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Exmoor Ales Ltd
Golden Hill Brewery

Tel: 01984 623798
Fax: 01984 624572

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Exmoor Ales racks up 30 years of brewing and celebrates with new beer Exmoor Antler

In 1980 the art of making beer returned to the old brewing town of Wiveliscombe when Exmoor Ales, or Golden Hill as it was known then, set up its mash tun in the former home of Arnold & Hancock. Since then, the brewery has remained one of the most successful of the first wave of British microbreweries.

To mark this momentous milestone, the brewery has released Exmoor Antler, their first new beer since the launch of Silver Stallion in 2005. Dark amber in colour, it’s a beer that has a lot more bite and character than its 4% abv (alcohol by volume) might suggest. As for what went into the brewing recipe, head brewer Adrian Newman will only let on that ‘we used a blend of four different malts and four hops’. Though he does admit that for the first time ever he used the American hop Cascade, a well-regarded hop that offers floral and spicy aromas on a finished beer.

For more information click here

News Flash!

Jonathan Price collecting the awards for his winning ales Jonathan Price collecting the awards for his winning ales

Exmoor Ales’ winning ways continued at the 18th Tuckers Maltings Festival, organised by the southwest branch of the Society of Independent Brewers. Its sumptuous strong porter Exmoor Beast won silver in the Strong Ales section.

For more information click here

Exmoor Ales sponsor the high performance "Phantom Class" sailing

Exmoor sponsors the high performance "Phantom Class" sailing dinghy in the Southern Series of races.

The Southern Series covers from Plymouth all along the South Coast right up to Bewl SC in Kent, and includes events on many inland lakes as well as sea sailing.

The Phantom Class

For more information click here

ale fox gold stag beast hart hound dog stallion wild cat beast

Exmoor brews five "permanent" ales throughout the year illustrated by the pumpclips on the left above, and five "seasonal" shown on the right.

Permanent range covers the whole spectrum of mainstream beer styles, strengths from 3.8% to 6.6% ABV, and colour from the lightest Golden Ale to the deepest and darkest Porter.

Throughout the year the permanent range is complimented by one of the five seasonal brews, some being available for two months, others for three months. With strengths ranging from 4.0% to 5.0% ABV, these individual beers aim to capture the feel of the season.

Tasting notes by award-winning beer writer Adrian Tierney-Jones, whose work appears in What’s Brewing, Brewers Guardian, Class, the Morning Advertiser, the Field and Beers of the World amongst others. He is also the author of West Country Ales, Pubs for Families and The Big Book of Beer. Read more of his work on www.beeralewhatever.com.

Brewery Drayhorse old methods Arnold and Hancock Antler

Winston Churchill is reputed to have said "…Where in the World is Wiveliscombe…" Sir Winston was likely not a beer drinker!

Wiveliscombe, a Somerset town on the edge of Exmoor has been the heart of West Country brewing for two centuries. The famous Hancocks brewery dominated it and regional economy. Formed in 1807, its vast array of buildings crests the hilltop, known as Golden Hill, and forms the skyline of the town visible for miles around.

At one time the Hancock’s employed half the town’s workforce, and owned the best of the 36 town pubs! After the War, Hancock’s, as many other regional breweries, fell to the consolidation of the many by the few. Eventually in 1959 the site was abandoned.

Exmoor Ales "Golden Hill Brewery" occupied a modest part of the Hancock site in 1980, where it has remained since acquiring more land and buildings as it has grown, continuing something of the history of Wiveliscombe Brew Town, along with a neighbouring local brewery, Cotleigh, situated close by on the local industrial estate.

Images courtesy of Mary Miles, author of "Hancock Brewery". They illustrate something of the historical memories of Somerset brewing on Golden Hill, in Wiveliscombe

Brewery Barrels Brewery Local area Jonathan Adrian

Exmoor Ales typically would be categorised as a small regional brewer.

Founded in 1980, it was then amongst the first wave of "Micro Breweries". The business has invested and expanded progressively becoming the leading cask ale supplier in the immediate region, directly delivering to around 300 outlets and nationally well represented in the well known pub companies on a regular or guest ale basis.

Exmoor had a "flying start" during its early life by winning the Best Bitter national award at the GBBF in 1980…with only its 13th brew. The beer was known simply as "Exmoor Ale", being a classic 3.8% session beer. Many further awards were to follow, and today remains the backbone of the range in the region.

Exmoor’s reputation for innovation and quality is well marked by its multiple award-winning "Exmoor Gold", being the first single malt "Golden Ale", which then started up whole new category of cask ale style throughout the country.

Other particularly distinctive beers in the range would be exampled by "Exmoor Stag", a very serious 5.2% premium bitter (and the Head Brewers favourite) which was initially brewed as the "Centenary Ale" for Somerset County Cricket Club, which became so liked it has been brewed ever since (1990). Also "Exmoor Beast", a heady 6.6% being amongst the most famous in the strong dark porter category of beers.

The development and maintenance of the Exmoor range and quality is fundamentally down to the skills of the Head Brewer, Adrian Newman, and his brewery staff.

The fundamentals of the brewery and brewing process are virtually unchanged since the beginning, albeit the capacity of the fermentation vessels has increased exponentially, the principles of small batch brewing, the best and locally sourced raw materials is what has worked well for the brewery and its customers and consumers.

Jonathan Price has been the Managing Director and owner of Exmoor Ales since 2006 and is committed to maintaining the ethics and style of the business, investing to continue to grow the brewery in line with customer demand and the considerable potential of its brands.”

Brewed in the historic Somerset brewing town of Wiveliscombe, on the fringes of Exmoor National Park, the beers from Exmoor Ales are the regions most popular cask ale.

A range of five regular, and five seasonal cask ales are brewed.

They are available throughout Somerset, Devon, Bristol & Bath and most of the South West directly delivered and also throughout the country by leading wholesalers.

Exmoor bottles its famous "ExmoorGold" and "Exmoor Beast" widely available from major supermarkets, local shops, pubs and restaurants.

Silver Medal

We are proud to be celebrating our 30th anniversary this year and to mark the occasion we have brewed our first new beer since 2005. Exmoor Antler is now available throughout the region and is a darker, 4% beer which we feel complements our existing range of ales. See what you think next time you fancy a pint.