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
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!
It’s finally time to pour Rule of Three, the beer we brewed in late November in collaboration with our pals at Siphon Brewing. The event, Smaakdown17, takes place at Siphon Brewing’s home, the renowned Siphon restaurant on the banks of the canal 10km from Bruges.
So what does “Siphon” mean? A quick look at the criss-crossing landscape of canals and country roads outside the brewery door provides a clue. An equally quick bit of research confirms our host Breandán Kearney’s explanation. “When water has to be carried across a road which is at the same level as or below the canal bottom, an inverted siphon is used instead of a culvert. The siphon effect.”
And in the canals? According to the Michelin Guide “People come to this restaurant from around the Flemish countryside to enjoy the house speciality, eel, as well as their grilled dishes.”
So saltwater, sweet water, hares and eels combine this Friday evening for Smaakdown17 near the picturesque village of Damme in Belgium. On Saturday you’ll find it at the Bruges Beer Festival. We can’t wait.
Midsummer’s day. But only the beginning of summer for everybody here at Kinnegar. On top of a non-stop brewing schedule and our usual weekly labours, the next 12 weeks are crammed full of brewery tours and festivals.
Regular Wednesday and Saturday brewery tours kick off on Wednesday 6 July and we’ll be on tour for five festivals over the course of the summer (see details here).
All hands to the pump…
What? No proper name! That’s right, the fourth in our Kettle Sour Series is being subjected to the usual agonising journey through the tortured terrain of Rick’s brain in the hunt for a name. Making the beer must be a piece of cake by comparison…
We’re loading in for the new Belfast Craft Beer Fest this Wednesday evening but the ultimate deadline for the name is David’s departure from Donegal on Thursday morning. By then he needs a tapbadge in his pocket. And until then, Rick refuses to break a sweat.
You’ve already experienced Geuzberry, Brownknowe and High Glen. This new member of the kettle sour family takes its cue from the white wine making regions of southern Germany, engaging the lovely Hallertau Blanc hop in a recipe for Spring.
Join us on the Lagan this Thursday, Friday and Saturday for a brand new festival experience. We’ll publish our full beer listing shortly. And yes, the words White and Black do figure prominently on the menu.
As many of our Belfast-based supporters will already be aware, the iconic Sunflower pub in the city’s resurgent cathedral quarter is under threat of demolition. Harking back to a dated, and long-discredited approach to urban regeneration, the Belfast planners have decided to level entire city blocks in the quarter, thereby erasing the existing urban fabric, and with it, the Sunflower.
In a few short years, Pedro Donald and his staff have transformed the Sunflower into the best pub in Ulster (2015) and a cultural beacon. They’ve contributed in no small part to the resurgence of the neighbourhood the planners are now targeting for demolition and regeneration.
To the ramparts we say! Help save the Sunflower by signing the online petition form.
> Take me to the petition now!
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.
Although our Irish customers swallow every drop of beer we can produce, sending the odd shipment abroad to test the continental European waters is a lot of fun. The case of Rustbucket we sent to Breandán at Belgian Smaak for his Irish beer tasting (read about it here) earlier in the year was well received.
Tonight Kinnegar takes a French bow, chaperoned to a tasting this time by Liam Dunn. News is in that our case of beer has just landed safely at The Green Goose on Rue des Boulets in Paris. It was left to Libby’s surgical skills to ensure that Geuzberry was properly costumed for his Parisian début.
One of the great things about the blossoming craft beer landscape is the spirit of cooperation amongst the breweries. We’ve managed to completely confound that pervasive Irish inclination to “go it alone” by producing a new Guide to Craft Breweries & Beer on the Wild Atlantic Way.
No fewer than 17 breweries have collaborated to create the guide and it’s a wonderful source of information (and inspiration!) for anybody interested in combining their love of good beer with the magnificent landscape, culture and people of the Wild Atlantic Way. Now’s the time to start plotting your journey from Kinnegar in Donegal to Blacks in Kinsale!
The guide is available in tourist offices and from many good hostelries and tourism providers. Or download the pdf here: Guide to Craft Breweries & Beer on the Wild Atlantic Way
How about this for a team of Kinnegar supporters? It’s good to see our T-shirts thriving in the Carribbean even though it might be a while before our beer makes it that far!
We’d love to see your photos of Kinnegar in far-flung or unusual places. Send them in to us and we’ll add to the gallery.
Craft beer and whiskey festivals are fast becoming favourites on the annual calendar and Kinnegar is gearing up for two big events in the next four weeks. We’ll be loading the Follow the Hops van and heading for Dublin on Friday 27 February and then exactly two weeks later on Friday 13 March. You can check out the festival websites to see what’s in store:
Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fair
Friday 27 February – Sunday 1 March
National Convention Centre, Dublin
Irish Beer & Whiskey Festival
Friday 13 – Tuesday 17 March
We have a couple of new Specials in the tanks that will soon be appearing before a special sitting of the brewery tasting panel. If they pass muster they’ll debut on our festival stands, served alongside our familiar favorites in what’s bound to be a widely diverse offering from the growing numbers of Irish breweries. Not to be missed!
We’re still in the early stages of recovery after four days at this year’s Irish Craft Beer Festival at the RDS in Dublin, very tired but also delighted with the public response to our beers. With the number of good breweries now making great beers in Ireland, we are very honoured by the public’s selection of our Scraggy Bay and Rustbucket as their favourite beers in their respective categories.
We’d like to thank everyone who voted for us, all those who stopped by the RDS to talk with us and try our beers, and everyone who has supported us over the past year.
There are worse jobs than delivering beer to remote hamlets in the Donegal countryside. The second-last stop today was with Aengus at the delightful Glen Bar in Glen, near Carrigart. A smashing view of the Devil’s Backbone was an extra bonus on way home.
Last night was a busy one as we prepared for the debut of Kinnegar’s new taproom at the Cellar Bar in Rathmullan House. We’re ready for action. From 4pm on Holy Thursday we’re delighted to serve our beers alongside the Slow Food Company’s outstanding stone-oven baked sourdough pizzas. Beer and pizza — life doesn’t really get much better.