Fancy a beer? Here is Cheshire Brewhouse’s Gibraltar Porter, a brooding shade of darkness in the glass with suggestions of toffee, dark fruits and mocha coffee on the nose and the palate, joined with a soft and silky mouth feel and a Sahara-like dry finish. Another? How about Govinda, a magnificent and heady IPA that resonates with the citrusy character of English hops and the depth and body of heritage malts? These are the kind of beers that have a direct link to what beer-lovers in the 19th and early 20th century enjoyed, a communique with the past as well as a direct celebration of the present and the UK’s thriving and exciting beer scene of which Cheshire Brewhouse is a vital part.
‘I use Chevallier malt for Govinda,’ says Shane Swindells, founder of Cheshire Brewhouse, ‘it was a barley strain common with brewers in the late 19th century and early 20th. It gives a very full-bodied and malt-accented beer. I love historic beers, they open a door for me into which our forefathers drunk.’
Swindells began Cheshire Brewhouse in 2012, but has been passionate about beer and the joyful sociability of pubs from an early age — ‘beer was special, it was the stitches that held the fabric of society together’. Home is the historic town of Congleton, where it is based on a small industrial estate in the Dane Valley, close to the greenness of Congleton Park. Using bespoke-made brewing kit that makes 2880 pints per brew, Swindells produces an award-winning and vegan-friendly range of beers that can be enjoyed in cask, keg, bottle and can. As well as its historic recipes, Cheshire Brewhouse produces a superb range of modern craft beers that resonate with the bright colours and tropical fruit aromas of American hops such as Citra and Amarillo as well as English varieties such as East Kent Goldings.
There is a beer for everyone and if you are in Congleton do drop into the tap-room at the brewery, which is a natural sun-trap and a tranquil place to enjoy the beers of Cheshire Brewhouse while the River Dane continues on its implacable way and buzzards wheel and rise above the verdant space of Congleton Park.
3-star Great Taste Award
2-star Great Taste Award
1-star Great Taste Award
1-star Great Taste Award
Champion Beer - RMI Analytics Heirloom Malt Awards
Engine Vein, 4.2%
Copper-coloured best bitter that is crisp and bittersweet on the palate and finishes with a fruity, citrusy flourish.
Cheshire Gap, 3.8%
Fruity, bittersweet and refreshing pale ale that uses the English hop varieties East Kent Goldings and Bodecia.
Lindow: The Black Lake Cheshire Stout, 4.5%
Mocha coffee and butter toffee on the nose lead to a creamy, lightly roasty and bittersweet stout that finishes dry.
DBA Burton Style Pale Ale, 4.6%
Copper-coloured pale ale that pays homage to the well-flavoured beers produced in the town of Burton-upon-Trent.
Govinda — Chevallier Edition, 6.8%
Muscular IPA with a juicy fruitiness, peppery hops and a dry graininess in the finish.
Gibraltar Porter, 8.1%
Robust porter based on an 1889 recipe from an Isle of Wight brewery that eventually closed in the 1960s