In recent years, the UK has witnessed a craft beer revolution, with a surge in the popularity of craft beer and breweries that are redefining the nation's beer culture.

This movement has transformed the traditional landscape dominated by mass-produced lagers, paving the way for a diverse and innovative craft beer scene.

We thought we'd explore the recent history and growth as it really has helped shape opportunity for Cornish craft beer like ours.

The Origins of Craft Beer in the UK:
The roots of the craft beer movement in the UK can be traced back to the late 20th century when a handful of pioneering brewers sought to break away from the mainstream beer industry. Inspired by the American craft beer revolution, these visionaries aimed to create unique, flavourful beers that celebrated quality ingredients and traditional brewing methods. These beers remain part of most breweries line-ups, we are no different still creating more American style beers like Back Road West Coast IPA - this sort of craft beer leans towards amber hues and more bitter notes.

Small Independent Breweries:
One of the defining features of the modern craft beer movement is the proliferation of small, independent breweries across the UK. These establishments, often referred to as microbreweries, prioritise quality over quantity, experimenting with a wide range of ingredients to produce distinctive and innovative brews. This shift towards localised and artisanal production has not only elevated the quality of beer but has also invigorated local economies and communities. This is was us a number of years ago, and we have been lucky enough to grow as a Cornish brewery taking opportunities to develop, diversify and grow production and capacity whilst staying true to our micro-brewery heritage. It's just that Cornish beers like Meor IPA, Porth Pilsner, Alba IPA and Hella Pale Ale are now available in national retailers like Tesco and Spar.

Diversity in Flavours and Styles:
Craft brewers in the UK have embraced experimentation and innovation with ingredients and brewing techniques, leading to an explosion of diverse flavours and styles. From hop-forward India Pale Ales (IPAs) to rich and complex stouts, craft breweries are constantly pushing the boundaries of what beer can be. This diversity has not only captivated seasoned beer enthusiasts but has also attracted a new wave of consumers eager to explore unique and exciting taste experiences. We always keep this creativity in mind as a craft brewery in Cornwall. You'll find blackberry infused beers like our Barnoon Belgian Dubbel, Oatmeal stouts like Zennor and craft beer collaborations like La Pina Espresso West Coast IPA or our Roast Potato and Rosemary Weizen.

Collaboration and Community:
Craft beer is not just about the liquid in the glass; it's also about the sense of community and collaboration that surrounds it. Many craft breweries actively engage with their local communities, hosting events, collaborating with other businesses, and creating a sense of shared passion among their patrons. This communal aspect has become a key driver of the craft beer movement, fostering a sense of connection between brewers and consumers. As a Cornish brewery we are similarly focused on our home and our community, we love meeting and greeting our locals in the taproom on a weekend and serving up pints of Cornish beer at local festivals like the Royal Cornwall Show or the St Ives Food and Drink festival.

Changing Consumer Preferences:
The rise of modern craft beer in the UK is also closely tied to changing consumer preferences. As more individuals seek authenticity, flavour diversity, and a connection to the producers of their beverages, craft beer has become an appealing choice. Consumers are increasingly willing to explore different styles, support local businesses, and prioritize quality over quantity, aligning perfectly with the ethos of the craft beer movement. As a leading brewery in Cornwall we love to focus on getting the recipes and processes spot on to ensure great quality craft beer tie and time again.

The growth of modern craft beer in the UK represents a dynamic shift in the nation's beer culture. From small independent breweries to diverse flavour profiles, this movement has not only elevated the quality of beer but has also created a vibrant and engaged community of brewers and consumers. As the craft beer scene continues to evolve, one thing is certain – the passion for unique, flavourful, and locally crafted beers is here to stay, shaping the future of the UK's brewing landscape. Here at St Ives Brewery, we strive to learn and evolve as a Cornish craft beer producer.

Join us for the ride

January 17, 2024