Gilbert White opened his brewhouse in 1765 and the museum still hold his original brewing records over a thirty year period. The brewhouse has now been opened as a Nano Brewery providing craft beer and lager to the local community.

The volunteer brewing team with the Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire marking the brewhouse’s opening in 2021

Brewing is a big part of East Hampshire’s culture and something that Gilbert White enjoyed doing in his spare time.

Bror Harry’s strong beer, which was brewed last Easter monday with the hordeum nudum, is now tapped, & incomparably good: it is somewhat deeper-coloured than beer usually is in this country, not from the mat’s being higher dryed, but perhaps from the natural colour of the grain.  The barrel was by no means new, but old &  seasoned.  Wheat, it seems, makes also high-coloured beer.

Gilbert White’s Brewery produces…

Gilbert’s 1765 – A particular characteristic of this ale is a slight but subtle smokiness both in taste and aroma and based on Gilbert White’s original ale recipe. A development of the Gilbert White Bitter previously on sale at Whites. (4.7% abv – 500ml)

Laurence Oates: Oates of course is well known for giving his life in an attempt to help the other members of the ill-fated Antarctic Expedition led by Captain Robert Scott in 1912. In his memory, this is a traditional English India Pale Ale based on a recipe which has its foundation in the 19th Century. Amber coloured, it is a complex balanced beer with tastes of fruits, spice, bread, caramel and raisin. A beer to be sipped slowly and enjoyed with a meal. (4.7% abv – 500ml)

Zig Zag Ale – The house ale favourite; a strong traditional ale at around 6% ABV gets you to the top of the hanger quickly. Having a golden amber colour, this beer has hints of caramel, light fruits and roasted malt. A classic English beer that will be enjoyed either from bottle or on draft from the keg (normally over 6% abv – 500ml)

Bostal – this ale will eventually replace our original Bostal. New Bostal is an ale in the tradition of Sussex Bitter. This is a superbly balanced bitter with prominent hop character. The brew evolved over decades, satisfying the expectations of the people of Sussex and its adjoining counties. Finest Maris Otter malted barley is supplemented with a dash of Crystal malt for balance. The hops are a blend of four different local whole varieties, to give a distinctive traditional hoppy finish. (4.3% abv – 500ml)

Hop Monster – Full on American style IPA, full of Hops and flavour. Note, this is an intentionally cloudy beer!!! (5.3% abv – 500ml)

Gilbert’s Weiss Bier – yep, you got it – Gilbert(s) White Beer which is in the style of India Helles Lager, which for the uninitiated, think of as an intensely hopped lager, with all the flavour of an IPA but minus the heavy sweetness. It’s bold and juicy – with a crisp clean lager finish. The resulting lager is intended to be in the range of 6.3% abv and will not be for the faint hearted.

Sullivan Black: A rich, strong, dark porter

Six Quarters: A golden summer Ale

Gilbert’s Rockwater Lager – the reference for this beer can be found on the commemorative plaque on the outside of the brewhouse on which Gilbert White refers to ‘rockwater’ in the production of his brew. This lager is in an ancient German style rarely found outside the country, which can be either top or bottom fermented and is unfiltered; thereby maintaining a gentle haze. This lager stays true to the tradition using both Premium Pilsner and Munich malts to give a natural amber tint and utilising Mittelfrugh, Saaz and Mt Hood hops. The resulting drink is intentionally hazy and amber tinted; unpretentious, gently citrussy and perfectly refreshing. Ideally suited to lazy, hazy summer afternoon drinking. (4.3% abv – 500ml)

Gilbert’s Wass-Ale: A traditional strong spiced Christmas Ale

Gilbert’s Chocolate Stout – this is a double chocolate oatmeal stout being brewed with Easter in mind. Try to imagine liquid Belgian chocolate, flavoured with a little vanilla and a hint of bitterness which, unlike the usual chocolate egg, packs a bit of a punch at about 7.6% abv ; hence, like Sullivan Black, will be available in smaller 330ml bottles. Look out for the presentation packs with a couple of bottles, a glass, and chocolate eggs and maybe other chocolate treats.

A Selection of beers

To contact the brewery email brewery@gilbertwhiteshouse.org.uk

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