Up Front Brewing represents the realisation of every home brewers dream, I turned my passion into a career.
I’m passionate about beer. I started brewing in my kitchen in Glasgow about 10 years ago, originally making wine from kit, then from the surplus fruit I’d grown on my allotment. After a while I decided to learn to brew my drink of choice, beer. My first few beers were made using malt extract (malt syrup) and tasted great, or at least I thought they did! I quickly switched to using malted barley, and started to brew with earnest, experimenting with malts, hops, and yeasts, as well as by adding fruit, cocoa, coffee, coconut and botanicals at various points throughout the brewing process - I was hooked…
My beers improved greatly with the help of Glasgow’s fledgling home brew community, at this point a very small but tight band of dedicated brewers, many of whom could give even the best commercial brewers a run for their money. We organised events to meet and share beers and brewing techniques, forming a tight network of friendships. Many of the members of this group have gone on to brew commercially, myself included, and our online forum continues to this day to be the single best resource I know of for practical advice and help with brewing great beer.
After winning a homebrew competition with my best friend and long term brew-buddy, Chris Lewis, we brewed our recipe, a 6.9% porter called Zombier, at Fyne Ales in Argyll. To our delight it was a resounding success, and soon after I was offered a job to work there as a brewer, which I jumped at with both hands. The amazing brewers at Fyne Ales taught me how to brew their award winning beers commercially and tutored me on how to improve my own brews, I finally found what I wanted to do with my life, and I threw myself into it, commuting daily from the west end of Glasgow.
In 2014 I started working at the Drygate brewery, and was involved in the install and commissioning of the entire facility, it was a great experience. In late 2017 I stepped down and left Drygate entirely to go full time self employed for Up Front Brewing, it's been a lot of fun so far, and I now have a member of staff doing sales on commission which has taken some of the strain off me. I currently brew mainly out of Alechemy Brewing in Livingston, and have started doing collaborations as far afield as Iceland.