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Brewers Blog 3 - Christmas is coming!

In the ebb and flow of production and demand, November is always a quiet month – even in a normal year! It may be a nadir for pubs and drinkers but for us in the brewhouse it is the time set aside for brewing the beer we sell direct to the public at Christmas. We continue as if nothing at all is happening in the World out there!

As I write this, the Old Spot Prize Strong Ale is nearly at the end of its primary fermentation and barreling up is imminent. The Christmas beers are put into brewer’s barrels. At 36 gallons and a quarter of a ton a pop, these babies take a little handling.

There was a time when serious ‘wet’ pubs used to take beer in Barrels (or 36’s as we tend to call them) and it was a rite of passage to rack one on the stillage on your own – and just in case you want to know, it’s all about technique rather than sheer brute force….oh, and a little luck for good measure (or at least that was the case when I did it).

For many years at the brewery we only did 40 pint polypins for the Christmas take home trade but now we’ve broadened the options by introducing 5 litre cans and 10 litre boxes.