A trophy cabinet probably wouldn’t be the first thing you’d think of when designing a brewery, but for Lacons that’s been an essential part of their planning. Their visitor centre has a selection of the 52 cups, certificates and medals on display representing the demand for their beers.
Established as a brewery in 1760, the business was bought, then subsequently closed in the mid-60s, but brewing returned to the east Norfolk coast again just over 5 years ago. Working closely with the Lacon family, the new owners revised the iconic falcon logo and even started using the yeast from the original beer that had been held in deep freeze.
The current Lacons team are just as fastidious about producing a quality pint as their predecessors were 250 years ago. The brewing methods and equipment may be state of the art now, but tradition still plays a part in what they do. The beer range currently stands at 27 different varieties, offering a fantastic choice of styles for both the traditional drinker and the craft beer enthusiast alike. The malted barley is bought from a local specialist supplier and hops are sourced from around the world.
Encore, the flagship beer has been crowned “World’s Best Bitter under 4.5%” on two separate occasions at the World Beer Awards, as well as receiving Overall Cask Champion at the International Brewing Awards (the Oscars of Beer!) and category Bronze at the World Beer Cup.
One of the nicest parts of my job is choosing the beers that feature in our subscription schemes and while you may think it’s a dirty job, someone has to do it. My mantra is always to source unusual brews from unusual breweries from all over Britain. I’ve picked out just a few of the dozen beers we will be stocking.
Our Monthly Beer Club customers in February can look forward to sampling beers from the most southerly of our brewery partners. I’m delighted to welcome Yates’ Brewery from The Isle of Wight and Head Brewer Dave Yates. Dave has a long history of brewing on the island having worked with Ushers, Dodner and Sandown breweries. I especially like their Undercliff Experience, a 4.1% amber ale with a slight citrus hint which will feature in this months’ case.
I got in touch with Sadler’s Brewery in the Black Country by complete accident. I was chatting to one of the staff at a call centre in Birmingham about my bank account when she mentioned that her boyfriend was Head Brewer for a microbrewery in Stourbridge. I called them up and am now delighted February will feature their Worcester Sorcerer, a classic full bodied English bitter.
We’ve been proud suppliers of a number of Welsh beers and I’ve been really keen to work with another brewery in the Prinicipality. Sue Hayward is Head Brewer or Brewster to give the correct term for a female producer of beer at The Waen Brewery in the pretty market town of Llanidloes. They have won many SIBA awards, been featured on BBC TV and have a page of their own in Melissa Cole’s book ‘Let Me Tell You About Beer’. I’ve chosen their Janner’s Pride for February. I’m looking forward to hearing what you think about these beers and welcome any suggestions for future months.