You might have noticed over the last year or so that we now stock some local craft beers, courtesy of Lacada Brewery, here at the hotel.
We recently had a chat with one of Lacada’s directors, and more importantly their Head Brewer, Laurie Davies about all things craft beer and Causeway Coast!
When and why was Lacada Brewery formed?
Lacada Brewery was initially formed in May 2014 but we didn’t go to market until October 2015. In hindsight everything arrived at the right time just as the craft beer scene here in Northern Ireland was about to take off but for us it was simply a group of people together who wanted to form a co-operative brewery.
We all had various forms of experience in co-ops, food and drink to draw upon and we started with a few beer tasting evenings to get the ball rolling!
How do you draw influence from the surrounding Causeway Coast?
The Causeway Coast, and surrounding local area, has been a focus and mainstay from the beginning. Everyone involved wanted something that celebrated the place we all love.
Unusually, we actually started by selling the co-operative idea to our co-owners before any beer was involved so this meant that we asked them for names right from the beginning!
We wanted to promote the idea of community with a north coast focus on the landscapes and seascapes around us but we also wanted to draw influence from lesser known stories and places. This was to add a “discovery” factor to our beers that would encourage people to go off and ask locals about the area.
A good example of this is our Giant’s Organ IPA which draws its name from the Giant’s Causeway…but not in the way most people would expect!
What is your favourite part of the Causeway Coast?
I’ve been living here for over 30 years now which just about qualifies me as a local…I think!
I love the sense of community, especially amongst the local food and drinks producers, as well as the incredible coast and views around us!
What’s your favourite Lacada beer?
It might seem strange but I honestly don’t have a personal favourite. As Head Brewer I’m always testing and tasting variations of the Lacada beers out there in the world, alongside new and upcoming beers, so it differs from time to time.
It’s an ongoing process so it’s hard to say but our limited edition Salamander Series beer, the Utopian Stout, stood out last year and was named best beer of 2016 by Northern Ireland beer blogger Quare Swally!
Why should someone pick a craft beer over bigger/traditional beers?
Three words – taste and aroma!
I might be biased but when you try a great beer, no matter what kind, by a microbrewery you get the full experience. Everything tastes and smells so much better and you’ll soon discover what real lagers, stouts and ales are supposed to taste like.
You could say beer is the new wine and there really is so much diversity out there!
What are Lacada’s plans for rest of 2017?
We’ve got new beers scheduled for every other month for the rest of 2017 so that should be fun and we also have new beers coming out of barrels planned for 2018.
When we looked back on 2016 we realised that we released up to 16 different beers last year when you consider special editions and one-off casks etc so it’ll be more of the same!
We also have plans to take part in the Portrush beer and food festival again in early October as well as some collaborations with other local food producers so stay tuned!
If that hasn’t whetted your appetite we don’t know what will!
For more information contact us here.