A new brewing venture in Reigate has launched its first beer – with bread as the key ingredient.
Crumbs Brewing is using leftover loaves from Chalk Hills Bakery to make its Amber Lager.
Founded by husband and wife team Morgan and Elaine Arnell, Crumbs is aiming to create a great tasting beer and also help in the fight against food waste.
“We love Chalk Hills and it struck us what a frustrating life a baker must have. You put all that skill and effort into making a great product but so much of it gets left unsold or unused at the end of the day.
After a bit of googling we discovered there is a long tradition of partnership between the worlds of baking and brewing stretching back to Egyptian times.”
“It sounded like a great idea and when Chris and Rosie at Chalk Hills were as enthusiastic as us we thought ‘let’s go for it’.”
Crumbs describe Amber Lager as having a Vienna style, being a little darker and richer than a normal lager, with a malty aftertaste.
It’s being distributed via Reigate businesses such as The Vineking, and new craft beer shop Four Hops, as well as via the Crumbs website.
The team will also be visiting local festivals, and are sponsoring New Music Fest at Reigate Rugby Club on 17 and 18 June. One of the Crumbs team, Adria Tarrida, is also performing there as a member of band Judy Punch.
Morgan grew up on the Isle of Wight, and the first batch has been made in partnership with a brewer there, Goddards Brewery, who were willing to try the bread idea.
In the longer term, Crumbs is looking to expand the range using different kinds of bread, as Morgan explained:
“We’re keen that this is just the beginning. Not only do we want to brew using different varieties of bread – Dark Rye Stout or a Sourdough IPA anyone? – we also want to apply the concept of repurposing artisan products to other ingredients.
Only the other day I learnt that most coffee grounds end up in landfill, I guess I’d always assumed they got composted. Sounds perfect for a coffee porter doesn’t it?
We could one day also go beyond beer – a gin made from wonky veg, a white bloomer vodka? Maybe it’s wise to not run before we can walk.”