Meet the Original Female Micro Brewer in Ireland
Nov 02 2019
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An Riasc, Ballyferriter, Kerry,
Beoir Chorca Dhuibhne - West Kerry Brewery. Founded in 2008 by Adrienne Heslin at Tig Bhric a rural country pub in the West Kerry Gaeltacht on the Dingle Peninsula.
Tig Bhric & West Kerry Brewery became a first in many regards ; first micro brewery & brew pub in Kerry, and Adrienne became the first female micro brewer.
The brewery was established as a cask brewery producing traditional ales and served through beer engines (hand pumps) A little ahead of it's time with regard to the possible interest and appetite for non carbonated beers which are primed and secondary fermented in their casks.
The main emphasis at the outset which still holds well today was quality, small batch beers brewed only with well water, predominantly Irish malted barley.
The water which is 150 feet below the brewery was actually sunk in 2000 to service the newly renovated pub and new guesthouse along with the family home. And it was having that source of pure water which resonated with Adrienne, an artist and sculptor.
By 2006 she was cooking for customers, everything prepared in house a range of soups, fish soups and chowders. It seemed a natural progression to take that cooking approach to brewing, essentially swapping the kitchen for brew house!
Driven by creativity Adrienne realized the huge advantage in having a publicans license. So with great naivety put funds towards purchasing a small 2.5 BBL cask brew kit. The original aim was simply to sell through her own pub, which was struggling like a lot of other rural pubs.
The popularity of the beers allowed for greater exploring and in an effort to bring more terroir so to speak, garden botanicals were added to seasonals which have since become known as the Riasc Range after the town-land they are situated in.
Slowly the brewery has grown with its limited finance and now brews 10 BBL in a week, the full range of 9 beers all brewed and packaged in house. The love of food and flavor will be indulged alongside an offering of lunch from the Brewers Kitchen where beer and its components are utilized in the dishes.
A trip through the garden to the brewhouse followed by a sampling of beers and a question and answer session for beer enthusiasts in the beautiful surrounds that are Tig Bhric.
This event is part of Taste the Island