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Drygate, Axman IPA

Drygate is apparently “the UK’s first experiential craft brewery and it is (their) intention to collaborate, curate and cultivate”. Hmmm. Few too many buzzwords for our liking, but we’re still listening. “Just a beat from Glasgow's historic heart, the seven peaks of the Drygate brewery sit cheek by jowl with the city's medieval cathedral and gothic Necropolis”. That’s more like it. Glasgow is a great city with some of the finest architecture and one of the best modern art scenes in the UK. Any brewery embracing that has got to be a good thing.

What they leave out of their blurb is equally interesting. Drygate is a collaboration between two big Scottish brewing outfits. Williams Bros Brewing and west-coast heavyweights C&C Group, the brewers behind monster brands like Tennent’s and Magners.

Launched in May 2014 under the seven-peaked roof of an old box factory (that’s what inspired the logo), the Drygate site is home to a brewery, restaurant, events space, sun terrace and bottle shop. A beer hall has a floor-to-ceiling window with a view of the brewery so you can sit and watch the next batch of beer coming to life on a 24-hectolitre brewing plant. Where it gets really interesting or “experiential” in Drygate’s words is how punters can step inside the brewery and learn to brew their own under Drygate’s tutelage. A few bob has been spent on this place, proving it is more than a pet project. It’s well worth a visit.

It’s encouraging to see that Drygate are investing in their people too. Jake Griffin, Allesandra Confessore and Edward Furmston-Evans were cherry picked from some of Scotland’s finest independent breweries to bring the beers to life. The trio are in all in their 20s and if Drygate fulfil their ambitions, they could be the future of Scottish brewing.

The youngs guns have brewed four core beers to date; Outaspace Apple Ale, Bearface Lager, Gladeye IPA (a beer we've featured previously at BeerBods) and this week's beer, the Ax Man Rye IPA. Pouring a dark amber with a slight red hue and a decent rocky white head, there is a grainy whiff (Weetabix anyone?) on the nose and palate along with a smidgin of spice and bags of flavour. It’s an IPA where the malts and rye are centre stage with the hops adding some lovely balance and making it pretty damn drinkable.

Drygate contracted out to alumni of the internationally renowned Glasgow School of Art for the label design, which we think is pretty ace, but forget the artwork, and the ownership… what do you think of the beer?



The geeky stuff...

Style: Rye IPA

Malts: Marris Otter, Rye, Crystal Rye, Carafa

Hops: Chinook, Centennial, Mosaic, Nugget

ABV: 5%

IBU: 40

Original Gravity: 1.046


Put in the fridge for...

30 mins


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