The Cask Project

Ossett launches cask ale range for 25th anniversary

By Gary Lloyd

- Last updated on GMT

Ossett Brewery to launch new range to celebrate 25th anniversary

Related tags Cask ale Pubco + head office Ossett Brewery Multi-site pub operators

West Yorkshire brewer and pub operator Ossett Brewery is toasting 25 years by launching a series of cask ales as sales continue to grow despite market challenges.

The brewer of renowned brands such as Yorkshire Blonde, White Rat, Silver King and Excelsius, is releasing a four-strong range called the Silver Series.

First up is a premium golden ale called Dazzler (4.5% ABV). This was first brewed in the summer of 1998 and was one of the very first Ossett beers. A quarter of a century later, this updated version of an old favourite has lots more hops. Golden Promise malt “creates a premium golden pale ale with bready and biscuity flavours” while WGV (Whitbread Golding Variety) hops, grown in Kent, are added at three stages of the brewing process to produce “the floral and herbal aromas characteristic of the best English ales”. 

The second beer to be rolled out will be ​Easy Does It (3.4% ABV), which Ossett describes as an easy-drinking session summer bitter that is clear pale straw in colour and full bodied with hints of peach, pineapple and passion fruit on the aroma. It is also said to have a balanced dry, citrus bitterness in taste delivered from new British Harlequin and American Citra hops.

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Souped-up ‘mutation’

The third brew, which will come out in autumn is Alter Ego (5.5% ABV) that the brewer said is exploring the NEIPA (New England India Pale Ale) style and claimed it is a ‘souped-up’ dry-hopped mutation of Ossett’s White Rat (4% ABV). It is said to be hazy, straw-coloured, with the aroma of orange, peach and grapefruit from the Cascade, Amarillo and Columbus American hops that deliver a bitter-sweet balance.

The fourth beer will be a vanilla stout to conclude the celebrations. Jet (4.2% ABV) is an Irish-style stout with vanilla, chocolate and coffee notes on the aroma and a dry and bitter finish from roasted malts, which Ossett said is joined with the French Savinjski Goldings hops and US Chinook.

Distinctive pump clips for the series display red and silver lettering on a black background.

Ossett Brewery began life in 1998 on a five-barrel-brew-length kit behind the Brewer’s Pride pub in Ossett and within three years its brewing capacity was 40 barrels a week.

The company now produces 440 brewers’ barrels a week serving a pub estate of 35 outlets, free-trade customers and national customers across the UK. 

Each month it produces collaboration brews, featuring ales such as Rose Petal IPA, brewed jointly with Adnams using the new UK Mystic hop. Alongside is a Single Hop series of pale ales exploring hops from the UK, USA, New Zealand, France and Germany.

Particularly challenging

Ossett owner Jamie Lawson said: “These post-pandemic times have been particularly challenging for the brewing and pub industry. However, the past two years have seen us enjoy steady growth and we are now delighted to be celebrating our milestone 25th year with our Silver Series.

“We believe in the future of cask ale and are determined to build on our deep roots to sustain Ossett for the future through broadening the appeal of cask with inventive and exciting brands – as seen with our Silver Series, Synergy Series, Collaboration Ales and our Single Hopped programme as well as the all-time favourites that sit within our core range.”

The company was originally founded as a brewpub in 1998 by Bob Lawson former career brewer at Joshua Tetley in Leeds. Son Jamie founded an independent pub group, Izakaya Pub Co alongside the brewery in 2003, which later merged into the Ossett brewing group. 

Jamie has led the brewery since Bob became chairman in 2005 with Paul Spencer taking over as head brewer at the same time. Paul is still in charge of Ossett’s beer line up after 22 years with the company. 

To read an interview Jamie Lawson, who also founded craft beer brewery Salt in 2018, gave to The Morning Advertiser​, click here​.

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