If nothing else, the accent gives it away. Adam Robbings, the co-founder and brewmaster at Reuben’s Brews in Seattle, is a native of England who relocated to Seattle in 2004. If you believe in such things, I suppose you’d say that making great beer is encoded in his DNA.
Think about it for a second. Imagine you start a business in Seattle, as Adam did, you build a brand, you brew fantastic beers, you win awards, but your family and friends back home never get to drink your beer. Imagine telling them, “Really, it’s good: people like my beer.”
No doubt, for Adam there is a certain satisfaction in the recent announcement that his beers will be available in the UK. A partnership with West Berkshire Brewery will see three of Reuben’s Brews beers distributed in the UK. Instead of shipping beer halfway around the globe, West Berkshire Brewery will brew the beer and distribute it via its channels.
“I’m very excited that my parents, family, and friends can now try our beer as fresh as possible at their homes in the UK and taste the flavor of true West Coast-style beers that we brew in the great tradition of our region,” says Adam.
A sort of homecoming
Speaking of his parents, it is no accident that Adam partnered with West Berkshire Brewery. “The brewery is close to my parents’ house and I’ve been there many times,” he says. “They make great beer and they’re set up to do contract brewing like this.”
Adam explains that the recipes have been adjusted to meet the local expectations, while also maintaining the Seattle-born character. The Brits are accustomed to beers that are a bit lower in ABV, so the recipes take that into account. Though the ABV is about a point lower on the Crikey IPA, for instance, the basic character of the beer remains the same.
If you want an example of what the UK-versions will taste like, try the Pub Crikey, which was created as the prototype for what West Birkshire will brew across the pond. It is currently on tap at the Reuben’s Brews taproom in Ballard.
“Adam and his team share the same passion and respect for beer that we do,” said Tom Lucas, the Managing Director for West Berkshire Brewery. “We both focus on the drinker, creating full flavoured brews of all styles with balance and drinkability at the heart.”
West Berkshire is offering three of Reuben’s beers. Two are IPAs: a UK edition of Crikey IPA and a UK version of Hazealicious IPA. They’ll also brew Pacific Pils, a new pilsner that honors the ingredients and terroir of the Pacific Northwest.
The two partner breweries are also developing an exchange program for their brewers and teams to share ideas, experiment with new brews, and have a bit of fun along the way.
Not just the UK, but Colorado, too
As if all that isn’t exciting enough, Reuben’s Brews also announced that it is expanding its domestic distribution to include Colorado.
“Colorado has a deep, rich brewing tradition and millions of knowledgeable and passionate craft beer lovers, similar to Washington,” said Adam. “We visit at least once a year for the Great American Beer Festival in Denver and have a love for the place and the people. Because of our success at the GABF over the years, and our many friends around the state, we’re proud to now have a chance to share our breadth of balanced beers with the great people of Colorado.”
Starting this week, Reuben’s core beers Crikey IPA, Hazealicious, and Pilsner will be widely available in specialty beer shops and liquor stores around the state of Colorado through a new partnership with Colorado Craft Distributing. For more information about where to find Reuben’s Brews in Colorado, visit reubensbrews.com.