Mango Unchained, Shindigger
If Rubicon made beer…
Shindigger Brewing Co. founders George Grant and Paul Delamere met whilst they were studying at Manchester University. During their freshers’ week no less. Inspired by American-style hop forward beers they started brewing together in their third year, having bought a homebrew kit on a whim. With no shortage of friends willing to sample their early brews, it wasn’t long before they were taking it house parties. And selling it, they were business studies students after all.
After graduation, the next, most obvious step was to do this as a proper business. Armed with a small government loan, Shindigger Brewing Co. was launched late 2013. We've featured their beers a few times since then but the last time we put a Shindigger in our subscription box was back in the summer of 2016.
We were keen to find out what they had been up to these past two years. Over to George…
“We have been growing. Our growth rate has been 50% each year. We are still shadow brewing and have added new partner breweries to our network - we currently brewing 80,000 pints per month. Distribution has been growing nicely with the beers now distributed from Brighton to Glasgow. We’ve also dipped our toe in the water with export. The team is also growing. Two years ago we were a team of three people, today we are seven. In summary, things have been moving quickly and it’s exciting to be in an environment that’s constantly evolving.”
George and Paul from Shindigger
George and Paul use the term "shadow brewing" because they don’t actually have their own brewery. Instead they use other breweries kit, capacity and experience to make the beers they have developed on their pilot kit. It’s clearly working out for them and has the benefit of allowing them to diversify rather than invest in shiny new brewing kit. George again…
“Apart from perpetual new releases, we are developing our events arm ShinDigger Sessions. After throwing a couple of successful 1,000 capacity events in Manchester City Centre in the last two years, we are now planning something bigger and better for summer 2019.”
This diversification hasn’t distracted them from progressing their brewing skills.
“We have been experimenting a lot more with new recipes. This has been a natural progression after previous years were spent establishing the core range. Once the core range was built, and we had been gradually building our brewing knowledge, we felt more confident for pushing our boundaries with new beers. Since then we have released fruit infused pales, coffee pilsners and coconut stouts. Paul, my business partner, and I also love New England styles - we have been on a research trip to New England and have released a handful of New England IPAs. In general, coming up with an idea for a beer, and then creating it in real life and hopefully something you truly enjoy is a highly rewarding process and one of the funnest things about being in the industry.”
This week’s beer, Mango Unchained, is a prime example of this. Part of series of beers that showcase tropical fruit this one has been their biggest hit.
“Our forte is session beers, and we felt blending with fruits was an innovative way to experiment in this category. Mango Unchained has been the big hit of all the special releases. In October just gone, it accounted for a fifth of our overall production which is pretty mad for a fruit beer!”
It’s fun watching George and Paul grow their business and we’re excited to see what happens next. We think you will too.