Who are Heavy Water Brewing…
Heavy Water Brewing Company were born out of a beer festival – where all good ideas come from! Steve and Ade met at the Oxford Beer Festival back in 2018, both having a passion for sharing beer and being enthusiastic home brewers. Following the beer festival, conversations continued for the next year or so before they started brewing.
Brewing started in January 2020, with them both thinking it was going to take a while to get the brewery off the ground (no pun intended as Ade is an airline pilot), but enter COVID-19. This is actually a COVID-19 success story, as had Ade not had the downtime; being an airline pilot by day, the brewery might not have come to fruition as quickly as it did.
To get things moving, Steve and Ade started renting brewery space from Church Hanbrewery in West Oxfordshire, using their kit when not brewing. This allowed them to brew around 200 litres of beer at once. Since then, capacities at the brewery have grown, as well as having the ability to can beer, which is great.
The future dream would be for Steve and Ade to have their own brewpub or taproom so watch this space for future developments.
I was fortunate enough to have 9 different cans gifted by Steve. What impressed me is the variety of beer styles available. I really love it when local breweries go for producing more interesting beers, than the usual IPA and pale ales. To receive not only a cracking NEIPA, but a margarita sour, dunkel bock, bitter orange IPA and a seasonal pumpkin ale, was a real treat.
The can designs and names of the beers are also something that’s also quite unique. These come from both Steve and Ade’s background and passion in the field of engineering and physics. It’s great to see their passions for not only brewing coming through in the products.
Price wise, you are looking at £3.75 – £5.50 for a 440ml can, depending on your beer of choice. They also offer a variety of can cubes and pre-chosen beer selections.
What stood out
Having such a variety to choose from, I wanted to highlight a few that really worked for me.
First up, I thought the margarita sour was fab – Los Alamos – Margarita Sour, 5.5%. I don’t like margaritas in general and tend to shy away from some more potent sours, but this was wonderfully clean and refreshing. Steve told me that either putting a salt rim on the glass or trying it like you would a tequila shot, with a lick of salt first, was something to experience. Completely agree, having that little hit of salt really brought the beer to life. On pouring, it’s light amber with a slight haze, and gave off a zesty aroma. Drinking with the salt almost takes some tartness away that you might associate with a typical sour. On a hot day this is a great drink, but equity good at the start of December. A must try!
Oxford Marmalade – Bitter Orange IPA, 5.5%. This was deep amber in colour, with a fruity, citrus aroma, coupled with an orange finish. I wasn’t sure what to expect with this, as some beers based on fruit, can have a tendency to be very rich and acid like. I am pleased to say this was not the case here, and was very subtle. Initially, it provides a lovely hoppyness that gives way to the subtle orange peel flavour that lingers on finishing. It’s not too ‘orange’ or too bitter, it strikes a lovely balance.
Standing Wave – West Coast IPA, 5%. A very easy drinking one! Light copper colour with familiar pine, citrus and tropical aromas for this style of beer. This has big hop flavours that gives way to a pine, bitter finish, with a nice amount of carbonation. A refreshing beer, that you can easily sink a couple of.
If you are into your darker beers, Dark Material – Chocolate Empirical Stout, 8% could be for you. As you would expect, this is jet back in colour with a light brown head. You get a roasty, dark coca aroma, with a slight sweetness. Being 8%, it’s a bit of a heavy hitter with bold dark chocolate bitterness, that fades into a lingering, warming alcohol finish with a slight smokey note.
Some great seasonal beers are also available, and was lucky enough to try their rich, sweet Schrodinger – Weissbier, 4.8% as well as Pumpkin π – Seasonal Spiced Ale, 4,5% which has spicy subtle notes of cinnamon and clove, a lovely beer for a winters evening.
How to get hold of their beer
Heavy Water Brewing sell their beer through local business including, Eynsham Cellars, Teardrop, Big Scary Monsters Social Club, farmers markets and direct through their website.
If you are looking for some great stocking fillers or local beers for Christmas, check them out at Blenheim Christmas Market until the 19th of December and Summertown Market from the 19th – 22nd. You can also order online and get free local delivery.
I am excited to see future brews from Heavy Water if their current range is anything to go by. I also had a taste of their Grapefruit Pale Ale – Forbidden State, over the summer; another one that would go on my recommend list. They are definitely worth a visit if you are heading to one of the markets or put an online order to give them a try!
Heavy Water Brewing Company
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