I think the name Sacre Brew first appeared on my radar last November when they were let loose at Brewdog Birmingham for a tap takeover. At the time, knowing nothing about the brewery, it’s history or the beer, I hadn’t been intrigued enough to attend said takeover. Poor effort, I know.
A few months later, after I had noticed a lot of Midlands pubs/beer sellers pioneering their creations and being ensnared by their whimsical bottle artwork, I finally did some investigative journalism to find out who or what this ‘Sacre Brew’ really was – by this I mean I obviously just searched them on Twitter.
Lo and behold, Sacre Brew is based in the Midlands. My intrigue grew, as did my excitement in the discovery that my local off license, Wine Lord, had started stocking their Man On The Oss rye saison.
A bold, spicy take on the farmhouse style, it’s a flavour packed summer beer that seemed slightly sacrilegious to be drinking on cold, wet February afternoon. Nevertheless my Sunday spent watching Stand By Me was made infinitely better by the addition.
I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised by the quality of the beer, the early signs were already there. Brewdog wouldn’t let just anybody at the helm on a Friday night unless they knew that the beer being poured was first class. Sacre Brew’s creator Gwen Sanchirico maintains incredible standards in her brewing, a perfectionism that has clearly served her well since founding it in May 2014.
Arriving in Wolverhampton via New York, Gwen has been homebrewing for more than 20 years and is currently producing an extensive range of quirky, rarely seen creations including a mint-chocolate stout, a coconut IPA and a herb infused gruit ale and can certainly be seen as pushing the boundaries for micro-breweries in the region and beyond.
Recently collaborating with the Twisted Barrel Ale brewery for a black wheat Belgian IPA, as well as being announced as appearing at this year’s Birmingham Beer Bash in July, it seems that Sacre Brew won’t be sitting on their successes so far. There’s even a hint on the website of their vision to open up a Belgian-beer-cafe meets American brewpub in the not too distant future.
Being an Albion fan, my inbuilt hatred for the city’s football club perhaps has tarnished my view of Wolverhampton, but I would definitely venture back there with glee if there was promise of a Belgo-American brew cafe. I’m also sure the phenomenal beer consumed there would make the tram ride home that bit more tolerable too.
Until then, Birmingham natives can drink Sacre Brew by the bottle at Cherry Reds and Brewdog on John Bright Street and you can also pick them up at the aforementioned Wine Lord, and at Cotteridge Wines and Stirchley Wines as well.