Showing posts with label Dead Centre Brewing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dead Centre Brewing. Show all posts

Monday, November 22, 2021

Athlone Food Circle launch showcase video

 Athlone Food Circle launch showcase video

Anne Sheehy (Bastion Kitchen)

Athlone Food Circle have just launched the first in a series of videos showcasing the surprising diversity of food choices in the medieval midlands town. Member businesses represent everything from fine dining to coffee culture as well as excellent food and drink producers from the local area. The Athlone Food Circle Showcase Video is available on and on social media. Go direct to the You Tube version here.


Multi-award winning restaurants Thyme and The Fatted Calf are well known in the world of gastronomy. The Villager gastropub in Glasson represents all that’s good in casual dining while cafés like Beans & Leaves and Kelly’s promise much as daytime eateries. Little gems like the Bastion Kitchen whose café sports not only outstanding baking, but an exceptional vegan and vegetarian menu, all made in house.


On the producer side, Dead Centre Brewing is almost unique amongst breweries with its taproom and fully licenced pizzeria. New kids on the block Praliné Chocolaterie are making a real impact with their hand-crafted chocolates.


Thyme Restaurant

These are just some of the businesses in the fledgling network which is set to raise the profile of food and drink in the Athlone area. Under the guiding hand of Chair Deirdre Adamson, Head Chef at Glasson Lakehouse, the network has also developed a compelling food story for Athlone and presented a series of training seminars. Prospective members are invited to email

Athlone Food Circle video is supported by Athlone Chamber of Commerce and CEDRA.

Thursday, November 11, 2021

A Quart of Ale± #76. On the craft journey with a session of Mescan, Land & Labour, Eight Degrees and Dead Centre

A Quart of Ale± #76

On the craft journey with a session of Mescan, Land & Labour, Eight Degrees and Dead Centre


Mescan Seven Virtues “Old Brown” 7.1%, 330 bottle Bradleys

Old Brown, or Oud Bruin in Flemish, is a dark beer from Mayo’s Mescan with a mild sourness that has been brewed in West Flanders since the 17th century. Mescan fans, and more, will know that Bart, one of the two principals in Mescan, is a Belgian.

The colour is indeed a dark brown with an off white head that doesn’t hang around too long. Aromas are a little on the funky side, a slight sourness in the mix. Close to black in colour, yet the beer has a light enough body, a kind of ethereal mix where sweet and sour notes happily coexist. In other words, this Old Brown is quite something else, pretty unique so get out there and gather up as many of the limited bottling of just 1400 litres, a very limited release indeed.

They say: We are really excited about this beer - Old Brown, or Oud Bruin in Flemish, is a dark beer with a mild sourness that has been brewed in West Flanders since the 17th century. Our Old Brown has spent over 2 years in oak where it underwent a secondary fermentation with Brettanomyces yeast in the wood. 

The water for Mescan beers comes from deep underneath Croagh Patrick via a spring beside the brewery. Malts, hops and yeast for the beer come from Belgium. All Mescan beers are vegan-friendly.

Land & Labour Crimson Kriek Framboise, 5.5%, 375ml bottle Bradleys

Crimson is the Kriek Framboise (cherry, raspberry) blend produced by the Land & Labour mixed fermentation operation (under the guidance of Tom Delaney) within the Galway Bay brewery in Oranmore. Here they make Spon (spontaneously fermented beer) - think wild yeasts and cool ship. 


Let Land & Labour tell you about this one: We aged 1 year old spontaneously fermented beer on 830 grams per litre of sour cherries for 6 months. Before bottling we blended another Spon beer aged on 300 grams per litre of raspberries with the cherry beer. The final assemblage of 75% Cherry beer & 25% raspberry beer transcends both their individual selves.

With all that fruit involved, you’d expect it to be fruity; and it is. It is also sour, not perhaps as sour as a real sour, but it can take your breath away if you are not expecting it. In other words, it takes a bit of getting used to. But it is well worth the effort. 

Cap & Cork.

Certainly a different animal to the Chouffe Cherry whose bitterness is on the lower end of the scale. Still it is not too difficult to get over that initial puckering from our Land & Labour and to go on and enjoy it.

Land & Labour were struck by the “fruit saturation” early on “..we decided not to mess with the fruit saturation by further blending more aged beer before bottling (standard practice ). By not blending back we’ve maintained its incredibly high fruiting level & have managed to preserve all the fun & intensity of these beautiful fruits in each bottle. Even after 6 months bottle conditioning it’s as vibrant now as the day it went in!”

Colour is a cloudy ruby red and you’ll spot little bubbles clinging to the glass. There’s a lovely head of pink froth but it is short-lived. The fruity flavours are prominent on the palate and the finish is dry, sour and superbly refreshing. 

Interesting label note: this is an unfiltered unpasteurised beer. It’s alive. So is the yeast. Keep it, grow it, brew your own!

Limited number of 375ml & 750ml bottles.

  • ABV: 5.50%
  • RRP:  €15.00 approx
  • Source: Bradleys, Cork
  • Stockists: Specialist off licences.

Eight Degrees Original Gravity “Hoppy Lager” 5.7%, 440 can Bradleys.

Certainly looks like lager with its light gold colour and soft white head. “It’s a beer packed with hoppy possibilities,” say Eight Degrees and the aroma is an early illustration of that point.

The blend of new and old world hops makes this a generous lager, it is after all harvest time! Quite a concentration of flavour, almost akin to what you’d expect from a dubbel. Very generous indeed but the refreshment factor, an essential factor in lager, is not neglected and it finishes clean and deep.

Always look forward to the Eight Degrees food pairings and here they are: This Oktoberfest-style bier will go superbly with traditional Oktoberfest-style food: bring on great big würstl with plenty of mustard and sauerkraut, warm pretzels and that spiced cheese-butter spread called obatzda, a spit-roasted half chicken and roasted ham knuckles. A plate of spaetzle or semmelknödel and that’s you filled up until Christmas. At least you have this hoppy lager to cut through all that dense, rich food. If you have a chance – or can take any more food – try this beer with Dampfnudel, those sweet steamed dumplings, and see how the fresh citrus notes brighten up what could otherwise be a heavy dish.

Quite a lot to be going on with. Personally, I’m inclined to try it with Skeaghanore Confit Duck leg and any kind of cabbage from boiled (Sweetheart, Greyhound or Savoy) to sauerkraut to roast.

This is the third in the brewery’s ORIGINAL GRAVITY and the can art work this time is by Niamh McCarthy of Yellow Lion Studio. This illustration represents the freedom that lies ahead of us, with opportunities and possibilities on the horizon. It’s all about the adventures we can have again, embracing Ireland, the beautiful scenery and nature we have on our doorsteps.

Discover the artist:
Etsy: Yellow Lion Studio
Instagram: Yellow Lion Studio

Geek Bits
Malt: Irish lager malt, Carapils.
Hops: Lublin, Hallertau Tradition, dry hopped with Loral and Mandarina Bavaria.
Get social: #ORIGINALGRAVITYHoppyLager
Availability: 440ml cans, limited draught.
IBUs: 27Launch Date: October 2021.

* You may well be asking what is Original Gravity? A gravity reading taken just prior to yeast being added, or pitched, is referred to as the original gravity (OG). The OG will provide the brewer with a good idea of the potential alcohol percentage for that particular beer more here

Dead Centre Common Element Extra Pale Ale 4.1%, 400 can Bradleys

Brewed by Athlone’s Dead Centre on Pale Malt and Chateau Wheat Blanc, this Extra Pale Ale is hopped with Talus and Citra for lots of bright hop character. 

An inviting gold colour with a bright white head is what you see. And it is hazy. Citrus and floral are what you smell in the aromas. It is bright and immediately refreshing on the palate with the malts showing up well to balance; excellent mouthfeel and good depth of flavour. One for your session list!

They say: Dead Centre is not a faceless corporation…milking the beer industry for all it’s worth. Instead, we’re a tight knit crew that relies on friends, family, colleagues and other breweries to create a product that we can truly be proud of.

Fresh, flavoursome and (wherever possibly) local ingredients are what give our beer it’s character. Cutting corners here is not an option at Dead Centre Brewing. We believe you get out what you put in…so only the best goes in.

And there’s pretty good stuff coming out. This Athlone outfit are worth keeping an eye on.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

A Quart of Ale± #74. On the craft journey with a session of Lineman, Dead Centre and Eight Degrees

A Quart of Ale± #74

On the craft journey with a session of Lineman, Dead Centre and Eight Degrees


Lineman Sundrops Table Beer, 3.3%, 440 can Bradleys

A low abv beer, this from Lineman, a Dublin based independent brewery. 

Sundrops is the name and the colour is sunny, with much haze about.  The head sinks without too much delay. Aromas are rather special, thanks to the hops and yeast from down under. The Ozzie hop Topaz is bright and breezy and an efficient bittering agent while Nelson Sauvin, pretty popular these days, is known for its exotic fruits.

Sauvin is, I’ve read, shorthand for the white wine grape Sauvignon blanc (popular in New Zealand), and this beer certainly makes both the olfactory organs and the palate buds sit up and take notice before a lip-licking finish. All this with an abv of just 3.3! 

They are touting it as “A fantastically balanced sessionable beer” and I wouldn’t disagree! It is available in 440ml cans, is unpasteurised and unfiltered. Suitable for vegans.

Dead Centre Teeny Tiny Micro New England Pale Ale, 3.3%, 440 can Bradleys

A good early whiff of hoppy citrus indicates that this Teeny Tiny will be no weakling on the flavour side. Teeny Tiny, with its cloudy orange-y colour is, as its Athlone producers insist, ”a small but perfectly formed New England IPA”. 

Fresh and indeed loaded with flavour and an excellent balance between hops and sweet honey malt, I’d be happy to imbibe a few of these on a session or slip one or two in between some heavyweights.

Hops used are Citra, El Dorado and Idaho7 and its quite a beer at 3.3abv.

They say: Fresh, flavoursome and (wherever possibly) local ingredients are what give our beer its character. Cutting corners here is not an option at Dead Centre Brewing. We believe you get out what you put in…so only the best goes in.

Dead Centre have installed a beautiful copper clad brewery in their Brew Pub right on the banks of the River Shannon. “Serving a full range of wines, gins, soft drinks teas and coffees…our focus is first and foremost on great quality craft beer from our own brewery as well as local, guest breweries."

The brewpub is casual, laid-back and chilled. "We have four Dead Centre taps constantly pouring as well as 4 guest taps to make sure we always have a wide and interesting range available at the bar.”

Dead Centre Marooned Oatmeal IPA, 5.5%, 440 can Bradleys

An amber orange body topped with a foamy white head that tends to stick around, even from the can. Citrus elements figure in the aromas and on the smooth palate too and here the brewers give much credit to the locally grown and certified organic Kilbeggan oats. Flavours tend towards orange zest in the mouth before a classic bitterness takes over towards the dry finale.

Dead Centre is Westmeath’s first and only craft brewery. “Marooned, our flagship beer, has a silky smooth body, a result of using locally grown and certified organic Kilbeggan oats. This simple malt base delivers outstanding mouthfeel and gives the hops a perfect platform to shine.”

Malts:  Pale Malt, Red X and Kilbeggan organic oats.

Hops: Perle, Simcoe and Mosaic.

Eight Degrees Kveik Pale Ale 5%, 400 can Bradleys

This Pale Ale is named after a unique Norwegian Kveik that produces a tropical flavour and complex aroma. And I’m not talking about hops here. Kveik is a yeast. American Ale Yeast and the British Brett may be tops of the pops in yeast but Kveik is coming up fast, another illustration that “brewers and beer drinkers owe everything to these single-celled fungi”, that quote from Craft Beer for the Geeks. Yeast is responsible for many of the flavour compounds in beer including floral, fruity and spicy notes.

Back to our glass. Colour is a hazy dark gold and a fluffy white head lingers. Aromas are mostly tropical. Tropical also on the palate, multi-layered with  tangerine and pineapple getting a turn as the sips roll softly in. Slightly spicy too and there’s a good dry finish. Very quaffable indeed and highly satisfactory.

They say: It is packed full of Mandarina Bavaria, Cascade and Simcoe hops: lots of fruit and citrus flavours, with a backbone of grapefruit and pine. We’re adding Hornindal Kveik to the mix, a Norwegian yeast that brings some lovely tropical esters to the party. Dry hopped with HBC 522 and HBC 630. (Terrible names, great hops).

This is the second of their 2021 Original Gravity series which celebrates ten years in business for the Mitchelstown brewery. They ran a competition looking for artworks and the winners are featured on this series of five limited beer releases, giving emerging artists a can-sized exhibition space.

The Kveik Pale Ale design comes from with Michael Donnelly of Woolly Mammoth. Michael’s joy at getting out into the great outdoors after the lockdowns is reflected in his design which “depicts the beauty that this country has to offer and the amount of activities we can do…”. Discover more of his work on Instagram:  @woollymammothdesign

As always, Eight Degrees have food suggestions: 

Smooth, snappy and just right for an aperitivo. Puglian taralli – those curled up, crunchy little breadstick bites, especially good when flavoured with fennel – are a great pre-dinner nibble to have alongside this beer. Make up a platter of your favourite crostini (topped with ’nduja and crushed peas) or bruschetta (tomato and aged balsamic for the win) to contrast with the tropical fruit flavours. If you’re heading into the great outdoors with this beer, try it with halloumi burgers, campfire fish tacos or a barbecued steak with piquant salsa verde.

Get social: #OriginalGravityKveikPaleAle

Sunday, May 23, 2021

A Quart of Ale± #52. On the craft journey with Amber & Red Ales.

A Quart of Ale± #52

On the craft journey with Amber & Red Ales. 

Do you know your amber from your red?

This may help. Then again it may not!

"Amber ale is an emerging term used in Australia, France and North America for pale ales brewed with a proportion of amber malt and sometimes crystal malt to produce an amber colour generally ranging from light copper to light brown. A small amount of crystal or other coloured malt is added to the basic pale ale base to produce a slightly darker colour, as in some Irish and British pale ales.In France the term "ambrée" is used to signify a beer, either cold or warm fermented, which is amber in colour; the beer, as in Pelforth Ambrée and Fischer Amber, may be a Vienna lager, or it may be a Bière de Garde as in Jenlain Ambrée. In North America, American-variety hops are used in varying degrees of bitterness, although very few examples are particularly hoppy. Diacetyl is barely perceived or absent in an amber ale." Source: Wikipedia

Brú Red Ale, 4.2%, 330ml can Bradleys

It’s a red ale and it is red with a pillowy off-white, coffee dusted head that shrinks as you drink. Toffee and caramel in the aromas. And that continues onto the palate, impressive entry as the malt and the hops each get a share of the limelight as the pleasant experience continues. 

They say: An aromatic red ale for today’s drinker…BRÚ Red Ale is a sophisticated and modern beer.

They also say: Mirroring the unwavering strength of Celtic figure Cuchulainn, the red ale is a mighty example of the traditional Irish style.

Well, modern or traditional, it certainly is mighty!

They say: Alongside our own range of craft beers, we also showcase the best of Ireland’s exciting drinks industry, working closely with high quality Irish breweries, distillers and cider makers. We champion local ingredients and modern Irish fare across all sites and our staff are knowledgeable and passionate about Irish produce. Each of our venues has a distinct personality but all are committed to providing a proper Céad Mile Fáilte – a hundred thousand welcomes. In short, you can expect good beergood food and good company at every BRÚ Hospitality site.

Porterhouse Red Irish Ale, 4.2%, 500ml bottle via Bradleys

Red, not surprisingly (they use Crystal Malt), is the colour of this Porterhouse ale and there is a light coffee coloured head, a soft frothy one that hangs about a bit. There’s a tarty streak in the fruity palate and also a decent hint of the malt. I liked this really well-balanced effort a few months back and am just as impressed this time. Excellent from start to finish.

They say: Irish red ales? Yes, we know. Sweet, a bit cloying and, well, no thanks. So, it was brave of us (we say bravely) to put the words “red ale” after our own moniker. Why the hell would we do that? Because this is a real red ale, ….But sweet? No way. Balanced, yes. Fresh, yes. Aromatic, yes. In fact, we say yes, please.

Geeky Bits

Malts: Pale Ale Malt, Crystal Malt, Wheat Malt, Black Malt

Hops: Galena (US, fruity), Nugget US, (bittering) , East Kent Goldings (UK, aromatic)

ABV: 4.2%

 IBUs: 33

Kinnegar Devil’s Backbone Amber Ale 4.9%, 440ml can Ardkeen QFS 

Amber’s the colour for sure, a dark amber at that, lots of fizz in the haze. First sip introduces you to its chocolate/caramel backbone and you realise this is a serious drink, pretty robust too, a full-bodied drink you can’t ignore. Dark fruit flavours on the palate, a very satisfying bitterness as well (hops are a mix of European and American) and then there’s a lip-smacking dry finish to boot. Kind of Beamish light with a Guinness bite.

I was wondering, at first, does this belong with the red ales. Seen this classed as pale ale but a better fit in red. Kinnegar themselves confirm it as “A refreshing contemporary take on a traditional Irish Red. Versatile with food and equally enjoyable on its own.” And more good news: Devil’s Backbone is available all year round. 

Dead Centre “Sham Maths” Amber Ale, 6.2%, 440ml via 

Dead Centre’s well-made well-balanced Amber Ale has, you’ve guessed it, an amber colour (Crystal Malt again!) with a nice soft head. Quite a delicious harmony, with toffee and caramel playing the lead, follows on the palate, and that pleasant balance is further enhanced by a judicious use of bittering hops. By the way, you don’t get too many Ambers (or Reds) at 6.2 abv

Athlone’s Dead Centre is Westmeath’s first and only craft brewery. They say: We’re big fans of Amber Ale at Dead Centre Brewing, so when we decided to make a hoppy American Amber…we wanted to do it right…and that’s exactly what we did! A marriage of Pale Malt, Munich Malt, Chocolate Malt and Crystal Malt combine to form a beautifully full and sweet foundation for this deep copper ale that pours with a smooth, firm head. Simcoe and Centennial are the stars of the show on the hops front. Clocking in at 6.2%, Sham Maths is the perfect step up from our core IPA, Marooned.

Dead Centre Brewing may be found on Custume Quay in Athlone. It offers, outside of Covid restrictions, a combined experience including brewery tour, beer tasting and pizza. Now there’s a combination that’s hard to resist.  

Friday, August 21, 2020

Go with the flow in Athlone this Autumn

Go with the flow in Athlone this Autumn
Heart of Ireland Tours

If you think tourism has looked a bit frantic over the summer, a slow break in Athlone could be just the ticket for your Autumn break away. Inspired by the River Shannon, lazily meandering south from Lough Ree, Athlone is embracing slow tourism with enthusiasm. River cruises, walking tours, gentle cycling routes and relaxing spa treatments all play their part in creating the ultimate laid-back holiday experience in Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands. 
Athlone town straddles the Shannon and a peaceful trip on Ireland’s longest river is the ideal way to orientate yourself while someone else does the navigating. The River Run pleasure cruise is 75 minutes of entertainment and engaging history, best enjoyed with a glass in hand from the onboard bar. Viking Tours take you on a replica Viking vessel either upstream to Lough Ree or down to the remarkable monastic site of Clonmacnoise. Viking Mike himself is a bottomless well of fascinating information and local lore. Sit back and enjoy the panoramic views during these watery adventures both starting from the Castle. 
For 900 years Athlone Castle has guarded a strategic crossing of the mighty River Shannon and still today the magnificent 12-sided stone structure dominates the town centre. Historic Athlone hides many secrets within its ancient streets and Vincent of Athlone Guided Tours knows every single one. The leisurely walking tour is a fascinating insight into the town's history, folklore, industrial heritage and more. The Castle is open to the public and offers an excellent experiential tour. Next door the Luan Gallery showcases national and international artists in an incomparable riverside setting.
Wineport Lodge
Another enthralling tour is the Athlone Whiskey Walking tour led by Deirdre who has forgotten more about the amber nectar than most of us will ever know. 270 years are distilled into an afternoon of stories, yarns and tastings – with locally handcrafted chocolate to complement the tipple. On the wonderfully named Custume Quay lies Athlone’s only brewery. Dead Centre Brewing offer a combined experience including brewery tour, beer tasting and pizza. Now there’s a combination that’s hard to resist.  
Award winning restaurants abound in Athlone and the surrounding area. The choice is very broad, from fine dining to a more casual experience. Check out Thyme with its coveted Michelin Bib Gourmand, The Fatted Calf, The Left Bank Bistro and Savoury Fare or Wineport Lodge in lovely Glasson village, the ‘village of the roses’, where time seems to stand still. 
If a little gentle exercise seems like a good idea, try hiring a bike and cycling the old rail trail, a safe 40km Greenway stretching all the way to Mullingar. Or take out your golf clubs and play a round or two at Athlone Golf Club on Hodson Bay or Glasson Golf Club, designed by Christy O’Connor Junior. That should work up an appetite for your next gastronomic treat. 
John Coffey of Thyme
If you’d like to explore more of Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, take a trip out of town with Heart of Ireland tours offer bespoke, ready to go and customisable tours. 
In Athlone everything is just a stroll away and if you’re staying in the historic town core you can walk everywhere at your leisure. No need for cars or taxis. 
Given its central location, getting to Athlone is straightforward either by car or train, it is pretty much in the middle of the country and very accessible. It has an excellent choice of accommodation to suit all pockets, both in the town and at Glasson and Hodson Bay. The tourist sector in Athlone has been particularly responsive to COVID19 requirements making it a very safe choice for your autumn staycation.

media release

Monday, February 3, 2020

A Valentine’s Ale brewed in the heart of Ireland. 'Sexy Like A' Chocolate Strawberry.

A Valentine’s Ale brewed in the heart of Ireland

Head Brewer, Roger Rotheroe
Athlone brewer Roger Rotheroe has come up with a sweet potion for your Valentine.

Brand new for St. Valentine’s Day 2020 is a chocolate strawberry cream ale from Dead Centre Brewing in Athlone. Revelling in the name ‘Sexy Like A’, the quirky new brew is a one-off, keg-only limited edition from the innovative brewery.

The unusual name 'Sexy Like A', is a reference to a line from a film called 'Role Models' where Sean William Scott uses the phrase 'sexy like a chocolate strawberry'. Taking it a step further, this beer is 'Sexy Like A' Chocolate Strawberry Cream Ale.

“The Valentine’s Ale is the brain-child of our Head Brewer, Roger Rotheroe”, explains Liam Tutty who founded Dead Centre Brewing just a year ago, “It's a traditional American style beer called a cream ale which doesn't actually contain any cream - instead it's a mild, pale, light-bodied ale which is perfect for showcasing other flavours. In this instance we wanted to create a classic chocolate strawberry character.”
Love potion #???

The 4.8% ale was brewed on the Dead Centre pilot kit (which they use for testing and small batch brewing) in a very small batch of 75 litres. They added white chocolate and milk sugars to the boil to give a subtle undertone of chocolate as well as deliver a creamy mouthfeel to the beer. It contains hops such as Citra and Mosaic which were specially selected to pair with the 11kg of fresh strawberries that were also added to the beer.

‘Sexy Like A’ will be served in in the taproom at Dead Centre Brewing, Custume Quay, Athlone for Valentine’s night and will be served with white chocolate dipped strawberries. If you can’t make that, there is one single keg being distributed. That keg is headed to CarryOut Tyrrelstown in Dublin to be used on their Growler System (a takeaway beer filling system).