New real ale spirit released

New real ale spirit released

A brewery in Staffordshire has turned its ale into a unique new spirit to avoid wastage due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Real ale, an iconic British pub drink, is made using traditional ingredients, cask-conditioned and served with little carbon dioxide. Usually, a two-month shelf life provides ample time for ale to travel from brewery to pub and be sold for customers to enjoy.

However, at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, pubs were closed and supplies of real ale had nowhere to go. This caused serious problems for small breweries who were faced with the challenge of finding somewhere to sell thousands of pints of produce before it became undrinkable.

Unlike bigger businesses, many small companies were not set up to sell online. Despite selling to locals from their doors, many breweries still had plenty of stock to shift. Desperate not to waste their award-winning ale, Staffordshire-based Lymestone Brewery approached a local distiller with the idea of turning their ale into an interesting new spirit.

The team at Beer Barrel Distillery Co. were keen to get started, and within six weeks, Stone the Crows Beer Spirit was ready to taste. During lockdown, Lymestone Brewery had been busy setting up an online shop, with the first batch of the new spirit selling out before it was even finished.

The spirit, similar to those produced historically in Europe, is already popular with locals. It can be drunk neat, like whisky, or as a ‘boilermaker’, in a pint of the beer it was made from. Depending on how you would choose to enjoy it, this intriguing new spirit could be coupled with engraved whisky glasses or engraved pint glasses to create a special gift for any real ale lover.

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