Europe’s first student-run microbrewery is set to open in the North East. Funded by a grant from the Students’ Green Fund, a scheme managed by the National Union of Students, a group of young entrepreneurs from Newcastle University called Stu Bru has produced its first ale in collaboration with Allendale Brewery in Northumberland.
The next move is to build their own plant but it’s one step at a time at the moment for the young beer lovers. Inaugural IPA was produced at Allendale during the Easter holidays and it even featured at last month’s Chelsea Flower Show after being made available at a House of Lords reception.
Stu Bru’s social enterprise scheme runs alongside Newcastle University’s student Brewing Society where members are encouraged to get involved in every aspect of the brewing process from sourcing sustainable ingredients to marketing the finished product.
Inaugural IPA is marketed as “a refreshing twist on a classic recipe bringing happiness through Simcoe and Nelson Sauvin hops”. It aims to be an easy-to-drink summer beer enticing even the most inexperienced ale drinker to enjoy it.
Neil Thomas, Allendale’s head brewer, said: “The Stu Bru team really mucked in and showed a lot of enthusiasm for the process and had some great ideas for their first beer without going over the top. They have produced a really good quality India Pale Ale.”
Stu Bru was part of an award-winning garden exhibited at last month’s Chelsea Flower Show highlighting a national Students Eats project which encourages students to grow their own produce and take on allotments.
A 2.5-barrel Stu Bru plant is planned for Newcastle University’s chemical engineering department in time for the next academic year to be run on sustainable lines in terms of energy and water use. The beers will be available through Newcastle University Students’ Union bar.