Thursday, May 05, 2011

One To Watch: RedWillow Brewery

OK; full disclosure time. I met Toby McKenzie (Head Honcho at RedWillow) last year, when the brewery was in its infancy, and subsequently ended up helping him out with various tasting notes for his (then large and very much experimental) batch of beers. It's the first time I'd done anything like that and was a fun project to do.

Even more fun, however, was seeing the brewery take shape and grow, see those first beers get refined and then finally brewed up and sent out. Seeing as though RedWillow's beers are now trickling over the Pennines into Yorkshire and beyond, I felt that now was the time to drum up some more support. Ageless Double IPA (7.2abv) is now gracing the bar at Mr Foley's, and I understand The Grove have some, too. I needn't have worried about the end product not being as good as those test brews; it's even better. Thick, lasting head, a lovely burnished-golden colour and a thick mouthfeel that gives way to a blast of Citrus that lies somewhere between Mango and Pineapple; and the finish is long and thirst-quenching. Way more drinkable than the 7.2%abv would suggest, it's a wonderful beer and I strongly suggest you go try it now. Because ultimately, the more people we get to drink it, the better it sells, and the better it sells, the more we will get. Simple.

The blog is called The Good Stuff. No matter in what capacity I've helped out, this is not a case of nepotism and that's why I came clean at the start - Ageless DIPA is a wonderful beer, and knowing the kinds of people who read this blog, I'm sure you'll agree. It would be a crime for me to shy away from ever featuring Toby's work here; especially given the hard work Toby and his family have put in, all in the name of great beer.

If you've not done so already, check out RedWillow's blog. It's one of those rare beasts; updated regularly, honest, and interesting.

11 comments:

John Clarke said...

On Mark Dredge's blog in January (I think) I flagged up RedWillow as one to watch for 2011 and so it has proved to be. I've been singing their praises all over the place for some months now and Toby doesn't seem to have put a foot wrong. We have four of their beers (including Ageless and the excellent Smokeless) at Stockport Beer Festival next month. Might even be five if he brews the black IPA he mentioned the other week.

John Clarke said...

Meant to add - I suspect that once the beer blogoshpere has got Buxton out of its system, RedWillow will be the next "on trend" brewery - especially once bottles start to become available.

Leigh said...

Morning John; good to hear from you. I agree re the bottles; given the sometimes 'armchair' leanings of the blogosphere, RW may indeed make that impact with Thier bottles. I was really happy after 6 months To finally taste cask RW. as you know Toby's worked so hard-and I really hope it pays off; in fact, I safely predict a beerfestival award before the end of the year, without a doubt.

BeerReviewsAndy said...

I've heard a lot about these, can't wait to try them, i've been keeping an eye out but not seen them on cask as of yet...

Mark said...

Noted! Although it'll probably take a while for it to come this far south.

In the interest of balance :P ... I don't get IIPAs from cask! I just don't think they work. At 7.2% this one sounds like it's at the lower end though and I trust the opinion of Mr GoodStuff. This will fill my glass the next time I see it. :)

BeerBirraBier.

Leigh said...

Thanks Mark; out of interest then- what's your preferred dispense? Bottle or keg?

Chunk said...

For DIPAs I think either are fine. If you ask me, the extra carbonation and chill stop the beer becoming to sticky and cloyingly sweet. In a cask you just can't get that.

Leigh said...

As it happens I agree, Mark. I'm pro-keg for sure; especially when it comes to stronger, more heavily - hopped beers!

John Clarke said...

Mark

There is no reason at all why IIPAs shouldn't work from cask - the few I have had certainly have. I guess you are of the "needs a bit of gass to bring out the hops" persuasion. I can sort of see where you're coming from there but I would have thought some judicious hard pegging would sort that one out.

Off to Macclesfield Beer Festival later today so hope to catch up with Toby there (also hoping they still have the new IPA from Happy Valley left - another potentially great brewery that's currently way below the bloggers' horizon).

Leigh said...

John - let us know how you get on with Happy Valley - any good?

John Clarke said...

To my surprise I found myself not really enjoying the IPA (the rest of the Happy Valley beers have been great). I was expecting something Jaipur-ish but this was a bit heavy and unsubtle. I think it might have been a bit green so I will certainly give it another go if I see it again.