Breweries collaborate to support pubs in quiet month

Oli Watts of Watts & Co. alongside Norfolk Brewhouse’s Head Brewer Bruce Ash. ( right to left). Pic

Oli Watts of Watts & Co. alongside Norfolk Brewhouse’s Head Brewer Bruce Ash. ( right to left). Picture: The Norfolk Brewhouse - Credit: Archant

Brewers from Norfolk and Suffolk are hoping to tempt people into pubs in January with a new ale, which combines two styles of beer into one.

The Norfolk Brewhouse, based in Hindringham, teamed up Watts & Co Brewery, a nano-brewery from Debenham, in Suffolk, to create a new beer named Belguique IPA.

Oli Watts from Watts & Co Brewery said: “In terms of creating a new style out of two we wanted to take from a typically Belgian style ale – fruity, spicy, sweet flavours and bring in to that the big hoppy flavours of an American IPA.”

Included in the recipe is heritage Norfolk Chevallier malt, which Mr Watts said adds “nice sweet biscuit tones as well as a bit of local interest.”

The collaboration between Mr Watts and David Holliday of The Norfolk Brewhouse is part of a campaign launched by pubs and brewers, called Tryanuary. The goal of the campaign is to encourage new and innovative products during January, a month where people typically avoid the pubs.

“Pubs always get a bit of a raw deal in January as they face the impact of regulars tightening their belts financially and physically,” said Mr Holliday.

“On top of that, health campaigns will often use the umbrella of January to encourage people to abstain from drinking for the month so sadly the pubs have to work extra hard to tempt customers in. That’s why we wanted to help by creating the new brew.

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“We also thought it would be nice to bring together not just two breweries, but two beer styles to make the beer truly unique. By teaming up with Oli – one of a growing number of nano breweries – we will allow him exposure that he wouldn’t normally be able to get through his own volume limitations.”

The Norfolk Brewhouse is defined as a micro-brewery and brews in batches of 3,000 pints, whereas the nano-brewery typically brews in batches of 300 to 400.

The beer will be distributed to pubs across Norfolk and Suffolk in the third week of January and the two breweries say that they hope Belguique will be the start of a series of collaborations.

The Norfolk Brewhouse will be launching another beer in January called Tobi’s Tipple Nutchekka, which aims to raise awareness of testicular cancer.