Introducing Firebrand Brewing Co, a multi-award-winning craft brewery based in the wilds of North Cornwall…
First things first – how, when, and why was Firebrand Brewing Company founded?
Firebrand was set up in 2013 by our Head Brewer Joe Thomson. Joe used to work behind bars while he was studying for his degree in Microbiology and developed a passion for brewing his own beer. We originally brewed traditional English ales, but quickly moved more towards the craft beer scene.
How would you describe Firebrand’s approach to brewing?
Our philosophy is fairly simple; we brew beers that we love to drink!
We use all-natural ingredients and loads of American hops to brew a wide range of beers.
We really like to keep things interesting at Firebrand, so during the lockdown period we started up our Limited Batch Brew series where we release a new beer every week. This has been great for us because we’ve been experimenting with loads of different styles and flavours in smaller batches.
How has the brewery evolved or changed since 2013?
Things have changed a lot since we started! We were one of the first craft breweries in Cornwall and over the past few years the industry has exploded with some incredible breweries doing amazing things.
The brewing scene in Cornwall was a lot smaller and more traditionally focused when we began in 2013. There were a few large breweries around producing great cask beer, but now the scene has grown exponentially with more breweries starting up all the time. The quality of beer in Cornwall is fantastic, with loads of people producing top quality beer in cask, keg and can. It is great to be a part of such a strong and growing industry.
The main thought process behind brewing a more American craft style was essentially; we like the taste, and the ingredients are incredible to work with. We still love a traditional English ale, but brewing craft beer was a new challenge and growing more popular around 2013. We really enjoy using all of the incredible American hops and producing different styles and flavours.
Our brewery is based in a converted milking parlour on a farm in North Cornwall. It is a small, quirky space and when we started out it was the perfect size, but over the years we’ve grown and now is bursting at the seams. We have some big plans moving forward and can’t wait to see where the future takes us.
You’ve recently gone through a rebrand and we love your new look – what inspired the new designs?
Thanks! We wanted to bring a lot more colour into play, so we’ve gone with a little bit of a 70’s theme. Our beers are tropical and flavourful, so we thought the labels should match. We used a great design agency that helped capture everything about us and turn it in to a fancy new logo and label designs.
It’s clear that you are proud of your Cornish roots and that’s captured in the new logo – what can you tell us about it?
We are super proud to be Cornish, so involving that in our logo was a must. We come from very humble roots, so we wanted our new logo to capture that while looking professional and take us to the next level.
The logo features a fire breathing Cornish Chough sat inside our converted milking parlour on the farm.
We’re delighted to be have three of your beers in our Beers of the Month, what can you tell us about them?
West Coast Session IPA was originally brewed as a one off special. It quickly became a fan favourite, so we made it part of our Core Range. It is full of refreshing tropical notes, like lime, mango and papaya, and is super easy to drink.
Helles Beach Cornish Lager is super fresh, crisp, clean and refreshing; this one is perfect for a day out on the beach. We’ve used Cascade hops for a subtle citrus taste and a long lagering in the tank for zestiness.
Graffiti IPA was the first craft beer we ever brewed, and it has become a staple for us. It is packed with a powerful hop punch and features a strong citrus, floral and tropical fruit flavour with a satisfying bitter finish.
What is the go-to beer for the team at the brewery?
We are all very fond of West Coast Session IPA, it’s just super easy to drink with all the flavours you’d ask for.
Do you have anything exciting coming up that you want to share with the Flavourly community? Some super exciting stuff coming up at Firebrand! We are moving into a new industrial unit a few miles away from our current place where we have a load of shiny new kit with a tap room and shop. We are super excited to move in because with a larger brewhouse we can push our boundaries a bit. Maybe even brew our first Triple IPA… but you’ll have to wait and see.
Interview by Claire MacDonald