Farmhouse beers from Donegal

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Indie Beer Week : We had a blast!

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We had a blast during Indie Beer Week Ireland.

Thanks to everybody who joined us for our Big Day Out at the Brewery and on our Seafarer’s Tour of Kinnegarland.

We’re all part of a seismic shift in the balance of the beer world. No longer the exclusive remit of big, anonymous corporations, brewing is now a craft that exists at local level and enriches small communities.

We’re thrilled to have raised €1600 for Pieta House to help support suicide awareness and prevention.

Lovely to welcome our Inishowen neighbours, Boghopper Brewery from Muff, who joined us for the day and also served their beer in aid of this excellent charity. Generous contributions also came from Irish Premium Oysters who donated the freshest of fresh Donegal oysters to accompany the local beer and our homemade soft drinks.

Fed on the sublime grilled cheese sandwiches from Scarpello & Co and entertained by DJ artists Turn It On, the afternoon at K2 had a leisurely and relaxed ambience. A phenomenal preview performance from one of this year’s Earagail Arts Festival highlights, Basork, brought the curtain down on the day.

Thanks to the Local Enterprise Office who supported the nationwide initiative not only financially but also with great spirit and enthusiasm. Not the least of their contribution was John Soffe, the photographer who documented the Big Day Out so well.

Our Seafarer’s Tour had to make do with an amateur-driven dying smart phone but the Great Arch graciously makes any photographer look respectable. We were blessed with decent weather and great company from the eclectic mix of voyagers and our trusty captain and mate, Niall and Angela. What a beautiful place Kinnegarland is.

We’re already looking forward to Indie Beer Week Ireland 2018.

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Big Day Out at the Brewery : Nuts and Bolts

K2 Map BIndie Beer Week kicks off tomorrow across the country and the countdown continues to our Big Day Out at the Brewery. Here are some nuts and bolts:

You’ll find K2 in the Ballyraine Industrial Estate. It looks quite different to the idyllic setting of K1 that you see on our Facebook masthead at the moment. That just makes the surprise all the better when you go inside!

There’s parking at the brewery. Please park considerately to allow everyone to squeeze in.

The event kicks off at 2pm and runs until a punctual finish at 8pm. It’s a drop-in event — you don’t need to be there from start to finish so fit it into your day as suits you best.

Brewery tours will run every half hour or so and you can put your name on the list for the tour of your choice when you arrive. Children will be treated to Rick’s special Kid’s Brewery Tour — not to be missed. We’ll probably run this twice during the afternoon.

As well as beer, we’ll be serving homemade soft drinks including some highly experimental shrubs.

Food will be available thoughout the afternoon — Scarpello & Co’s grilled cheese sandwiches as well as fresh oysters.

We’ll be unveiling our brand new Kinnegarland poster and our traditional metal beer signs in our Kinnegar corner shop. We’ll also have the usual T-shirts, hoodies, glasses and gift packs.

Tours and demos will finish up by 5.30pm, in time for Basork’s live performance shortly after 6pm.

All beer will be served in return for a donation to Pieta House.

And remember, the event is booked out so please don’t travel, if you’re not already on the list.


Indie Beer Week : Music menu takes shape for Big Day Out at the Brewery

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***This event is now booked out***

Just as the drinks menu nears completion for our Big Day Out at the Brewery next Saturday, the musical menu has now taken proper shape.

Turn It On play music everywhere it’s needed — including K2! They’ll entertain us from around 3–5pm. A community of music lovers, Turn It On run vinyl nights and DJ events, festivals and parties.

Shortly after 6pm we’ll be treated to a special preview performance from one of the artists performing at this year’s Earagail Arts Festival. The 10-piece Basork fusion group will fill K2 with Balkan-Irish sounds in what promises to be a lively curtain-closer to the big day.

Indie Beer Week Ireland kicks off on Friday next, 23 June and runs until Sunday 2 July. Throughout the country, 27 independent Irish breweries will invite their local communities to visit them for special events to discover where and how real beer is made.

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Follow the Hops across the Irish Sea: Celebrate St Patrick with Kinnegar

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Working in a small Irish brewery, you’d be forgiven for thinking that St Patrick’s Day is a national holiday across the water. Our great Irish diaspora has ensured that StP will be celebrated in the best of watering holes the length and breadth of Britain. And in line with the times, the shamrock will be drowned with quality beers from independently-owned Irish breweries in modern, trend-setting bars and off-licences that bear little if any resemblance to the Guinness-sodden Oirish pubs of the old days.

As a Donegal brewery, we’re particularly proud to see Kinnegar being poured in Scotland. For far too long we’ve been exporting our people to that bit of land across the water — it makes a refreshing change to be exporting our beer instead. You’ll find us in BrewDog bars in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee and Stirling, as well as part of the Ireland Craft Beers showcase at Six Degrees North in Edinburgh.

On top of our well-heralded guest appearance across the full range of BrewDog bars, Kinnegar will be pouring alongside other fine Irish breweries at several more venues in London, Huddersfield and Crewe.

Here’s exactly where you can find a pint to celebrate our national holiday:

Tate Modern, St Patricks Day Festival, London
The Rake, Borough Market, London
The King & Co, Clapham Park Road, London
Beer Asylum, London
Earl of Essex, London
Mason & Co, London
Bank of Friendship, London
The Sportsman, Huddersfield
Beer Dock, Crewe
Chapter Festival, Wales
Six Degrees North, Edinburgh

BrewDog Bars*:
Aberdeen BrewDog  Yannaroddy
Castlegate BrewDog  Otway / Crossroads
Merchant City DogHouse  Scraggy Bay / Black Bucket
Glasgow BrewDog  Otway / Crossroads
Leeds BrewDog  Black Bucket
ShuffleDog Leeds  Black Bucket
York BrewDog  Yannaroddy
Camden BrewDog  Crossroads / White Rabbit
Clerkenwell BrewDog  Scraggy Bay / Rustbucket
Shoreditch BrewDog  Flying Saucer
Homerton BrewDog  Yannaroddy
Shepherds Bush BrewDog  Yannaroddy / Black Bucket
Soho BrewDog  Crossroads / Flying Saucer
Clapham BrewDog  Black Bucket / Flying Saucer
Birmingham BrewDog  Yannaroddy
Brighton BrewDog  Rustbucket / Flying Saucer
Bristol BrewDog  Rustbucket
Cardiff BrewDog  Crossroads / Bucket & Spade
Dundee Brewdog  Scraggy Bay / Bucket & Spade
Edinburgh BrewDog  Crossroads
Leicester Brewdog  Scraggy Bay
Liverpool BrewDog  Rustbucket
Manchester BrewDog  Flying Saucer
Newcastle BrewDog  White Rabbit / Bucket & Spade
Norwich BrewDog  Rustbucket / Flying Saucer
Nottingham BrewDog  Black Bucket
Sheffield Brewdog  Rustbucket
Southampton BrewDog  Bucket & Spade / Flying Saucer
Stirling Brewdog  Crossroads

*Check individual BrewDog bar websites to confirm beers being poured!

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Finishing the unpacking and finding the medals

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Time at last to finish the unpacking after the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fair and Dublin Craft Beer Cup. Here’s the third party evidence that we’re making some nice beers here on the periphery of Europe!

GOLD  Yannaroddy, Big Bunny
SILVER  Otway
BRONZE  Rustbucket, Black Bucket

Very well done to everybody here at Kinnegar: Rick, Libby, Rachel, David, Kevin, Tom, Louise, Daniel, Thomas, Margaret and Eoin. Brilliant team effort.

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How big is K2?

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Brewers talk of “brew length” and the most frequently named unit of measurement is a hectolitre (that’s 100L, for those of us who don’t hail from continental Europe).

So in technical lingo, Minniegar was a 0.5HL brewery, our current set-up is 10HL and K2 will be 35HL. But we prefer to use a more familiar unit of measurement to give a layman’s impression of the scale. Here’s Zack on the current site in early April 2013 when the walls had just gone up.

Zack’s a Jack Russell, not a Doberman. We’ll photograph him in K2 as soon as we get him in there…

(Read more about building K1 here.)

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Where was Kinnegar four years ago?

As the clock ticks rapidly in the direction of K2, it’s hard not to think back to what was going on when K1 was coming to life. We’re going to root out some photos of the development phase over the next few days but this photo provides the answer to the first question.

Four years ago, in January 2013, we were still working in the pilot brewery. Rick brewed. Libby packaged. Very straightforward. Here’s a rare photo of Rick at work in what our future American intern, Maxmarie, would immortally dub “Minniegar”. Photography in the steam-filled room was always a bit of a challenge.

We brewed 50L batches and production, by the time we moved out of Minniegar, was 150L per week. That translated into an average of 120L of packaged product, or 240 bottles of beer a week.

Limeburner, Devil’s Backbone, Scraggy Bay and Rustbucket were all born in Minniegar.

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