Brewery News

Panto Brings Festive Cheer

As tradition dictates there was a panto dame, a hapless hero and plenty of audience participation.  That perhaps is where most similarities to any other panto you’ve ever seen, end.  But this free-to-watch, low-to-no-budget production, Jack and the Beer Stalk, was hugely energetic, heartwarming and so very uplifting.  Of course, unique.   Brentwood Brewery MD Roland Kannor, who acted as narrator, was solely responsible for the script.  And most likely, all the corny jokes.  As you might expect from Roland, they were plentiful.

The cast of Jack and the Beer Stalk, Brentwood Brewery’s Panto
Photo by Wendy Pike

Enthusiastic Cast

Goldie and Jack ‘treading the boards’. Photo by Wendy Pike

Performed by an enthusiastic cast of brewery staff and friends, other roles included a hard-to-sell cow called Brexit, which the audience front rows soon learned had very leaky udders, a lumberjack (Andy Webb) and a talking bottle of Brentwood Gold, otherwise known as Goldie (Penny Hollington).  The brewery’s own Statler and Waldorf Muppet Show theatre balcony critics, along with a host of extras, completed the cast.

Goldie the talking bottle of Brentwood Gold (aka Penny Hollington) with Jack (Ethan Kannor).
Photo by Wendy Pike

Lumberjack Andy
Photo by Wendy Pike

Hard-to-sell Brexit the cow (with leaky udders)
Photo by Wendy Pike

Audience enjoying the panto.
Photo by Wendy Pike

(Losing) The Plot

The audience was taken on an entertaining journey which sees the fortunes of poor Jack (Head Brewer Ethan Kannor) and his rather eccentric mother (Brewery Manager Dean Beckwith) take a turn for the worse when Jack has one too many in the pub and sells the family cow, Brexit, for a bag of hops.  Miraculously things do eventually turnaround for the family of craft brewers and the story culminates in a happy-ever-after ending for all.

And they all lived happily ever after.
Photo by Wendy Pike


Just when you thought it couldn’t get any quirkier, the whole production was filmed by another cow, an over-sized Friesian in the front row, with the intention of live-streaming it on Facebook.

Oversized Friesan seen in front row eating ice cream and filming whole production. Has anyone seen Shannon?
Photo by Wendy Pike


Action at the panto.
Photo by Wendy Pike

Familiar sing-a-long tunes with words written out for the audience to follow, with help from a large pointy stick, ably wielded by office manager Carol Tomsett, and some hilarious dancing from Jack’s Mum with help from a variety of other cast members, added to the fun.

Jack’s Mum – rather eccentric, bit bossy and a fashion sense best described as quirky. (Brewery Manager Dean)
Photo by Wendy Pike

One festival goer was spotted napping.   But ten week old bulldog puppy Rubble can be excused for falling asleep on his owner’s shoulder.

Too much excitement for Rubble the bulldog puppy. Photo by Wendy Pike

Beer Elves Were Busy

Good Elf, Elf ’n’ Safety and Elf ’n’ Happiness behind the bar served those who bought participation tickets for the panto with a variety of six different Brentwood ales at the appropriate moments throughout the show.

Good Elf, Elf ‘n’ Safety & Elf ‘n’ Happiness busy serving beer to audience members taking part in the Panto.

SNAP Charity

Included in the participation ticket price was a donation to Warley-based charity Special Needs and Parents (SNAP).  The charity also had a stall at the Brewery’s Christmas Beer Festival on Saturday (8th December) which is when the panto took place.  SNAP volunteers were kept busy selling the charity’s Christmas cards and raffle tickets as well as running games and competitions for children of all ages.

Sam Tandy from SNAP with the SNAP stall run with help by volunteers. Photo by Wendy Pike

JW Ice Cream Company

There were mince pie flavoured ice cream samples to try in the short interval, supplied by J W Ice Cream Company, specialist alcoholic ice cream makers based at Chafford Hundred (  The company also had a popular stall at the festival, serving ice cream tasters and selling individual tubs of their delicious products.

JW Ice Cream Company L-R Shans, Jay, Tracy and Mia
Photo by Wendy Pike

Shenfield Operatic Society

Earlier in the day, members of Shenfield Operatic Society came along with their Musical Director Alli Smith to sing Christmas carols to festival goers and to promote their latest show, All Shook Up, which runs at The Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch 30th Jan – 2nd Feb.  Along with lots of popular, traditional carols, the group gave a hearty rendition of The Twelve (Brentwood) Beers of Christmas.  (See the video – in the brewery’s next blog post.)

Members of Shenfield Operatic Society in fine voice at the brewery’s Christmas Beer Festival.
Photo by Wendy Pike

Next Year

If you happened to miss the panto, (and it really was an amusing sight to behold) there are whispers of another possible panto production next year.  Let’s raise a glass to that.

Local CAMRA members with Brewery Liaison Officer Beryl (in pink) with Roland.
Photo by Wendy Pike


Roland and the Brewery Team would like to thank everyone who came along to watch, participate and perform in the panto.  Special thanks go to our local CAMRA group and Brewery Liaison Officer Beryl, Shenfield Operatic Society, SNAP charity, JW Ice Cream Company and Lillypuds, as well as all visitors to the Christmas Beer Festival. 

Panto Audience Participants enjoying a beer and a sing-a-long.
Photo by Wendy Pike

Love Beer, Love Brentwood

Beer Hampers

If you’re stuck for a Christmas gift idea for someone who loves real ale, we’d like to recommend … a Brentwood Beer Hamper.

It contains 4 x bottles of Brentwood Beer, a pint glass, a bar towel, a pen & a bottle-opening keyring, all packaged in a gift hamper.  All for £22.

Beer Hampers can be ordered on our website but are for collection only from the Brewery Shop (we feel the glass is quite likely to break if we try to post them).

Or if you’re passing, you could call in and buy a hamper from the Brewery Shop.  As you know, we’re next door to Calcott Hall Farm Shop.

Love Beer, Love Brentwood


New for Christmas 2018

To help keep you refreshed this Christmas here are four new festive Brentwood Beers to tempt you:

Crimble Crumble 4.5%


Santa’s Sack 4%

Toblerone Stout 4.5%

Jungle All the Way 4.3%

We ho-ho-hope you enjoy a tasty, festive pint of Brentwood Beer this Christmas.

Love Beer, Love Brentwood


Beer Tasting at Library – New Date

Following a highly enjoyable  evening at Harold Wood Library’s Beer Tasting event, which Brentwood Brewery was invited to run as part of Havering Library Festival, Havering Libraries have invited us back.  This time the Beer Tasting event is at Elm Park Library on Thursday 15th November at 7.30pm.

Debbie and Roland Kannor at Harold Wood Library Beer Tasting

Tickets for the Elm Park Library Beer Tasting, costing £10 each, are available from Eventbrite or local libraries.  Here’s the Eventbrite link:

Elm Park Library, 12 Saint Nicholas Avenue, Hornchurch, RM12 4PT.

Attendees Enjoying Some Brentwood Beer at Havering Libraries’ Recent Beer Tasting Event at Harold Wood Library

There’ll be a good range of different Brentwood-brewed beers to taste.  Hope you can join Roland and team for a fun night out.

Love Beer, Love Brentwood

Gold Wins Gold at SIBA East

Brentwood Gold has won the Gold award in its class at SIBA East’s Beer Competition.  It came top in the Bottled British Bitter (up to 4.4%) award and is the East of England region’s champion beer in this category.  The Society of Independent Brewers East (region) Beer Competition was held at Elgoods Brewery in Wisbech earlier this month (September).

The brewery is so delighted that Roland and Bill, with a little help from Ethan, have made a short video in celebration:

It means that Brentwood Gold goes through to the national beer competition at SIBA Beer X which will be held in Liverpool next March where the eight regional Gold winners will battle it out for the national title.

Brentwood Brewing Company MD Roland Kannor said:  “We’re very pleased to win a gold award for one of our most popular beers and one of my personal favourites; Brentwood Gold.  On to the finals in Liverpool!”

Love Beer, Love Brentwood


Festival Went Fine & Dandy

Visitors to our recent Beer & Sausage Festival really seemed to enjoy the occasion.  As well as a varied beer menu of Brentwood and Elephant School beers, all brewed on site in Brentwood, guests were entertained by jazz band Fine and Dandy.

Photo by Ricci Fothergill

Sausages from prestigious local butchers proved to be so popular that extra supplies had to be speedily bought in on the day.  Our suppliers included Bert’s Butchers, Broad Oak Farm, Oliver’s Butchers and Neil S Risdon based next door at Calcott Hall Farm Shop.  Rest assured, there was never any chance that the brewery would run out of beer.

Photo by Ricci Fothergill

Collection pots were strategically perched on both bars to encourage donations for Warley-based charity SNAP (Special Needs and Parents).

Photo by Ricci Fothergill

Brentwood Brewery’s MD Roland Kannor said:  “It was another great, fun event at Brentwood Brewery.  If you were unlucky enough to miss it, maybe you’d like to come along to our next Beer Festival events.

“To celebrate National Curry Week and Yorkshire Pudding Day we’re holding a Beer & Curry in a Yorkshire festival which we’re calling Chicken Bathia Day this Saturday (13th October).  Planning ahead, another one to pencil in your diary is our Christmas Beer Festival on Saturday 8th December.”


Love Beer, Love Brentwood

Getting Arty with Craft Brewers

Among the many bottles and barrels at Brentwood Brewery, members of Ongar Art Society found inspiration for some sketching practise, transforming the brewery into a temporary art studio one Saturday morning recently.

The society’s membership secretary, Nicola Rhodes, said: “We like to go to different places on sketch days. In the past we’ve been to Greensted Church, Epping & Ongar Railway, Hylands Park and very often we go to our members’ gardens. It’s the first time we’ve been to the brewery.

“It’s good because it really gets you looking at different shapes and textures and you’re practising your skills”

The brewery environment certainly provided the group with some different and interesting, if somewhat challenging, subject matter to work with. All the artists agreed that beer barrels were the trickiest of shapes to tackle.

Ongar Art Society Chairman Beverley Hughes said: “New members are always welcome. You don’t have to be an artist to join, you just need to have an interest in art and some enthusiasm. Our members have a wide range of artistic experience and backgrounds.”

Relaxing in The Tap Room

After toiling over their sketchbooks, some members of the group relaxed in the brewery’s onsite Tap Room, sampling some Brentwood-brewed, draught BBC1 which is just 1.5% ABV but just as flavoursome as higher ABV beers.

Brewery MD Roland Kannor said: “We’re proud to serve, help and play an active part in our community. In the dozen years we’ve been trading we always aim to help the local community where we can.

“Whilst it’s always a pleasure to be of assistance, we always end up having fun and enjoying ourselves at the same time.”

We would like to thank all the artists (Nicola, Beverley, Loueen Morrison, Hugh Rayner and Fred Ambrose) who kindly allowed their work to be photographed and shared with our beer fans and readers of the brewery’s monthly newsletter The Beery News. Thanks also go to Hugh Rayner from Blackmore for donating his pencil sketch to the brewery.

The brewery and our Tap Room are open six days a week. See our home page for opening times, more details about the brewery or to sign up for The Beery News (

Ongar Art Society

Ongar Art Society meets regularly on the second Thursday evening of each month (except August) at High Ongar Village Hall. The group is holding its Winter Art Sale at The Budworth Hall in Ongar on Saturday 10th November.

Love Beer, Love Brentwood

The Best July Fest

Celebrating Brentwood Town Twinning

Brewery visitors joined Brentwood Town Twinning Association supporters to enjoy a little taste of German Oktoberfest in July.  Held to celebrate the town’s links with Landkreis Roth in Germany, July Fest, complete with Oom-Pah music, took place at Brentwood Brewery on Saturday (28th).

Special Guests at Brentwood Brewery for July Fest. Photo by Wendy Pike

Photo by Wendy Pike of NewsWoozle:  Special guests at Brentwood Brewery for July Fest (L-R) Cllr Tom McLaren, Fei He, Cllr Jon Cloke, The Mayor of Brentwood Cllr Sheila Murphy, Alex Burghart MP for Brentwood & Ongar, Roland Kannor MD Brentwood Brewing Company and Cllr Andy Wiles

Sausage and a Beer for Town’s MP

Among the guests was Alex Burghart MP for Brentwood and Ongar.  He said:  “We built up some really close friendships with our sister town in Germany over the years and this is a wonderful way of celebrating that relationship and everyone having the chance for a beer and a sausage.”

Mayor of Brentwood Joins the Fun

Once again the brewery was delighted to welcome the Mayor of Brentwood Cllr Sheila Murphy.  Talking about the benefits to Brentwood of town twinning, she said:  “It’s something traditionally we’ve always done very, very well and as people get older we need to bring the younger people in to join us and continue it.

“It’s still very important regardless of where we are in Europe, we are still European, we need keep these ties up and running they bring benefits.  They’re valuable and shouldn’t be lost.”

Cazza Simms and Alan Sparke Enjoying July Fest at Brentwood Brewery

Photo by Wendy Pike of NewsWoozle:  Cazza Simms from Hornchurch and Alan Sparke from Upminster enjoying some German bier at Brentwood Brewery’s July Fest

Along with the dozen cask and draught Brentwood and Elephant School beers on offer there were five different bottled beers on the bar from the Pyraser Landbrauerei in Thalmässing, Bavaria which is in the Landkreis Roth area.

To organise July Fest, Brentwood Brewery worked in partnership with Brentwood/Landkreis Roth Town Twinning Association.

Brentwood Town Twinning Association

Brentwood Town Twinning Association Members with The Mayor of Brentwood and Roland Kannor at Brentwood Brewery for July Fest

Photo by Wendy Pike of NewsWoozle:  Brentwood Mayor Cllr Sheila Murphy with Brentwood Brewing Company MD Roland Kannor and Brentwood Town Twinning members Cllr Jon Cloke and John and Elizabeth Scannell

Cllr Jon Cloke of Brentwood Town Twinning Association said:  “I had to drive out to Germany in June.  We were invited as VIPs to the 950th anniversary of the foundation of the place where we stay in Germany.  While we there we popped into the Pyraser Brewery and picked up six cases of German Bier for July Fest.”

“I’ve been involved with the town twinning association for about ten years.  As well as the business and education partnerships made through the association, on a personal level it’s a very sociable thing to do.  You strike up friendships which is always good whether you’re an EU supporter or not.”

Authentic Pyraser Bier at July Fest at Brentwood Brewery

Bottles of German Bier from Pyraser Landbrauerei (Photo: Wendy Pike)

Last year, a new friendship was struck up between Brentwood Brewery and Pyraser Landbrauerei.

Roland Looks Forward to Visit to Germany

Roland Kannor, MD Brentwood Brewing Company:  “Thanks to Brentwood’s German twin town links, we’ve made friends with the Pyraser Brewery in Landkreis Roth.  Last year they came along to Oktoberfest at Brentwood Brewery, bringing with them some authentic German bier.   When they returned they took with them some Brentwood Beer to share with their colleagues in Germany.

“We plan to visit the Pyraser Brewery sometime soon and would like to organise a coach trip, which will be open to readers of our newsletter the Beery News.”

“Some of our friends at Pyraser are hoping to come over for another visit this year.  They hope to join us at Brentwood Brewery for our next event on Saturday 29th September.  We’re looking forward to welcoming them and enjoying a few beers together.”


Something the town twinning association and the Mayor of Brentwood are hoping for is the blossoming of further future friendships.  “My friend Sarah Parish is Deputy District Commissioner for Brentwood Scouts and she’s in the middle of planning a trip to Landkreis Roth in Summer 2021, hoping to take 50 to 100 young people.

“I think the Scout’s involvement (Brentwood Scouts is one of my charities this year) would be a good way to introduce young people to Town Twinning via the Scouts,” said the Mayor of Brentwood, Cllr Sheila Murphy.

July Festival at Brentwood Brewery

Photo by Ricci Fothergill of RMC Photography Ltd

Love Beer, Love Brentwood

Our Ale Refreshes Festivalgoers & Stars

On the hottest of nights at this year’s three-day Brentwood Festival it was Brentwood Beer that helped to refresh and hydrate thousands of festival-goers as well as Sunday’s headline acts, Toploader and Scouting for Girls.  A bottle of Brentwood Gold was raised to toast the crowds as Scouting for Girls’ frontman Roy Stride paid tribute to the audience and the beer, having supped the ale onstage during the performance.


“It’s always wonderful to get such positive feedback about our beer.  Of course, we’re very proud of what we brew and do.  To get such appreciation is always very pleasing.

“Toploader and Scouting for Girls are fantastic entertainers and we all had such a great time with them at the festival on Sunday.  There was a great atmosphere – a night to remember.

“The bands are a big hit with us and it’s nice to learn that our beer seems to be a hit with them too,” said Roland Kannor, MD of Brentwood Brewing Company.

Private Beer Tasting

At a private Beer Tasting backstage in the Green Room, ahead of their appearance, Roy Stride said:  “I love beer.  Too much!  I love real ales.  I love lager.  I love craft lager as well.  I love supporting small independent breweries especially when it’s something quite community driven. It’s really nice to know.

“I now live in a little village in Sussex and there’s a brewer there and that brewery puts on nights in the brewery.  It’s got like it’s own little pub.  We go and drink there.”

Scouting for Girls

Both bands were invited to their own private Beer Tasting session with Headbrewer,  Ethan Kannor, who admits he was more than a little starstruck.  He said:  “I was a bit nervous as I’m such a big fan.  I’ve seen Scouting for Girls many times and I know all the words to their songs!  But I needn’t have worried as both bands were really relaxed and easy to get along with.  They all seemed to like beer and chatting about it.”

Members of Toploader and Scouting for Girls each sampled small tasters of half a dozen different Brentwood and Elephant School beers, including the brewery’s luxury Champagned beer, Van Kannor.  They were guided through the styles, flavours and characters of the beers by Ethan who also gave a short explanation of brewing processes.


To Chill or Not to Chill

Among the topics of conversation with Joe (Washbourn), Dan (Hipgrave) and Rob (Green) of Toploader was the debate about whether or not to chill ale before drinking it.  On such a hot day, chilling was definitely the preferred option.

Frontman Joe Washbourn said:  “Ale is actually on our rider.  In the summer it’s nice to have it chilled.”

“If you’re going somewhere I’ll always go to the pipes and try different ones.  It’s not about drinking five pints of the strongest beer anymore.  It’s about the flavour and what food you’re eating.”

Lead guitarist Dan said:  “The Gold is what I would choose.  It’s nice and cold.  I don’t know what the etiquette is with the temperature of beer is but I’ll always get a gold ale and stick it in the fridge, have it freezing cold like a lager and I think it tastes nice like that.  Having said that when it’s slightly less cold, you do get a bit more flavour probably.”

Beer & Food Flavour Matching

The Toploader gang was also very knowledgeable about matching food and beer flavours, suggesting the foods they’d choose to go with each of the beers.  As for beer styles, light and golden ones were favoured by Joe and Dan, whilst Rob much preferred lower ABV ales and was interested to learn about the brewery’s BBC1 at 1.5%.

So, how does Toploader normally spend the time before a gig?  Drummer Rob Green said:  “Not normally with somebody turning up with so many bottles of beer!

“We don’t normally arrive this early actually but we’ve just played a couple of nights, last night and the night before, so we were literally a couple of hours up the road so we thought we’d come here and we might watch the World Cup final.  We’ve got a few meet and greets to do and a chance to warm up then we’ll hit the stage, running.”

Scouting for Girls

Scouting for Girls’ Roy (Stride), Pete (Ellard – drums) and Greg (Churchouse – bass guitar) agreed with their friends from Toploader that a Beer Tasting was highly unusual preparation for a gig but their pre-show schedule usually does feature ale somewhere.

Pete:   ‘We do generally have a few beers.’

Roy:    ‘We like a few beers. That’s it really.  Yeah.’

Greg:   ‘Like this.  It’s lovely.  You can just sit about really and listen to other bands.’

Ethan and Scouting for Girls talked about beer and brewing as well as the band’s love of life on the road and a hectic but enjoyable summer festival schedule.  They found they had something in common with Ethan as they swapped experiences and anecdotes about running a full marathon for charity.  Scouting for Girls for Alzheimers’ Society and Ethan for Fragile X Society.  They unanimously agreed it was a tough challenge.


The brewery also confessed that, for one day only, they had cheekily changed the names of some of the regular beers for the occasion with She’s So Love-Aley and Stouting for Girls on the bar.  Also, Hoploader.  To the brewery’s relief the boys from Scouting for Girls were amused and approved of the temporary beer names.

Community Champions

Brentwood Brewery, which won the Society of Independent Brewers’ (SIBA) Brewers in the Community 2018 national award recently, was delighted to once again sponsor the Brentwood Festival.  Held in aid of Cancer Research UK with headline acts including Scouting for Girls, Toploader, Squeeze and Heather Small, the festival attracted thousands of people from across Essex and beyond to enjoy three days of music, food and drink.

Festival Director Jason Jopson said:  “We want to thank everyone who gave so generously to Cancer Research UK, whose pioneering research is aiming to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.”

Festival Co-ordinator Laurie Edmonds added:  “It’s fantastic how the festival really pulls Brentwood together for a fun weekend.

“The crowd was so relaxed.  It was lovely seeing families enjoying the music and activities on offer.”


From Mash Tun to Glass

We are delighted to share with you Brentwood Brewery’s new promotional video which illustrates the brewing process in super-quick time.

In just about 30 seconds the film charts the journey of a pint of Brentwood Beer from Mash Tun to glass.  The video will get its first public outing during the ad breaks at The Brentwood Festival this weekend.

Thanks Harry of Rebelflux Ltd

The Brewery Team would like to thank the talented videographer Harry Hughes of Rebelflux Ltd for his creative genius and diligent work in putting together the video for us. For more details about Rebelflux Ltd see

Thanks Hoppily

We’d also like to thank our friends at Hoppily ( for helping out with this production and starring in the video.  Cheers Hoppily.

(Featured footage supplied by Rebelflux Ltd)

Here’s the video:

Love Beer, Love Brentwood