Q: Why the name White Rock Brewery Co?
ROSS: The name originated from my treacherous move to Guernsey from the UK back in 2011, everyone who has travelled by Ferry to the channel islands will know how rough it can be, it was so bad they had to shut the bar and duty free as bottles were smashing. When we finally arrived into Guernsey the captain said, “Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Guernsey, we are now arriving at the White Rock”. So it was the first place I arrived in Guernsey. The lines above our logo are actually waves to represent the journey.
Q: How long have you/the brewery been making beer for?
Ross: The brewery started in 2013, so we have been brewing commercially for 5 years, I on the other hand have been brewing for 12, I found my love for brewing at university, back then my brewing was a little more basic and the consistency somewhat questionable, thankfully I have come a long way since those early days.
Ryan: I, believe it or not, can just about make a decent cup of tea, so I leave all of the brewing and distilling to the team.
Q: What got you into brewing?
Ross: brewing my own beer was cheaper than buying it at university is the honest reason, that said, my family have always been into brewing and the alcohol industry, our grandad was a long serving employee of Whitbreads so you could say it is in our blood.
Ryan: For me I got into the business and not so much the brewing. Our granddad was a lifelong Whitbreads man who regularly told us stories from his youth where he run both pubs and off licenses across London. He would always tell us tales of the characters that he met some good and some bad but all would put a smile on his face when he recalled his past. When I had the opportunity to get involved with the brewery I jumped at it. To be involved in a business that I felt was in our blood, and to work closely with my cousin was something I had to do, and I know our Grandad is looking down on us now…. Enjoying a cold pint no doubt.
Q: When you’re not brewing what are your hobbies?
Ross: I love playing sport, I have been playing volleyball for a number of years and more recently started playing golf, I find it a great way to clear the mind and de-stress.
Ryan: I am ex military and still really enjoy pushing myself physically so I train Muay Thai 3-4 times a week, I also play guitar and enjoy beating Ross at Golf.
Q: What’s your favourite style of beer?
Ross: My go to beer would be an IPA, I am a big fan of hops. I am very adventurous when it comes to beer and will pretty much try anything, I do love a good sour and have become very fond of black beers, be it a black IPA or stout/porter, one of the reasons for creating Project Black, although this is not the beer that we intended it to be, we intended it to be a strong, big bodied porter however when we took the OG & FG we noticed we were a long way away from what we hoped, when we looked back at the process we noticed that one of our copper elements had not been switched on or not functioning which meant we did not boil as aggressively and not as much water was evaporated as planned, what was produced was not a porter, nor a mild, it was not hoppy enough to be an IPA so we just called it a black beer, and it has sold amazingly well, so well it is now a regular feature on the pumps.
Ryan: I personally am a big fan of German beers. I love to Ski in Bavaria with my friends so for me the beers always remind me of great times with my mates so I tend to gravitate towards them whenever I see them. I always like to try different IPA’s as well just to put them up against our own Lost Tourist.
Q: If you could only have one of your brews for the rest of your life, what would it be and why? (I know it’s like picking a favourite child!)
Ross: Lost Tourist, for me it has the perfect balance between sweet and bitterness, the cara malts provide a beautiful backbone for the new world hops we use.
Ryan: Lost Tourist for sure, it has become my go to after a long day at work and I am yet to find another IPA when I am out and about that I can say I prefer. For me it is the perfect blend of hoppiness but still refreshing without being over powering.
Q: You are in a supermarket, in the Beer aisle of course, what would you buy? (your wonderful beer isn’t on sale unfortunately!)
Ross: Something I have never seen before, I like the unknown and therefore like not knowing what the beer is going to be like, sometimes I am pleasantly surprised and other times not so much, but that is the gamble.
Ryan: Probably Punk IPA by Brewdog, I don’t mind it as a drink and I really admire the way they disrupted the industry.
Q: What new flavour combination would you love to try/what new hops would you like to work with?
A: Ross: I am a huge fan of some of the developmental hops being created at the moment, I would love to work on some single hop beers, as for flavours, I would love to work on a barrel ages beer, being so close to France I would love to get my hands on some calvados barrels.
Ryan: We are actually playing around with CBD oils and Hemp in the beer at the moment, I am really excited to see the outcome of this.
Q: What brewery you would like to collaborate with and why?
A: Ross: Leigh on Sea Brewery,
- Because it is so close to my hometown of Rayleigh
- Because they have such a passion for beer, this really shows in the quality of their products.
Ryan: There is a brewery in Scotland called Veterans Brewing. It is run by ex soldiers whose motto is “Owned by veterans, run by veterans and supporting veterans” I know they support certain military charities so I would love to do something with them as it is something that is obviously close to my own heart.
Q: Tell me something interesting about White Rock Brewery Co
A: No beer stories, but our gin Unit Six Gin which we launched in March this year within its first six months won an International Wine Spirits Competition Silver, was selected to participate in the Daily Telegraph Gin Experience 2018 and got both a Special Mention and Recommended at the 2018 Gin Guide Awards that mean it was within points of the winning gins so for us this was amazing and just paid testament to the team working hard at our new brewery in Guernsey. This year we moved into a premise twice the size of our old one allowing us to grow as a business, brew more amazing beers and distil our award winning gin continuously. The new brewery is amazing, we do tours and have a tap room and is officially White Rock HQ …. So watch this space we have some exciting new creations just around the corner.
For more about White Rock Brewery Co see the following;
Thanks for taking part! Absoluely love the story behind you name and looking forward to seeing new releases from your new brewery. If I’m ever in Guernsey I’ll definitely be coming on a tour of your new base!