Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Growler Beers UK:

A few months ago, a new shop front appeared on Morningside Road, not far from my flat.  From the signage, I assumed that there would be a new pub in the area soon, but the idea behind Growler Beers UK is actually much better and much more unique than your bog standard bar.

Source: here

Growler Beers sells craft ales, lagers and ciders, bottled on site, and intended to be enjoyed at home.  The shop is set up like a bar (without any seating) and you can choose from over ten varieties on tap.  Some of these options are seasonal, but this gives you chance to try something new every time you visit!

To briefly explain the unusual name, historically a 'growler' is a container used to take beer home from craft breweries.  Owner and mastermind, Stuart Dinning, decided to modify this idea (as some American, Canadian and Australian businesses have done already) and give customers the ability to enjoy freshly poured pints from the comfort of their own sofa.

When I visited for the first time this week, Stuart was there to give me advice and fully explain the Growler process to me.  You can either purchase your very own glass growler to keep forever for £8.50, or you can pay a deposit of either £5 or £10 (depending on size) to borrow a bottle.  Stuart then talked me through all of the ciders and beers available, and gave me the option to taste a small sample of anything that tempted me before I made a decision.  Although Growler Beers only has an off licence and can't legally sell alcohol to be consumed on the premises, they are allowed to give free tasters, which is both generous and a really good idea!

Source: here

It might be playing it safe, but I'm not much of a beer drinker, so I decided to opt for a one litre bottle of Jaggy Thistle cider, brewed by Thistly Cross.  Stuart described it as apple juice with a kick, and it certainly lives up to that claim!  I would eventually like to buy my own growler to keep, but with the promise of special edition Christmas bottles going on sale in the near future, I've decided to wait.

I love the concept behind Growler Beers, and would highly recommend visiting if you're passing by.  The experience was so much more fun than standing in front of a measly supermarket selection and choosing a pre poured bottle of the same old cider that I always plump for.  Plus, it's good to support local and independent businesses - it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!  That might have something to do with the Jaggy Thistle, though...