Microbreweries in Hertfordshire: 13 of the best
PUBLISHED: 10:40 13 February 2018
Microbreweries make beer in small batches often for local pubs and shops. We have selected 13 of the best microbrewers in Hertfordshire
The Potato Shed, Symonds Hyde Farm, Symonds Hyde Lane, Hatfield
Nestled in the pretty Hertfordshire countryside outside of Hatfield is Symonds Hyde Farm, where, in The Potato Shed, The 3 Brewers of St Albans is causing a beer “revolution”. Co-founders (and friends) Mark Fanner, Pete Zivkovic and Matt Sutton draw water from their very own borehole to brew beer that’s made with local ingredients and enjoyed by patrons in many local pubs.
Beers to try: try a glass of the Special English, a dark-coloured ale made with chocolate malt and described as having a “well balanced, smooth and moreish” taste. Take home bottles or five litre mini kegs of 3 Brewers beers available to buy from Cellar Door Wines in St Albans.
More Hertfordshire foodie content:
The Brewhouse Greys, Therfield Road, Royston
Located just outside Royston in North Hertfordshire, The Buntingford Brewery is run by Rob Scahill and Andy Rawnsley, who, after taking over the brewery have come up with some tempting creations.
Beers to try: Twitchell, Polar Star and Hurricane are three of the more popular brews. Twitchell is a golden bitter with a “refreshingly balanced fruity aftertaste”; Polar Star is a hoppy best bitter; and Hurricane is a fruity bitter with “light malty undertones”. Order beers online, or keep an eye on social media for events.
3. Farr Brew
7 The Courtyard, Samuels Farm, Coleman Green Lane, Wheathampstead, St Albans
Nick Farr is the eponymous creator of Farr Brew who, with his friend Matt Elvidge, runs the business whose beers have become a huge hit with locals and those further afield too. Many local pubs and restaurants serve Farr Brew beers which are produced with the environment in mind (the spent grain even goes to the smallholding’s chickens!). Get in contact with Farr Brew for beer tastings, brewery tours and visit the tap room and bottle shop.
Beers to try: the Quality Classics collection includes the light and refreshing Our Greatest Golden, the dark and moreish Our Best Bitter, and the decadent (and award winning) Our Most Potent Porter, made with local honey and treacle for a complex taste.
22 The Wynd, Letchworth Garden City
In the town centre of Letchworth, Garden City Brewery is busy brewing beers for patrons visiting The Wynd, as this is also a bar serving homemade beers alongside wine, ciders and snacks (open Thursday to Sunday). In the summer, there’s a covered beer garden to enjoy a pint of something and bar snacks made with local ingredients.
Beers to try: there is always something new being brewed at Garden City Brewery, so make sure to keep checking back to find a new favourite.
Church End, Little Hadham
In the idyllic village of Little Hadham, near the River Ash, is Hadham Brewery. Lead by head brewer William Compton, ales are made with spring water from the brewery’s own bore hole and using the latest in casking machinery.
Beers to try: 18ct Golden Ale is brewed with traditional floor-malted barley and is described as having a “hoppy-citrus character, light bitterness in the mouth with some sweetness developing” – pour us a glass! You can order beer in five-, 10- or 20-litre boxes if you can’t find some in your local.
Global Infusion Court, Nashleigh Hill, Chesham
Although the brewery has moved to Chesham, just over the Hertfordshire border, Haresfoot started life in Berkhamsted. Eight local businessmen (and beer lovers) joined forces to revive the local heritage for beer brewing by founding a craft beer brewery.
Beers to try: brews at Haresfoot include Totem, an American style IPA whose name refers to the genuine Kwakiutl native American totem pole that can be found along the Grand Union Canal in Berkhamsted.
7. Mad Squirrel
Unit 18 Boxted Farm, Potten End nr Hemel Hempstead
Before being taken off to the various tap and bottle shops dotted around the local area, the beer at Mad Squirrel begins life at the foothills of the stunning Chiltern Hills in Potten End.
Beers to try: sit in at the Berkhamsted Tap & Bottleshop, with a huge range of beers to try and 14-tap bar to be enjoyed inside or in the hop garden. If you visit the Buckinghamshire taproom in Amersham, you can enjoy artisanal pizzas with your beer – a match made in food heaven. Keep an eye on the website for an updated tap list at the venues.
8. Mix Brewery
Cemmaes Court Road, Hemel Hempstead
One of the smaller breweries on the list, Mix Brewery in Hemel Hempstead was founded after friends of brewer Mick Harrison badgered him to turn commercial so they could purchase his creations. Because of the small batches that are produced at Mix Brewery, there is flexibility to create made-to-order beers and experiment with different flavours – often brewed with hops grown on site.
Beers to try: keep up to date with new brews and core classics on the website.
Unit 47 Hoddesdon Industrial Centre, Pindar Road, Hoddesdon
Named after the river that flows through the town of Hoddesdon, New River Brewery creates ale with its own yeast that’s unpasteurised and unfiltered for flavour.
Beers to try: regular beers include pale ale London Tap, deep amber ale Riverbed Red and triple hopped IPA Five-Inch Drop. Keep an eye out for seasonal brews which have included a giant pumpkin ale called Pumped Up! for the Halloween season.
10. Tring Brewery
Dunsley Farm, London Road, Tring
Before Tring Brewery opened its doors, Tring was without a brewery for over 50 years but Richard Shardlow wanted to bring back a sorely missing piece to the market town. Tring Brewery is proud of its locality, with barley milled on site; the beers being made with water from the Chiltern Hills; and the names of each brew providing a snippet of lore from the surrounding area.
Beers to try: core beers include the quaffable Brock Bitter, the malty Colley’s Dog and the ever-popular Side Pocket for a Toad whose name comes from an old Hertfordshire saying. Monthly and seasonal specials provide a dynamism to offset the core favourites – see the website for a full list to stay updated.