The Harbour Brewing Company opens for business making craft beer in Cornwall

You have to admire the bravery of anyone setting up a food and drink business in the “current economic climate” – the only climate getting colder.

So news of a new brewery being set up in Cornwall is welcome. I haven’t had time to visit the Harbour Brewing Company yet or sample their ales, so will save comment for then and I look forward to doing so.

The brewery, set up by Rhys Powell and Eddie Lofthouse, officially opens for business today.

In the meantime, here’s what they themselves are saying about their operation.

Rhys Powell and Eddie Lofthouse have set up the Harbour Brewing Company


Two Cornish brewers have made their dream a reality and are launching a new craft brewery in North Cornwall.

The official opening of The Harbour Brewing Company will take place on 20th January 2012, where Dan Rogerson MP and Vice Chair of the Parliamentary Beer Group will officiate.

Brewer Rhys Powell and Eddie Lofthouse turned their dream in to reality in early 2011 by setting up the Harbour Brewing Company from scratch, based on the ethos of creating a craft brewing process and brand.

They apply a progressive and innovative approach to their beer style and brewing technique, whilst honouring traditional and proven methods to produce a range of full flavoured, balanced and creative beers.

Eddie said: “We are committed to making beers that are contemporary and deliver an uncompromising taste experience. We use pure Cornish spring water sourced on the hillside next to the brewery, and only the finest raw materials. We believe this is the only way to deliver a premium quality product.”

Starting with an installation of a brewery system which allows the brewing to be as creative as possible, their business took format their premises near Bodmin. The 10 British brewers barrel (bbl) system was designed in California and built in Hungary by the American firm Bavarian Brewing Technologies.

Rhys, who studied brewing and distilling at Heriot Watt University in Edinburgh, explained their unconventional equipment choice: “We chose a combined mash lauter tun, rather than a separate mash tun and a lauter tun, as it gives us all round flexibility with process control and use of adjuncts. It’s more efficient than a traditional British set up.

“We’ve also gone for sealed cyclindroconical fermentation vessels rather than traditional open vessels as it is more hygienic, allows faster fermentation, and ease of yeast harvesting.”

The business partners’ aim is to create a quality, great tasting product, which is different to other Cornish Beers in both taste and branding.

Speaking about the inspiration for the Harbour Brewing Co, Eddie said: “Mass-market bland beer aimed at gaining a market share is not what we are all about. We are all about taste and creativity.

“Beers from all over the world inspire us. The craft beer scene in the USA is an obvious place to draw inspiration and ideas, but there are great breweries and beers from all over the world.

“We are a product-focused business and for us it’s not all about profit, we have set out to make great beers that people enjoy drinking.”

Harbour Brewing Co have a starting range of four different beers including: Harbour India Pale Ale, their strongest beer made using a blend of six British and American hop varieties; malt driven Harbour Amber Ale; Harbour Light Ale; and the Czech-inspired pilsner Harbour Lager. All of the range will be available on draft and in bottles.

They are also working on speciality beers for their Harbour Special range, which will push the boundaries and incorporate some quirky ingredients including cassia bark, bog myrtle, rhubarb and chilli.

Competition for the Cornish lager market

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