When Craig and Douglas Buchanan and Allan Young started Strathaven at the historic Craigmill Brewery in late 2005, they put a lot of work into renovating the riverside plant and making it visitor friendly. Previously used by the Williams Bros, Historic Scotland helped them turn it into a modern 36-barrel-capacity brewery, with unusual original features like an 18th century 500-gallon stone-clad brewing kettle. The beer list includes five regulars and nine specials, available in everything from 500ml bottles to 80 litre kilderkins. There’s a visitor centre, shop and tap / function room, with selected beers for sampling.
Just out of Strathaven proper lies this quaint and highly regarded little brewery. Previously used by Williams Bros, Historic Scotland helped Craig and Douglas Buchanan and Allan Young turn it into a modern 36-barrel-capacity brewery, but kept the 18th-century, 500-gallon stone-clad brewing kettle and some lovely old architectural features. Crucially, they also made it visitor friendly, and although the operation is small (and the shop small too), you’re guaranteed a friendly welcome. They currently produce six regular ales and about a dozen specials (principally in 500ml bottles and casks), and Strathaven Ale tap badges are a regular fixture on the hand pumps of CAMRA pubs all over Scotland – and almost always in the couple of bars just up the road in Strathaven itself.
- Open since: 2005