautiful thing to start with and the Buffalo Trace Edition was also very good, but the Heaven Hill had the edge for me. Perhaps as Heaven Hill Whiskey isn’t aged for as long as Buffalo Trace, the barrel had more flavour left to give to the beer! The symbiosis was incredible for such complex flavours. It is impossible to know where the sweetness from the malt meets the chocolate of the cacao and the subtle toffee notes of the caramelised wood sugars from the charred American Oak Barrel. You cannot say where the vanilla and Tonka end and the lignin (the chemical in the oak responsible for the vanilla flavours in bourbon) take over. But what the barrel ageing adds to the Empress so perfectly complements what is already there, that rather than making it different it is like an image bought into sharper focus revealing an extra level of detail.
Andy, Events Manager
Really love The Ghost Dimension which we did for our birthday beer pack. This Freaky Franchise brew was made with Fierce who we’ve always had a great relationship with. The heat given by the chilli in this brew really brings out the chocolate richness perfectly, rounding everything of beautifully. Reyt nice drop that!
Alison, HR Director
I always love the sour beers we produce with Goose Willis being one of my all time favourites. This year we’ve had so many good sours that it was hard to choose my favourite, the big version Goose Lee is awesome and Granny Smith’s Brambling Habit was incredible but I will stick with my all time fave, Goose Willis.