Farmhouse beers from Donegal

Beer Tourism

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.


A Seafarer’s Guide to Kinnegarland: Brewery Boat Trip, Wednesday 28 June

Boat Trip Through Kinnegarland

Ever seen the Kinnegar from the sea? Or wondered where Scraggy Bay is? Any ideas on Limeburner, Otway or the Devil’s Backbone?

As part of Indie Beer Week Ireland, we’re going on a brewery boat trip of Kinnegarland on Rathmullan’s favourite charter boat, the Swilly Explorer. We’ll cruise up the Swilly to see as many of Kinnegarland’s landmarks as we can find, tasting a little of each beer as we go.

The tour departs the pontoon in Rathmullan at 5pm on Wednesday 28 June. Places are very limited and are available on a first come, first served basis. The boat trip costs €20 and is of course weather permitting.

To book ring us on 074 915 8874 or 086 830 1392. You may book for a maximum of two people.


Brewery Tour, Thursday 29 December

With apologies to all those of you who have been patiently waiting for this information, we’ve finally settled on Thursday 29 December at 4pm for our New Year brewery tour.

See our Visits page for further information about our tours. Please book in good time!

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Dates for Kinnegar Brewing Academy, Spring 2017

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To all those of you who have been trying to get your Christmas presents sorted in good time, our most humble apologies. We do admit that it’s tough buying your beer-loving loved one a brewing course when the dates for it aren’t even set. Now they are!

Saturday 22 & Sunday 23 April 2017

You’ll find full details about the Academy here. And this is what some of our hard-working participants have had to say about their experience of past Academies:

Thanks again for a wonderful weekend, the course exceeded all my expectations and it truly nice to know that everyone in your brewery seems to be warm, humorous, humble and passionate in their craft which makes me happy knowing my hard earned cash is going to a good place and not just some evil bastards who want to make a stack of cash.
AG, Spring 2016 (Bucket & Spade)

It was absolutely fantastic! It was such an eyeopener to the science and hard graft that goes into brewing at such a big scale. Rick, you did well to keep talking the whole 2 days. Your throat must be killing today… But everything you said was insightful!
JC, Autumn 2015 (Flying Saucer)

Have to say I really enjoyed the whole weekend and was sorry I had to take off before the first sparge. I was looking forward to cleaning out the mash, honestly.
DL, Autumn 2015 (Flying Saucer)

The combination of theory and practice was not only hugely informative, but thoroughly enjoyable and if anyone thought that brewing craft beer was easy, they only had to be with Kevin and you on the Sunday to see the time and effort it takes to create a masterpiece.
JK, Autumn 2016 (Bucket Brigade)

I enjoyed the weekend immensely. What with Rathmullan’s splendid accommodation and food; the guys’ great company and your own lucid tutoring I am so glad I made the trip.
EW, Autumn 2015 (Flying Saucer)

And of course the prescient email we received from Ben Tyler in December 2015:

Hi Rick,
How did the beer taste today, are we on to a gold medal?
Kind regards,
Ben

One Dublin Beer Cup gold medal and a Beoir “Champion Beer of Ireland” award later, the true value of a place on the Brewing Academy becomes clear!


National glory for Rathmullan x 3

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How many tiddly little towns in the country have enjoyed a week like the one Rathmullan is experiencing just now? Here’s the roll of honour:

Wednesday 25 May
Ronnie’s incomparable Salt n Batter is named top spot for fish n chips in Donegal on Ian Dempsey’s Definitive Listeners Guide to the Best Chippers in Ireland. > Read more

Sunday 29 May
Kinnegar Brewing’s Flying Saucer claims the “Champion Beer of Ireland” title at the Killarney Beer Festival, adding to its gold medal in the Stouts & Porters category and White Rabbit’s silver medal in the Wheat Ales category. > Read more

Monday 30 May
The Beachcomber hits the headlines when listed in The Irish Mirror’s “Best Beer Gardens in Ireland – 19 perfect spots you have to enjoy a pint in while the weather is this good.” > Read more

The record speaks for itself. We’re proud to be part of it!

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The Tardis, and its brewery tours…

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Our brewery was small to begin with — it was built on a very constrained footprint in Margaret and Garrett’s back yard — and over the three years since we started, we’ve really squeezed a hell of a lot into a tiny space. Rachel took this photo recently and named our malt loft “The Tardis”. Somehow we always manage to squeak everything in.

But when we welcomed our first brewery tour after the addition of the final two fermenters earlier this year, we discovered that there’s not much space left over for visitors! So, brewery tours will be for smaller groups from now on but we’ll do our level best not to disappoint anybody.

We have the following dates lined up for tours over the coming weeks:

Saturday 28 May, 3.30pm
Thursday 2 June, 5.30pm
Saturday 4 June, 3.30pm
Thursday 9 June, 5.30pm

Booking is essential on 086 830 1392 or 074 915 8874. For further information see > Visits.

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Brewery tour on Saturday 30 April

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The main feature at Kinnegar this May bank holiday weekend is of course our second Kinnegar Brewing Academy, running on Saturday and Sunday. While the serious brewing students are hard at it in the classroom on Saturday afternoon, we’ll run a less challenging but equally enjoyable brewery tour at 3pm.

Remember that you must pre-book for the tour on 086 830 1392 or 074 915 8874.

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Good luck FDNY!

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Primed on a healthy Donegal diet of Limeburner and Yannaroddy, the Gaelic and Soccer teams of the New York Fire Department are ready to do battle with their local opponents today. We’re rooting for New York on this one — they did after all rescue Libby from the 17th floor of a Fifth Avenue office block in Manhattan back in 1990!

Thanks for coming to visit, boys. Enjoy the rest of your stay in Ireland.

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A Hip Hop beer diversion

Francis Madeira’s charming Hip Hops card game arrived here in Donegal in January and promptly fell between the communications cracks. It’s high time we mentioned that Black Bucket was voted one of Ireland’s two representative beers for the first deck “Brews of the World”, an eclectic mix of well-known and lesser-known liquid masterpieces.

Even if you never play the game, watch the instructional video on the Hip Hops website— it’s guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Hit the photo to open the link:

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You can buy the Hip Hops cards through the website and we’ll also be selling our small inventory through the Taproom over the coming weeks.

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Brewery Tours for St Patrick’s Day and Easter season

Rathmullan and Donegal will be full of life over the St Patrick’s Day and Easter holiday period. We’ll be offering tours of the brewery on the following dates to keep visitors busy:

Saturday 19 March, 3pm
Wednesday 23 March, 5pm

Pre-booking is essential on 074 915 8874 or 086 830 1392. Find further information on brewery tours here.

And remember, the Taproom is open 1–9pm on St Patrick’s Day and then daily, 5–9pm, until Thursday 31 March.


Bumper weekend with celebrations on 3 fronts

We’re generally a bit shy about banging the drum but we really do want to celebrate the achievements of this past weekend. Not least because we want to acknowledge the contribution our colleagues, friends, customers and partners have made to each of these successes!

Dublin Beer Cup | Flying Saucer

Flying Saucer Gold

On Friday at the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fair in Dublin’s Convention Centre we were thrilled to accept the gold medal awarded to Flying Saucer, our Special Export Stout, in the Dublin Craft Beer Cup. This latest medal now hangs proudly beside the silvers and bronzes won by Black Bucket, Rustbucket, Devil’s Backbone and Yannaroddy in 2014 and 2015. And it’s not just the team here at Kinnegar who are gloating — Flying Saucer is the beer made during our first ever Kinnegar Brewing Academy last November, so we have a small army of brewing assistants whose names will forever be associated with the achievement.*

Beoir’s 2016 Beer of the Year Awards | Rustbucket

RB Overview.jpgOn a weekend of pleasant surprises, Sunday morning brought two more reasons to smile. Beoir is an independent group of consumers with the primary goal of supporting and raising awareness of Ireland’s native independent microbreweries. Beoir’s annual awards seek to identify the drinkers’ favourites amongst the beers brewed in Ireland. We are honoured to see Rustbucket standing tall in the First Runner Up spot on this prestigious winner’s podium. Thank you to each and every one of the voters who supported Rustbucket. We are immensely proud.

McKenna Guides Top 100 Restaurants 2016 | The Taproom

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And to crown a dizzying day, in the Sunday Times John and Sally McKenna again named the Taproom as one of the McKenna Guides Top 100 Restaurants in Ireland. What more could we ask for in the week when we gear up to reopen after a short winter break? We’re very grateful to our partners and pals at Rathmullan House and Scarpello & Co for helping us make the Taproom such a success. Great beer deserves great pizza in a great place!

* Upcoming Academy dates: Sat&Sun 30 April/1 May and 15/16 October

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Five great last-minute Christmas gift ideas for your favourite beer lover

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NO.1 | €140

The Kinnegar Brewing Academy

Academy for Christmas

Our first Kinnegar Brewing Academy was a howling success. Now we’ve planned another. Delight your beer-mad loved one with a voucher for our next 2-day theory-and-practice blitz on Saturday 30 April & Sunday 1st May 2016.

> Read more about the Kinnegar Brewing Academy

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NO.2 | €30

The Kinnegar Hoodie

Hoodies for Christmas

As worn by bona fide Kinnegar brewers! The Kinnegar-lover’s fashion statement non plus ultra. Our hoodies come in two different styles — zipped and pouch — and in several different colours. Sizes from Small to XL.

Pouch: Navy / Red
Zipped: Rust / Dark Green / Vintage Red

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NO.3 | €18

Kinnegar Glassware

Glasses for Christmas

Your dearly beloved Kinnegar fan has probably spent the last 12 months nobly resisting the urge to pilfer a Kinnegar glass from some unsuspecting Kinnegar outlet. You can reward that fortitude with a 6-pack of Kinnegar glasses. We recommend our 300ML stemmed model for use with our bottled beers but our pint glasses are also lovely.

N.B. Neither brewer nor brewery dog currently available. Glasses only!

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NO.4 | €15

The Kinnegar T

Ts for Christmas

No self-respecting Kinnegar fan should be without their Kinnegar T-shirt. Three designs available.

The Classic (Super-Kinnegarman) S M L XL 2XL
Limeburner Blue / Devil’s Backbone Red / Rustbucket Orange / Scraggy Bay Yellow / Yannaroddy Purple / Black

Finger Puppets S M L
Black / Red / Royal Blue

Kinnegar Concert Tour S M L
Black / Royal Blue / Anthracite Grey

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NO.5 | €10

The Kinnegar Brewery Tour Voucher

Brewery Tours for Christmas

Stocking filler, Chriskindle, treat for yourself — give somebody something they can really look forward to. Our brewery tours are informative, entertaining and enlightening.

> Read more about Kinnegar brewery tours

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Don’t delay!

Order your Kinnegar Christmas gifts by Sunday 20 December to ensure delivery before the big day.

  • Post & packaging costs not included in above prices (we keep them to an absolute minimum).
  • Payment by PayPal or bank transfer.
  • Orders by email on info@kinnegarbrewing.ie or by telephone on +353 74 915 8874 or +353 86 830 1392.

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Christmas & New Year brewery tours

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To salve your conscience and balance your seasonal indulgences with some proper eduction (and entertainment), plan a visit to the brewery to discover how Kinnegar beers are made. Tours are planned as followed:

Saturday 19 December, 12 noon
Tuesday 29 December, 1pm
Thursday 31 December, 1pm

We’ll add additional tour times on these days, if needed. Remember that you must book in advance on 086 830 1392. Tours cost €10 and last approximately one and a quarter hours.

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Last few spots at the Kinnegar Brewing Academy open to day pupils

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We have plenty of boarders signed up for a weekend of brewing and country house comfort on the 27/28 November. Now we’re opening up the remaining few places to day pupils.

The Academy itself costs €140. Lunches on Saturday and Sunday, as well as Saturday evening dinner in the Cook & Gardener, are optional. They’re bound to be an integral part of the social experience so miss them at your peril!

If you wish to book, contact Rathmullan House on 074 915 8188.


Brewery tour for the Hallowe’en break, Wednesday 28 October

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With school breaks come visitors to Rathmullan! We’ll be offering a tour on Wednesday 28 October at 5.30pm to satisfy the curiosity of any beer-loving visitors who haven’t yet been to the brewery.

Advance booking is essential. Ring us on 086 830 1392 or 074 915 8874 to reserve your spot.

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Follow the Hops to California

Kathryn Murray Hops On Tour

Kathryn Murray shared this great “Hops on Tour” image on her Facebook page. Somebody is taking our mission of following the hops pretty seriously. Surfing and beer — just like Donegal with a slightly different climate! Take a look at Rincon Brewery here.

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Kinnegar Brewing Academy & Rathmullan House combine the theory and practice of brewing with country house hospitality

Rathmullan House

Not many breweries rub shoulders with 4-star country house hotels but Kinnegar is lucky enough to do just that. Those of you who have already visited Kinnegarland know that our taproom resides in the cellar of Rathmullan House, a much-loved seaside retreat on the shores of Lough Swilly. Now you have the opportunity to spend a weekend at the hotel while you learn the theory and practice of brewing.

Day 1 – Brewing Theory (at Rathmullan House)
We cover the cornerstones of brewing, from raw materials through brewhouse operations, fermentation, conditioning and packaging.

Day 2 – Practical Brewing (at Kinnegar Brewing)
As a group we will formulate a recipe for and brew a Kinnegar Special. So, put your wellies on and grab a shovel, it’s time to dig out that lauter tun!

This will be a hands-on experience so we can accommodate a maximum of 12 pupils on the course. For more information and reservations, visit the Rathmullan House website. If you entered our Festival competition to win a spot on this wonderful weekend, we’ll be announcing the winner this week!

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Change to brewery tour schedule as festivals take over

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With all resources channeled towards the Big Grill and the Irish Craft Beer & Cider Festival, a couple of breaks in our regular tour regime are inevitable. We will have no tours on Saturday 15 August or Saturday 29 August. Our popular Wednesday tours continue uninterrupted!

Remember to book tours several days in advance to avoid disappointment. It’s a very small brewery and we have limited spaces available. You can reserve your spot on 074 915 8874 or 086 830 1392.

Follow the Hops