Torrside Brewing, for those who don’t know them, is a brewery based in New Mills, Derbyshire, and nestled over a picturesque gorge called the Torrs. The choice of their name came up “because we knew it would resonate with local people, but was still interesting enough to appeal to people who aren't familiar with the area”, according to Chris Clough, one of the three part-time brewers of Torrside. The other two are Nick Wright, a computer programmer by day and brewer the rest of the time; and Peter Sidwell, a commercial accountant who is also responsible for the business side of things at the brewery.

Since before their launching in Autumn 2015, they are very much a democracy, brewing beers and designing recipes together. It’s a team of three who were all long-standing homebrewers based in New Mills with separate plans about ‘going commercial’ and consequently decided to team up and pool their skills, rather than compete.

Smoked beers and other unusual styles are their speciality, whilst they also make several different styles of IPAs and APAs on the hoppy side. Their first beer ever released commercially was ‘Fire Damage’, a smoked stout. While smoked beer isn’t widely appreciated in the UK, all three brewers love it, so it forms a central part of their varied range. Following the path of many other new breweries (like Buxton, a brewery admired by them all), their aim is to brew interesting beers they’d like to drink themselves.

They also produce a series called ‘Monsters’ - barley wines and other imperial styles – which are often very small batches, and showcase the intensity of hop and malt flavours that these really big beers can carry. All beers are vegan: “There’s no need to use animal products just to clarify beer. We bottle-condition and package it all ourselves at the brewery, to ensure that it’s looked after properly”. Another example of a unusual beer is their recently brewed Sorachia - a triple IPA brewed with 50g-per-litre of Sorachi Ace. It turned out to be one of their fastest selling beers to date.

The branding is another important part of the brewery, and quite a strike of luck: “We're very fortunate in that one of our brewers (Peter) is married to a talented artist. Emma came up with the logo, which again incorporates architectural features from the Torrs and provides all of the artwork for our labels too. We wanted our brand be something original and creative, rather than just paying a graphic design company to produce something for us”, says Chris.

When asked how innovative the brewery can be, Chris does not hesitate: “We believe we are the only brewery in the country to regularly feature a range of smoked beers as part of our lineup, notably Sto Lat (a traditional Polish oak-smoked wheat beer) and Rauchwine (a smoked barley wine). We don’t have a regular core range and we’re also one of very few breweries to regularly use the traditional parti-gyle method of brewing, meaning that we produce multiple different beers from the same batch of ingredients”.

At the moment Torrside brews just once a week, as the brewers still have day jobs as well as the brewery. The plan is to grow the brewery to the point where at least a couple of them can work there permanently: “We're in the process of installing two new fermenters right now, so that will enable us to double capacity in the coming months.

Outside of EeBriaTrade their beers are mainly just in the North West and Midlands. Although, they aim to support the local pubs and build the local beer scene: “We feel we've established ourselves as a part of the community. Our regular brewery tap events are hugely popular locally, and we supply beer regularly to all of the non-tied pubs in the town. We also run bars for the majority of local events, and provide the beers for most local venues too. Our used grain goes to feed cows grazing on the hills opposite the brewery and our used hops go to local allotments. Regarding our own bar, we'd love to have our own taproom one day, but it's not really practical for us at the moment, given the limitations of our premises. At least for the time being”.

THE BREWERS

Nick Wright: Brewer
Nick is a Computer Programmer by day, and a brewer the rest of the time. Weekends are spent brewing, and evenings packaging the beer, as well as the large amounts of cleaning required! While Nick enjoys all beers, he has a special place in his heart for his homebrew speciality, the hoppy pale.
Favourite Beer : I'm Spartacus
Beautiful fruity hoppiness on a solid malt base.

Chris Clough: Brewer
When not working as a Japanese translator, Chris handles the day-to-day running of the brewery, managing sales and deliveries. Chris is an equal-opportunities drinker and brewer, just as happy with all things smoked and dark as with pale and hoppy.
Favourite beer: Franconia
This beer means a lot to me as it won me my first award at the UK National Homebrew Competition and cemented my decision to start up a brewery!

Peter Sidwell: Brewer
With his day job as a commercial accountant, Peter was always the obvious candidate for the duty and reporting side of the business! His homebrewing tastes were more towards stout, porter, smoke, and silliness – his carrot IPA was infamous.
Favourite beer: Sto Lat
Light, very pint-able, and 100% smoked, what could top that? Though the Imperial Porter comes close.

BEERS FOR THE TAP TAKEOVER (29th April 2017)

Sto Lat (2.8% grodziskie - smoked wheat beer)
Yellow Peak (4.2% American pale)
West Of The Sun (4.5% NZ pale)
Paint Your Bandwagon (5.8% Red New England IPA, collab with RIvington Brewing)
I'm Spartacus (6.8% IPA)
Monsters: Fire Damage Export Edition (8.5% smoked stout, 20L)

Buy Torrside Beers

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