An essential ingredient of our Real Ale & Gin Festival is…Real Ale!
Meet the breweries who are taking part in the Festival this weekend…
The Black Isle Brewery from Inverness has its own organic farm where they grow malting barley for brewing. They even have their own brewery house cow, called Frieda, who eats the malt from the brewery mash tun and gives them 20 pints of fresh creamy milk every day.
Cromarty Brewery is a young, innovative micro-brewery which is family run.
The most local of our real ales is brewed just down the street. Plockton Brewery has been running since 2007 and is another local gem to be proud of.
Next up is StrathBraan. This brewery is based in a modern building within the family farm in Dunkeld. Open since January 2011, the Procter family has a background in the manufacture of microbiological culture media (where there are many similar processes to brewing).
Inveralmond Brewery has been brewing for over a century. Famous for Scottish legends like Ossian and Lia Fail, they are an old favourite for many a festival-goer.
One of our most southerly guests, Tempest Brewery are based in Tweedbank in the borders. Winner of Scottish Beer of the Year at the Scottish Beer Awards, they have been open for business since 2010.
William Bros. Brewing Company is based in Alloa, although they are well known internationally. Alloa was once known as the Scottish Beer Capital, and the guys behind this brewery are keeping this tradition alive.
The ale from Loch Lomond Brewery is brewed with Maris Otter malt, recognised by many brewers as the finest malt available. Loch Lomond has its very own strain of yeast which is cultivated for the brewery every three months.
Another favourite from the Highlands is An Teallach Ale Company. This brewery was opened in 2002 by David and Wilma Orr on their croft in the Highlands.
Skye Ales from the Isle of Skye Brewing Company launched in 1995 with some old schoolteacher friends at the helm. Their first ale – Red Cuillin – is such a hit, they still brew it to the same recipe today. Only the name has changed – they now call it Skye Red.
Craft brewing in Orkney is taken care of by Swannay Brewery. Located on the northwesterly tip of Orkney’s mainland, they brew in a rustic farmstead and are often showered by spray from the Atlantic Ocean in the winter!
Spey Valley Brewery produces a range of distinctive craft beers.
Cairngorm Brewery is keen to keep traditional recipes alive. Established in 2001, it’s situated in the village of Aviemore within the Cairngorms National Park in the Highlands of Scotland.
Finally, we have a relatively new kid on the block, Windswept Brewery. Set up in 2012, it is located in Lossiemouth on the Moray coast and like so many of our other breweries and gin distilleries featured at the festival, the location inspires the overall feel and taste of each sip.