Mør Beer, Vicar?
Mør, Kirrie Ales, Park Brew and more, the future looks bright for craft brewing in Angus
At the turn of the century Angus hadn't seen an operational brewery for 50 years. These days, as part of a wave of craft brewing across the UK, the region has half a dozen engaged, enthusiastic brewers who are quickly establishing a local following.
Based just beyond the outskirts of Dundee at Kellas, MòR Brewing currently brews six ales – three a week – with some fantastic names and interesting flavours. Tea, Vicar is a malty, fruity pale amber bitter whilst Bidly Dark! is a dark, chocolate, malty mild with a vanilla aftertaste.
Kirrie Ales from Kirriemuir is firmly at the micro end of the micro-brewing scene, brewing from premises measuring just 8ft by 9ft. Lines include Red from the Shed, Fruity Wee Blonde and Thrums Best.
Park Brew, based in Brechin, produces a range of beers inspired by some local history. Their flagship Townhead IPA is named in honour of three local brothers from Brechin who founded the North Port Distillery, while St Ninians, a crisp lager based on a Mexican cerveza recipe, takes its name from a square in the town dedicated to the Christian saint.
Set up by Czech brewer Stephan Rychtar, Lion's Lair brewery in Carmyllie by Arbroath opened at the end of 2015. Rychtar aims to use only local ingredients in brews including Sonny Blonde, a smooth golden blonde ale lovingly named after his son, and Black Mamba, a cask-hopped dark IPA.
The most recent arrivals on the scene are Shed 35, started (in, yes, a garden shed) by three former oil workers brewing Tomahawk IPA and Red Beard Irish ale, and Arbroath's Redcastle Brewery, producing Tower IPA, ruby beer Red Lady and the more exotic Gun Powder – a coconut, mango and chilli flavoured ale.