Wednesday, 7 November 2012

12 Stouts of Christmas

12 Stouts of Christmas - Open Day

December 1st is the day that you all need to put into your diary to remind you to be at the brewery for the launch of this years 12 Stouts of Christmas. An opportunity not to be missed - bring your beer loving loved ones down for their experience of the year.
On the day we will have samples of as many beers we can put on, we will have gift boxes for pressies, we will have a stout stew, we will have mixed cases for pressies, we will have T shirts for pressies, we will have all the Christmas beer you need and best of all you will get the chance to meet us (ahem)... better still you will get the chance to meet 'Bear' the brewery dog - aahhhhh!
Marks Bread/ Cafe will be open & they will be selling delicious breads/cakes teas & coffees and supplying us with bread to accompany the stout stew.

The day starts at 11am and finish at 6pm, entrance either via Marks Bead/ Cafe of via Durnford St.
What more do you actually need!!!!
Hope to see you all there. 

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Creme Brulee

Having agreed to do our '12 Stouts of Christmas' again this year, we have been beavering away coming up with some new varieties that will be included in the release in December.
Chris has been in contact with the delightful Melissa Cole and between them they have come up with a something that is just divine.
Melissa came to the Beer Factory in some very fashionable red wellies and we had an absolutely great day brewing what is to become our 'Creme Brulee Stout'

Just to prove to you all that Melissa doesn't just swan around breweries talking alot, here's few pics showing her helping out - thanks Melissa pop in anytime - you actually emptied the mash tun quicker than Chris can do it!!!

Not only will the Stout taste like a Creme Brulee we somehow managed to get it to look like one - see below!

Stout at the end of Fermentation

A Creme Brulee
After fermentation we transferred the Stout to some rum casks where it is slowly ageing before we bottle it next month - mmmmmm.

A very big thank you to Melissa for coming down - another great day at the Bristol Beer Factory.


Thursday, 26 July 2012

Beer & Music

Apart from our love of beer, here at BBF we are all pretty passionate about music. The majority of us play instruments with over half of us either still playing in bands or having done so in the past.
So to give you an idea of what makes us tick, here's a brief insight

Name             Favourite Band(s)          First Single bought                         Best Gig
Simon            Lynyrd Skynyrd           You're the one that I want              JJ Cale
                      Stevie Ray Vaughn       John Travolta/Olivia NJ                Hammersmith Odeon
Mark             Beatles, Yes,                 See my Baby Jive                          Frank Zappa - NEC
                      Steely Dan                    Roy Wood
Sam              Pearl Jam                       Final Countdown, Europe             Pearl Jam - O2
                     Guns n Roses
Chris            The Pixies                     This Ole House                              The Cure
                     Julian Cope, Rush         Shakin' Stevens                            Glastonbury 1990
Robin           Sterophonics                  In the Middle of the Night            Stereophonics  
                     Travis                            BillyJoel                                       Millenium 2001
Dan            Cinematic Orchestra     Pulp, Comman People                  Sigur Ros
                   Flying Lotus                                                                        Edingburgh    
Jonny          Peter Green                   Gorillaz 19-2000                           Radiohead
                    John Martyn                                                                        Reading Festival
Steve         Super Furry Animals      Make Love like a man                Faith No More
                  Pantera                            Def Leppard                               Olympia Dublin

Not sure which is more embarrasing to admit to - buying Final Coutdown by Europe, Shakin Stevens or Olivia Newton-John......

We do have our dislikes too and a selection of people who you won't hear if you come the brewery are - Kylie Minogue, Bruce Springstein (last person who played some of his music was sacked on the spot), any Rap, Queen, any Stock Aitken & Waterman, Robbie Williams, Pete Doherty.......actually this is quite a long list so I'll just put a selection down!

BEER & don't need much more in you!

Friday, 20 July 2012

Southern Conspiracy

Our collaboration brew (Southern Conspiracy) with Mark from Dark Star has now been racked with a special 500ltrs put into white wine casks with the addition of whole gooseberries ready for bottling in a month or so.
The first tastings of the beer during racking were just amazing - i know we would say that 'cause we have to sell it, but this really is something else - if you ever wanted a refreshing summer beer this is it. The lime and grapefuit flavous derived from the NZ hops are just stunning. I could go on but best you taste it yourselves. A pint of Southern Conspiracy sat on top of the Grain Barge in Bristol Harbour, watching the sun go down (because it looks as though its going to make an appearance) - you could not want for more.

Here's proof that the Southern Conspiracy aged in white wine casks, sat on gooseberries is not just a dream (see photo). When we filled the casks, the combination of aromas from the oak/wine/goosberries and NZ hops was just a pleasure. It is times like these that you realise why you work in the craft beer industry!
We are hoping to get approx 80 cases (12 x 500ml) of this bottled - can't say when exactly as it'll be ready .....when its ready but hopefully within a couple of months.

There isn't a great deal of this beer to go round so keep a look out at all the usual stockists of our beer.

Monday, 9 July 2012

Caught on film- craft brewers fighting over spent grain

During a great fun and very successful day at the brewery last weekend a couple of well respected craft brewers were caught on film playing tug of war over a bin of spent grain.....if they had only asked we would have given them one each!!

Mark (Dark Star) & Justin (Moor Beer) very kindly came to the brewery to join us in a collaboration brew (name yet to be decided) last weekend and added a bit of muscle & knowledge. We are planning to put the majority of the brew into cask, with part being aged in wooden casks for bottling at a later date.
Here's a few more photos to give you an idea of how it may taste......
Chris adding hops

Justin adding 'Moor' hops

Mark adding............hops!

We'll be shouting about it when its ready to be released into the trade so keep yer noses in the air - there'll be a hoppy aroma coming your way soon!!
Thanks Mark & Justin - a great day.

Apollo II has landed

....squeezed another one in! Apollo II our second 25brl conical FV was delivered last week and put into position by some skilled use of a forklift, chain block and a few blocks of wood.

We are really really pleased with the results we have been getting from our first 25brl FV so will be getting this second one on stream as soon as possible.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

We've lost the pot....

...literally.... nearly 1000 of them! Some of you sharp eyed drinkers out there would have already noticed that a number of our Southville Hop bottles have something missing. I could try & convince you all that this was fully intended & a great marketing ploy but really it proves that we are human and that some how we managed to label nearly 1000 bottles with a huge glaring mistake - 'The Pint Pot is missing!'
To show how much our beloved Pint Pot means to us we have decided to open this into a bit of a competition.
The first 10 people to send in a photo of a Southville Hop bottle without the pint pot on the front will get entered into a draw to win a mixed case of bottles. Photos don't need to be high quality but we always enjoy a good larf so the funnier the better. You never know, if there is a real good piccy we may feel that we'll give that entry a prize as well!!!!
Send your photo's into with subject being 'Our Pint Pot is Missing'.
Put all your details on the email & we'll let you know. Cheers.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Blogging....(hope the spelling is right!)

Well hasn't it been an age since we last blogged, but just like Nat West we've had a few technical problems - however we are more honest than them and we admit that its because we're a bunch of technophobes and talking via a keyboard 'ain't our kinda thang'!!

So what has been happening in Beer Factoryland....... well, we have a few new faces at the brewery, a few new tanks, a few new beers and we are marching forward faster than most of us can keep with.

Once we have figured out what all this blogging is about we'll post something meaningful and constructive up for you all to comment on....... goes trying to upload an image.......

Ooops...try again

.......if you hadn't heard - Southville Hop became SIBA Overall Champion for bottled beer...pretty chuffed about that one!

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Today in the brewery...

Chris got wet...
Brewing Acer
Bottling yet more Southville Hop
Drinking Unfined Bitter Cali
Racking anything we can find
Packing pallets
Have a great Easter

Monday, 26 March 2012

Today in the Brewery

we are...

Brewing Seven
Racking Sunrise
Judging Homebrews
Cleaning FV's
Sending reminders out to all those people who haven't paid on time
Installing Handpulls at the Tobacco Factory
Showing scientists around the brewery
Hosting a Beer & Food matching event at No1 Harbourside (sold out, sorry)
& looking for an experienced brewer to join us

Handpulls in the Tobacco Factory

In December 2004 Bristol Beer Factory beers first went on sale in the Tobacco Factory, today they are on sale via handpull for the first time. They have always been cask beers, but rather than pouring through a t-bar they can now be dispensed by an authentic handpull.

There are 6 handpulls on the bar, today we have Seven, Sunrise, Acer, Milk Stout & Collaboration available.


Friday, 23 March 2012

Somerset Homebrewers

Our friends at the Ethicurean have organised this new Home-Brewing club, come along and see what it's all about...

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Today in the brewery...

Brewing Milk Stout
Bottling Milk Stout
Racking Milk Stout
Selling Milk Stout
Sending Milk Stout to San Diego
Drinking SunrAcer - it's very good
Private Tours tonight, tomorrow & Saturday
Tours for Boeing, Rolls-Royce & Stag Parties aplenty (Hen parties more welcome) next month
Listening to Stiff Little Fingers
& working on the rules of Brewery Cricket (need a better bat than a broom though!)

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Today in the Brewery

We are...

Labelling Hefe (on the new labeller --->)
Brewing Gold twice today
Delivering lots of casks locally
Delivering lots of bottles to Waitrose
Swapping beers with 4 other breweries
Cleaning lots and lots of casks
Racking a double brew of Bitter Californian
Tasting our newest blend SunrAcer from the sample room
Listening to Radio Bob
Celebrating the "Beer Sommelier"
Wondering why Chris has such a spring in his step
& looking forward to the start of the Cricket season so that Somerset can crush Lancashire

Monday, 12 March 2012

BBF wins National Beer Festival Gold

The Bristol Beer Factory struck gold, twice at a national beer competition this week organised by the Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA). Our “Southville Hop” won gold in its category and then went on to become Overall Champion Bottled Beer in the country. This follows on from success at the regional competition10 months ago.

SIBA chief executive Julian Grocock, said, “Those of us who have been involved in this round of SIBA beer competitions have once again been overwhelmed by the quality of the beers entered at every stage from regional heat to national finals.

“With standards rising every year, it becomes ever more challenging to select the best beers from a very strong field. Winning an award at a regional competition is an achievement to be proud of and to take one at the national competition an even greater one.”

He added, “Such is the growing reputation of SIBA’s beer competitions that winning an award today offers the successful brewers the promise of much-increased awareness among beer enthusiasts, and new listings in the growing number of beer-oriented pubs, bars and off-trade outlets.”

Bristol Beer Factory MD Simon Bartlett said, “This is a reward for our hard w

ork over the last eight years and further vindication of our decision to brew beers like Southville Hop, which is an American IPA style, heavily hopped but balanced with a good malt background. Winning this prestigious award raises the awareness of drinkers to both the Bristol Beer Factory and craft beer itself.”

Southville Hop is a bottle-conditioned beer brewed with flavourful hops from the north-west of America, tropical fruit flavours burst forth from the glass, and a distinctive resinous bitterness leaves you wanting more. BBF’s own Californian brewer Brett Ellis said “It takes influence from the craft beers brewed on America’s west coast that have taken the beer drinking world by storm.”

Head brewer Chris Kay added “Southville Hop is one of our expanding portfolio of bottled beers in many different styles. We can’t wait to start using our new bottling equipment, that is due to arrive any day now to help us keep up with the incredible increasing demand for our bottled beers.”

This completes a fabulous few months for the BBF, who have become the BBC Radio 4 Food and Farming Awards “Best Drinks Producer” and have just become a regional stockist with Waitrose.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Today in the Brewery

we are

Brewing 2 brews of Seven
Delivering locally
Listening to Prodigy
Attending the SIBA Conference
Fixing coolers at the Tobacco Factory
Designing a new pump clip
& preparing to install handpulls in the Tobacco Factory

Tomorrow we are brewing Milk Stout & Bristol Hefe
Yesterday we bottled Southville Hop & brewed Sunrise

Monday, 27 February 2012

Today in the brewery we are...

Brewing Sunrise
Bottling Southville Hop
Transferring Acer
Painting the new floor
Waiting for our new labeller
Checking to see if the bottles of Milk Stout are ready
& listening to JackFM

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Beer & Food Event

Our next Beer & Food matching evening is at the Star & Dove in Totterdown who are putting on an evening of PIES. Not just your traditional pastry topped Beef & Ale Pie but a 6 course Pie extravaganza cleverly turning the humble pie into a gastronomic delight.

We are looking forward to adding our own twist to the evening with some really exciting beer pairings to get your mouths watering and to really show off the flavours in the pies and the beers.

At only £22.50, it seems like an absolute bargain to me!

Contact the Star & Dove for more information 01179 332 892.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Collaboration Brew Day

The Bristol Collaboration for 2012, as expected, began over a beer, in Beerd. 6 (Arbor Ales, Bath Ales, BBF, Great Western Brewing, RCH & Zero Degrees) breweries joining forces to produce something special for the Bristol Beer Festival and to promote Beer in Bristol. A style of beer, brew date & location were decided upon...

So yesterday we all met at 8 o'clock at RCH Brewery ready to get down and dirty with a Porter recipe that combined the very traditional with a few modern twists...Just over 1100kg of malt went in, including Carafa and Smoked Malt.
The wort tasted beautiful, with a lovely hint of smokiness.
We added a lot of hops, and then added some more...
and then started on the big clean up.
Thanks to Paul and Graham at RCH for looking after us all.

Monday, 6 February 2012

The Bristol Collaboration 2012

In the spirit of collaboration we are meeting up with 5 other local breweries tomorrow to brew a very special beer to celebrate all that is good about beer in Bristol. For the first time since 1889 when Bristol United Breweries was formed, the major breweries in Bristol are once again uniting to brew beer for Bristolians. Arbor Ales, Bath Ales, Bristol Beer Factory, Great Western Brewing, RCH and Zero Degrees are combining their skills, knowledge and passion for great beer to produce a brew that gives a modern twist to a style of beer that has been famously brewed and exported from Bristol for centuries.

The Collaboration 2012 is to be released in mid-March in time for the Bristol Beer Festival at a time when beer has its highest profile in the city. The Bristol Beer Festival is bigger than ever this year, with an extra session to accommodate all the people who want to drink great beers. The group of local breweries would like to take the opportunity to unite and promote the thriving beer scene in the city. The best way to do that is to combine talents to produce a stunning beer that can be enjoyed at the festival and around the city afterwards.

The Bristol Craft Breweries have joined forces to brew a Porter, a traditional dark beer made famous during the 18th century; there are records of the Porter Brewery in Bristol dating back to 1730. Arbor Ales Jon Comer said “we decided to brew a traditional, historical style that was important in the history of brewing in Bristol”. Roger Jones from Bath Ales commented that “the brewing industry is truly unique. I can’t imagine any other industry where 6 competitor businesses from the same city would get together over a beer and decide to collaborate their efforts.”

BBF Managing Director Simon Bartlett said “The CAMRA Bristol Beer Festival is the most important event in Bristol for breweries and we wanted to unite to brew a beer that celebrated the fabulous talents of local brewers.”

The six breweries will be launching “Collaboration 2012” at the Bristol Beer Festival on Thursday 15th March. The beer will be sold in pubs owned by the all of the breweries involved as well as other freehouses in the city. The Collaboration 2012 will be available in bottles, casks and kegs, to be enjoyed from all forms of dispense.

Friday, 27 January 2012

A new beer - The Bitter Californian

We are brewing a new beer today called The Bitter Californian, a hybrid between a traditional English Best Bitter and the wonderfully aromatic Californian Pale Ales. Our brewers, Chris (the bitter one?) and Brett (the Californian one) have combined their love of English malts and American hops to create a delicious new beer.Chris has devised the malt recipe from some of the finest English malts that have provided the base to the classic best bitter for years. Brett has used his love for new and interesting hop varieties to pick 3 hops that will give delicious flavours and aromas.

The hops are Newport (Kaffir lime leaves & citrus rind aromas), Chinnook (lime zest and lemon balm) and Nugget (sherbet lemons), these will both bitter the beer and provide flavour and aroma. We will also be dry-hopping this beer to give extra hop character.

Brett says "It will definitely taste better than the Lemsip I've been drinking."
Simon claims "it's our first Collaboration of the year." I'm not sure it counts when its between our brewers!
Chris says "Ow" because his backs hurting.

The Bitter Californian will be a limited one-off release (unless its amazing, and you all demand more, then it will be added to the ever-growing list of beers...) so get it when you can!

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Today in the Brewery

Today in the brewery...

We have been brewing Southville Hop,
Racking Independence,
Labelling Exhibition,
Planning the 12 Stouts for next Christmas,
Thinking about this years Bristol Craft Brewer's Collaboration,
& seeing if the new batch of Ultimate Stout is ready...

12 more Stouts

We have decided that the 12 Stouts project was so much fun that we would like to do it again next year...

The shortlist of recipes looks a bit like a long list so we will have to start some trials right away to narrow it down. There are some exciting concepts and flavours we're going to experiment with, and its really got the tastebuds going in the office this morning.

There are 4 staying on the list and 8 new ones. With inspiration taken from all over the world, from history and the present day, from confection to curry, there promises to be a stout for everyone...

Friday, 20 January 2012

Beer & Food Matching at Montpelier Basement

I am heading to the brilliant Montpelier Basement for Dan & Elly's supper club on Saturday and have been thinking about some beer matches for the menu. Follow @MontpelierBsmt

It's a tricky menu for beer matches, but let me know what you think of my pairings and any other ideas for beers.

With the honey & mustard popcorn I am going with Bristol Hefe, the light, spritzy beer is a good start to a meal and will be refreshing against the popcorn.

I think Exhibition will pair well with the soup, the dark, rich beer will come through against the sweet onions and the dark fruit flavours will hopefully compliment the red wine flavours.

We made a beer with Windmill Hill City Farm, where we aged some beer in a red wine cask with Redcurrants and Worcester berries, I think the fruity, tart aspect to the beer will work well with the pork dish, cutting through the rich meat.

I think the dessert really needs a sweet Vintage Ale, such as Fullers with its marmalade flavours or a Barley Wine. I will have to raid my beer cupboard at home for a suitable Barley Wine I think.

A Glenlivet Cask Aged Stout will finish the dinner for me and wash down the rarebit.

Can't wait!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Online Sales

After struggling a little with our online sales over Christmas we are reviewing how we do things in the future as the volumes overwhelmed us a bit and the couriers broke everything.

We have taken the shop down whilst we sort out the best way to make beers available online but that is both profitable (broken cases aren't profitable), we can offer the kind of service levels we want to and doesn't drive two people to breakdowns. We are working through various options of third parties, different packaging and new couriers etc, and will endeavour to get the shop going again asap.

Meanwhile we are still selling beer direct from the brewery and they are online at Beers of Europe and Best of British Beer.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Bristol Independents

The Bristol Independents website has been set up to highlight great Independent businesses in the city.

We have been nominated as one of Bristol's favourite food businesses, if you would like to vote for us, you can vote here

Monday, 9 January 2012

This week at the BBF

Brewing a bunch of hop forward beers - Southville Hop, Acer and Independence along with the less hop driven Seven.

Southville hop – Showcases the danker side of hops.
Acer – Lets you know of the complexity of hops.
Independence – Is always letting the citrus bang hit you
across the face.

Bottling - Ultimate Stout which is forecasted to be ready
early Feb. BBF Fact: Because the Ultimate Stout is such a strong all malt beer
we have to use twice as much malt.

Smelling and tasting some new hops to the BBF.
Hop varieties - Nugget, Apollo, Newport and Chinook

The brewers are now challenging each other to see who can
clean out and reassemble our mash tun the fastest. Currently head brewer Chris
Kay has set the time to beat at 29 min 11 sec for an Acer mash.

There is a lot of talk about doing another Bristol Brewers
Collaboration. Last year we brewed a Belgian inspired IPA at 6.8%. The grist
had pale crystal malts loads of low colour Maris Otter and hand toasted malted
oats. The hop bill was everything from Amarillo to Northern Brewer to Motueka…What
are we going to do this year?