For Tom’s Tap and Brewhouse (a small independent brewery, bar and venue on Thomas Street in Crewe), the opportunity to brew a beer to commemorate the first locomotive built by Crewe Works was an intriguing project - the idea of creating a beer that might have been brewed around the 1840s was too good to miss!
The idea to commemorate Crewe Works with an authentic brew came out of early planning meetings for this year’s Heritage Open Days event. When the Grand Junction Railway moved its engineering works to Crewe in March 1843, the first locomotive to leave the sheds was Tamerlane, just seven months later.
Sean Ayling from Tom’s Tap and Brewhouse, previously Head Brewer at Pig and Porter in Kent, settled on an English IPA brewed with the heritage malt, Chevallier for his Tamerlane ale.
Traditional brewing practices were used and it required a three hour mash and two hour boil to produce the beer, something that was very common at the time.
The Tamerlane ale was brewed back in May (alongside members of South Cheshire Campaign for Real Ale - CAMRA) specifically for the Crewe Rail Ale Festival at the Heritage Centre this weekend to give the beer time to “come to itself” and give an authentic idea of what the beer might have tasted like.
South Cheshire CAMRA is back at the Heritage Centre for their 10th annual Crewe Rail Ale Festival featuring over 50 Cask Ales, Real Ciders & Perrys! Find out more about the event:
Tom’s Tap and Brewhouse was established in 2018 by Sean and Jacqui Ayling. Sean has established a reputation for brewing quality beer. Jacqui has also been active in promoting craft cider in the area and received an award for ‘Services to Cider’ from South Cheshire CAMRA in 2022.
Photo shows Tom's Tap and Brewhouse's Head Brewer Sean Ayling and Assistant Brewer, Chad.
(Image - Alexander Greensmith / Crewe Nub News)