Sunday 17 December 2023

A visit to Coniston Brewery

Back in the Summer (mid-October) I took the opportunity of being in the Lake District to visit Coniston Brewery. I have a work connection that was dead handy for getting in touch with Ian Bradley who runs the company. I'd been keen to visit for some time so I'm glad I finally got round to it. The brewery has won the highest award for its beers, The Champion Beer of Britain (CBoB), not once but twice, and with two (2) different beers.

The brewery has the cramped look so popular with breweries and the 10bbl brewing vessels are wooden clad. Whole hops are used, which have to be dug out of the copper by hand. 

Don't put your head too close

Fermenting Bluebird (CBoB 1998)

The conditioning tanks (CTs) are shinier and all hard piped in. One of them contains No. 9 Barley Wine (CBoB 2012) which is brewed just once a year. 

The CTs have their own CIP (Clean in Place) set too!

Bottled beer is also available.

The brewery is located behind The Black Bull, where bottles of Bluebird (CBoB) the tell us the beer is best served in s straight pint glass at 58°F. We put this to the test and I have to say the bottle's not wrong. Ian looked after us extremely well, not only keeping us well supplied with beer but giving us t-shirts too! We worked our way across the range up to the barley wine, which is not something you often see on draught. One of my friends hadn't drunk barley wine before and was mightily impressed. 

And even better the other friend I was with was driving so there was no trouble getting poured home. 


  1. Good to see Coniston going strong as I can't remember when I last saw their beers, even in Cumbria !

  2. They cut production post covid so there won't be as much of it around.