Ian Cobham, Managing Director and Head Brewer at Dartmoor Brewery, gives us an insight into how England’s highest brewery has kept on brewing during the pandemic, and how it’s preparing to support the pubs when they can safely reopen.
It would be an exercise in stating the obvious to say that the last few months have been challenging for Dartmoor Brewery, as they have for everyone, but there, I’ve said it! In the blink of an eye, our loyal trade customers found themselves in business lockdown at the end of March, and orders for our cask beers stopped dead, of course.
In addition to our trade customers, we are so fortunate to have such a loyal following by lovers of fine traditional ales – both here in our Devon heartland and, increasingly, up and down the length of the country. We knew that we needed to keep our loyal followers well-stocked with their favourite beers, and quickly revamped our online shop, ramped up our bottled beer production – and introduced free nationwide delivery on any order of two or more packs of beer.
As well as keeping the beer flowing responsibly in homes throughout the land, with often 60 or more orders being dispatched daily, our temporary “new normal” has also meant that we’ve been able to keep our brewing equipment “warm” throughout, and perhaps more importantly, it’s kept our precious yeast – a special strain originally developed for our famous Jail Ale – alive and active.
These are, of course, the hardest of times for Britain’s fabulous pubs, restaurants and hotels, but it’s been inspiring to see how so many pubs have been using this time to spruce up their bars, plant up their beer gardens, and prepare their plans for a safe and socially-distanced reopening. We’re here and ready to supply our brilliant beers to Britain’s brilliant pubs once again, and that’s partly thanks to all our loyal followers who have been enjoying our beers at home during this time – which in turn has allowed us to keep on brewing through it all.
If you love Britain’s pubs, get ready to give them your support when they open again. Good beer and good cheer are the lifeblood of any pub. We’ll supply the beer, if you bring the cheer! It’s never been a more important time to support your local.
Stay safe everyone, thank you for all your amazing support, and we look forward to raising a glass or two to say a proper “cheers”, very soon.
Allow us to introduce the team at Dartmoor Brewery. We are passionate about brewing great beer.