St Andrews students with a taste for something local will be pleased to hear that the town now has its very own brewery for the first time in more than 100 years.
Eden Beers, a craft beer company set up by Fife businessman, Paul Miller, has already begun producing several brews which can be found around town in shops and restaurants, such as Mitchell’s on Market Street.
The first brews are the Clock Brew, which is a traditional Scottish ale, an IPA named the 19th Brew, a Seggie Porter, which is based on a historic local recipe, and a Blonde Beer.
Mr Miller built his brewery on a portion of the defunct site of the Guardbridge Paper Mill, which is now owned by the University of St Andrews.
The company aims to initially produce about 25 barrels a week on the site, in both cask and bottle. Mr Miller himself looks forward to building on the history of the site with a new industry.
When interviewed by The Citizen, he commented: “We have a good combination of a brand new modern facility producing great craft beers on a historic site, and we will be doing our own kegging, casking and bottling.”
He is also very enthusiastic about keeping the product as local as possible in its manufacture: “We are using a very significant proportion of very local ingredients and disposing of our ‘spent grains’ at the local farm. ‘Food miles’ really will be at a minimum,” he said.
University students seem equally engaged in the new brewery. The St Andrews Eden Beer Club, set up for the benefit of those interested in learning about the brewery, has garnered 150 members since its launch in Freshers Week.
Others have discovered Eden Beers independently. Sean McDonald, a second year Film Studies and Social Anthropology student, found the beer in a local deli. “I was shocked to find out that the town had its own brew, and thoroughly enjoyed the taste,” he commented. “It’s nice to get a proper Scottish Ale that represents the town of St Andrews.”
Eden seems to value a bespoke drinking experience. The company will produce special edition beers, such as an Edradour Whisky range, and also accepts special orders; for these, customers can watch their beer’s creation from beginning to end. For most students, though, the location of the brewery is enough: As first year History student Mark Tomlinson noted, “having a beer brewed right in St Andrews makes the drinking experience more special.”