Our Trip to Durham Brewery #pipstopontour

In this week’s blog we thought we’d shine some light on one of our favourite suppliers, and one of the best breweries in the country, The Durham Brewery. For years we’ve been hearing great things about the tour at their site in Bowburn so we thought we’d pop down and check it out.

The Brewery

Durham Brewery is celebrating it’s 25th anniversary this year and in those 25 years the ethos of the business remains the same. Great beer, made properly, on site.

Every batch goes from ingredients to package on the premises, real ale which leans heavily on the “crafted” element of craft beer. They are proud to remain a microbrewery, with a 10 barrel kit (about 1600L), but the quality is far more important than the quantity.

The Tour

It’s always great to be led on a tour buy someone who is really excited by what they do. Our tour was led by Steve Gibbs, the man who founded the brewery with his wife Christine.

A font of knowledge and brewing experience, Steve did a great job of putting the beers into context. A mix of history and brewing theory brought the styles to life (accompanied of course by some rather generous samples).

The Beers

Although Durham may be seen as a more ‘traditional’ brewer, they’re not short on innovation. Styles like Brut IPAs and Gozes are finding homes at the Bowburn-based innovators, having burst onto the craft market.

Experiments are still undertaken on a small scale (in Steve’s garage) to guarantee the quality and consistency before they are set loose on full scale production. As well as the embracing of newer styles there is also the small matter of their barrel ageing program.

Temptation has been one of the flagship beers of The Durham Brewery for years (although Steve reckons he only got the recipe perfect 2 years ago). A boozy 10% number this Russian Imperial Stout is silky smooth and full of well balanced flavours.

This is the base that Durham have worked with in creating the Diabolus series. Barrel-ageing this beer was a work of genius, and all done in hogsheads on site.

Sounds great, where do I sign up?

Tickets are available online for a date of your choice or you can buy open dated tickets for gifts. At £12 a head it’s well worth the visit, but do remember to get someone else to drive.

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