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Lost and Grounded, Keller Pils

Lost and Grounded appeared as new kids on the block in Bristol last year. We asked co-founder Alex Troncosco to provide us with a bit of back story.

“The brewery was started by me and my partner, Annie Clements.  We had been living and working all over Australia, had a stint in Belgium, and found ourselves in London.  One day we came to Bristol and decided it seemed like a nice place to build a brewery!  We are still fledgeling – just shy of one year in – and are growing all the time.”

This seems characteristically humble of Alex (Alejandro) Troncoso and his partner Annie Clements. Born in Guatemala Alex had wanted to be a brewer since he was 18. After moving to Australia in his early 20s, where he met Annie, he set about trying to make this ambition happen. Only it wasn’t that straightforward. It took seven years and over 20 rejection letters before he finally got a break in the brewing industry. This came in the form of making cream liqueur at the now defunct Stockade Brewery in Melbourne. It wasn't exactly the more glamorous side of brewing.

Thankfully it led to him getting an offer at Little Creatures in Fremantle, Western Australia. Make no mistake this was a big gamble for Annie and Alex as they up’d sticks and relocated the 2,000+ miles for Alex to take up a junior position in craft brewing. But it paid off. Alex worked there until 2012 before they relocated again. This time in London where Alex took on the role of brewing director at Camden Town Brewery.

This path inexorably led to Alex and Annie wanting to start their own brewery. It would be the culmination of a lot of thought and a lot of travel. It would be on their terms and by their rules. For starters, there would be just five beers (it was nearly just two!) and there wouldn’t be a double IPA in sight. In fact, there wouldn’t be a pale ale at all in the core range. What gives?

“We were thinking about what to make and eventually figured out that we love the complexity of brewing lager and the idiosyncratic nature of Belgian beers.  We don’t say we are really making ‘German’ or ‘Belgian’ beer, but rather we are taking influence from those great brewing nations and combining with all of our past experience in brewing other beers such as the mountains of Pale Ale that I used to make in my earlier career at Little Creatures in Australia.”

This week we’re featuring their Keller Pils, a glorious lager beer. We’ll let Alex tell you why they chose this for their range.

“We love the simplicity of this style of beer. The inspiration came from a visit to the hop harvest in Tettnang a few years ago when I was staying at a brewery guest house and was having dinner and ordered their Kellerpils: it was fantastic, bright, vibrant, a touch resinous, and just seemed like a beer that offered so much from simple ingredients.  So that is what we are trying to do in our own way – make a beer that is simple in composition, but has finesse and depth of character.  What we enjoy is the fact you can think about it and analyse it in your mind, or you can simply just drink it – the choice is yours.”

We can’t recall the last time we got so excited about the art on a beer label. It’s just so… different. All the label art is all by Bristol-based illustrator Alexia Tucker and the five labels for each of the different beers can be strung together to form one gorgeously playful landscape piece (see banner image above). If you need another excuse to try one of each of their core beers then the artwork is definitely up there. 

Lost: unable to find one’s way; not knowing one’s whereabouts.

Grounded: a person who is sensible and has a good understanding of what is really important in life.

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