This pub review first appeared on the Brentwood Brewery Blog as the brewery’s February Pub of the Month and a version also appeared on the brewery’s Community News page in the Brentwood Gazette at the end of January.

If you enjoy ‘proper’ food and beer, you’ll want to read on:

The Hutton Junction, Shenfield by Wendy Pike (Twitter @newswoozle)

Hutton Junction 2015 (1)

With St Valentine’s and Leap Year Days approaching, thoughts will be turning to romance and love throughout February.

Publicans of The Hutton Junction, Len and Lyn Mitchell, celebrated their Ruby Wedding Anniversary last year. So the brewery feels its Pub of the Month is a particularly fitting choice this month. Albeit rather belatedly, Brentwood Brewery sends Len and Lyn their anniversary congratulations.

Forty years ago Len and Lyn Mitchell formed a dynamic partnership when they married at St Mary’s Church in Little Burstead.

As landlord and landlady of the Hutton Junction at Shenfield , this hard-working duo has spent plenty of time in the workplace together too. They’ve been publicans for 11 years, previously running The Green Man in Herongate and The Layer Fox at Layer de la Haye near Colchester.

Do they have any tips for relationship success?

“There has to be give and take.

“From the moment you get married, you have to start making it work,” said Lyn.

It seems the ‘making it work’ mantra, combined with a firm work ethic, is something they also apply to their business as the couple does not take time out for holidays.

“We are what a traditional pub used to be. All our food – from pies, puddings, desserts and to burgers, soups and sauces are all made in the pub. We have five real ales on which we change routinely.

“Our head chef of six years, David White, is constantly creating and updating our seasonal menu to keep it fresh and interesting,” said Lyn.

At least one Brentwood Beer features in the real ale line up on the bar.

Whether it’s a swift lunchtime visit for homemade soup at £4.35 or celebrating a special occasion with a Peppered Sirloin Steak with Onion Rings, Chips, Peas, Mushrooms and Tomatoes at £17.40, The Hutton Junction is bound to tempt you with its impressively varied menu.

Specials are really something … rather special. Check out the chalkboard. They can include Dover sole at £22.50 or sometimes Venison Sausages (venison is locally sourced from Blackmore). Swordfish or Trout too.

If in a rush (some local workers phone their orders ahead to maximise lunch-break time) sandwiches and jacket potatoes are available.

Traditional favourites like Steak and Kidney or Steak and Ale Pie cost £11.95 with seasonal vegetables and choice of potatoes. What you may not realise is, those seasonal vegetables, like runner beans, courgettes or marrows, were probably organically grown in Len and Lyn’s garden at home.

“One year we had so many cucumbers I was giving them away to customers,” said Lyn.

Hutton Junction 2015 (2)

Reigning supreme in the Brentwood in Bloom competition recently (winner six years running), the gorgeous pub garden, which boasts spectacular grapevines, is planted and tended by Len and Lyn with help from eldest son David. So which of them has the greenest fingers? “Me!” That is according to Lyn, taking the credit. On the other gardening-gloved hand, Len might give a different answer. But that’s give and take.

Hutton Junction 2015 (4)

Beer and Food Match suggestion:

Lumberjack with Lumberjack Sausage Cobbler at The Hutton Junction - Copy

Sausage Cobbler made with Lumberjack Beer & Lumberjack 5.2% ABV

Head chef David White has created a tasty, warming Sausage Cobbler using sausages from Oliver’s Butchers marinated in Brentwood Brewery’s Lumberjack beer. When available, it’s on the specials board, costing £10.75. Whilst The Hutton Junction hopes you’ll visit the pub to enjoy David’s special dish, they are kindly sharing the recipe which is available on the Brewery Blog (www.brentwoodbrewing.co.uk).

The Hutton Junction

Rayleigh Road, Hutton, CM13 1AB

01277 215 240

Pub opens:   noon – 11pm Mon – Thur, noon – 11.30pm Fri & Sat and noon – 10.30pm Sun.

Pub kitchen opens: noon – 9pm Mon – Sat and noon – 7pm Sun.

Oliver’s Butchers, 01277 224 533, 212 Rayleigh Road, Hutton www.oliversbutchers.co.uk

www.brentwoodbrewing.co.uk

words and photographs copyright 2016 Wendy Pike, www.newswoozle.co.uk

 


The Eagle, Kelvedon Hatch

Posted on

This pub review first appeared on Brentwood Brewery’s blog as January Pub of the Month and on the brewery’s Community News page in the Brentwood Gazette at the end of December.

If you’re a fan of  ‘proper’ food and beer, you’ll want to read on:

The Eagle, Kelvedon Hatch                        by Wendy Pike (Twitter:  @newswoozle)

Inside The Eagle - CopyThe kitchen at The Eagle in Kelvedon Hatch must be a busy place indeed as all the tempting pies, puddings and dishes on the menu are homemade on the premises by chefs Luc and Sue.

“The Eagle is a traditional pub with a friendly atmosphere that serves delicious, freshly cooked, traditional food,” says Landlord of 13 years, Stuart Darnley.

On the bar at The Eagle - Copy - CopyOn the bar you will find a selection of draught real ales, including Brentwood Beer.

For wine drinkers, manager Bev Bayes and Stuart personally select all the choices on the wine and Champagne list.  They both completed a Wine and Spirit Education Trust course, so they know their wines inside out.

 

The extensive menu includes most pub favourites like scampi and chips or chicken curry for £9.45 each as well as fresh fish and their popular homemade pies like steak and ale which is sometimes made with Brentwood Best.   Beef and Guinness pudding costs £10.45.  Seasonal specials, like chicken casserole and dumplings £10.45, can be found on the chalkboard but if you fancy a sandwich, a burger or even breakfast, The Eagle offers those too.

Special offer price for two courses (Tuesday to Saturday evenings only) costs £11.95.

On Sundays between noon and 5pm you can dine from the full menu, specials or enjoy traditional roasts with all the trimmings.

In winter’s chill it is hard to contemplate al fresco dining but you may want to write a note to self reminding you to visit the inviting Beer Garden when temperatures start to climb.

The pub has a 60 seat restaurant and can cater for large parties, weddings and wakes.  In addition to a loyal core of regulars, The Eagle is favoured by groups like the Mazda MX5 and Classic Ford Clubs, the local Bereavement Support Group as well as ramblers and walkers.

Quiz night is Monday at 9pm but be warned, it is so well attended you may have to breathe in to squeeze yourself in the pub.

Manager Bev said:  “We cater to individual requirements, offer good customer service and remember that everyone is an individual.”

The Eagle is such a popular place to relax, enjoy good beer and traditional, home-cooked food that booking ahead is strongly advised.

Brentwood Beer & Food Match Suggestions

For a winter warm you up why not pop along to The Eagle to try:

Winter Warmer with Chicken Casserole at The Eagle aerial - Copy (2)

 

Winter Warmer 4.7% ABV with chicken casserole with dumplings

Tasting notes:  A well-balanced, amber-coloured Winter ale with spicy notes creating a full-flavoured beer to enjoy on cold winter days.

or

Brentwood Best 4.2% ABV with home made steak and ale pie

Tasting notes:  Best bitter made with a good dose of Challenger and EKG hops giving a well-rounded flavour and aroma. Light copper-coloured, this beer is a firm favourite.

Pub opening times at The Eagle are Monday to Saturday 11am to 11pm and 11am to 8pm Sunday.

Lunchtime the kitchen opens Monday to Saturday noon – 2.30pm.  In the evenings it closes Monday and opens Tuesday to Saturday 6pm – 9pm.  On Sundays noon to 5pm.

The Eagle, Ongar Road, Kelvedon Hatch, Brentwood, Essex, CM15 0AA

01277 373 472

eaglepublichouse@btconnect.com

www.theeaglepublichouse.co.uk

www.brentwoodbrewing.co.uk

copyright 2015 Wendy Pike, www.newswoozle.co.uk


Graham Cochrane cleaning out mash tun - CopyWill Fisher cleaning out Mash Tun (2) - Copy

 

 

This feature first appeared in Made in Essex newspaper in August 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

The ultimate day out for beer fans, a Brentwood Brewery Experience Day, starts 8am sharp with an important choice.  Beer or science for breakfast?  Or maybe both?

“It’s a jolly, fine day out.  We individually tailor the day to suit each visit.  We can be as serious or otherwise as you like.  If you want to learn about the science behind the process, we’ll happily talk science.  If you want to sample our beer all day long, be our guest,” said MD, Roland Kannor.

The morning schedule begins with a briefing followed by measuring malt for the day’s brew, mashing in and sparging – collecting the all important sugars from the grain.  Being a brewer for the day is physically demanding work, so practical clothing and boots or Wellies are advisable.  Getting mucky is inevitable.

A work friend recommended the Experience Day to engineer Graham Cochrane from Great Baddow.  Graham put the idea on his 40th birthday wish-list.  His sister bought the gift.

“We’re watching the process live, as it happens and getting really involved, adding malt into the mix and helping throughout the process.

“I guess, when you go on a normal brewery tour you get told how these things happen but don’t really understand the time and care and the important points.

“But today we’re doing it real time and learning exactly where the care points and craft is and that’s the real interest,” said Graham.

Once the wort is bubbling in the copper, talk turns to technical aspects of brewing.

“It’s great fun for us too.  We enjoy imparting the knowledge we’ve picked up over the years, teaching people about our passion for beer and brewing,” said Brentwood Brewer Mike Holmes.

As well as learning about Humulus Lupulus (hops), barley and malt, there is much biology and chemistry to delve into.

“I already know a lot about the brewing process so it’s been fun to get involved but really the highlight for me has been the detailed explanation of the chemistry behind it, how everything works.  It’s been fantastic,” said Will Fisher from Colombia, South America.

Originally from Brentwood, Will a teacher, booked a Brewery Experience Day whilst on holiday visiting family and friends in the town.  He’s a true Brentwood beer fan and admits he’s an obsessive home brewer.  His dream –  to open a small craft brewery in Santa Marta on the Caribbean coast.

“I was really interested to see how they do things on a larger scale.  It’s not a lot different to home brewing, just everything’s upscaled.  These guys really know what they’re doing.

“Everything’s done scientifically using really precise calculations.  For me as a home brewer its more of an experiment.  Small scale, you can get away with just throwing things in.”

Midday guests are chauffeured to a local pub for lunch and a pint of Brentwood beer, all included in the package.  Afterwards, chores include digging out the mash tun and sanitising equipment before the day’s tasks are finalised by adding hops to the brew and pitching in yeast.

Home time is 4pm.  Everyone receives the brewery’s booklet ‘Notes on Brewing’ along with an 18-pint Polypin of the beer they brewed, once it’s ready – usually a week later.

The Summer Virgin that Will Fisher brewed will be ready in time for his departure.  The dilemma is he’ll only have a couple of days to drink it before he flies home to Colombia.

If sparing a whole day is difficult, tours held on the first Saturday of the month offer a good glimpse of brewery life.  They run at 11am and 1pm.  For £10 per person enjoy a pint of beer,  free gift and an hour-long tour.  Entertainment is provided by Head Brewer Ethan or Roland.  Discover The Hulk and where it resides or hear jokes and anecdotes, Roland-style.  Like the brewery’s close shave with Warner Brothers regarding a ‘borrowed’ image.  The upshot, it ends well – thanks to the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Chockwork Orange is now the official beer of the book ‘A Clockwork Orange’.

Brewery Experience Days are available Tuesdays and Thursdays for up to four people per day at £99 per person.  For details or bookings contact Brentwood Brewery (next to Calcott Hall Farm Shop):  01277 200 483,

enquiries@brentwoodbrewing.co.uk, www.brentwoodbrewing.co.uk

See original Made in Essex feature online:  See:   http://www.madeinessex.net/article/57


One of the highlights of my year was being asked to catch a quick interview with UB40 ahead of their headline act at The Brentwood Festival 2014. 

The story I subsequently wrote first appeared on Brentwood Brewing Company’s blog:

Just to prove it, here’s a photo of me taking a photo of UB40 at the Phoenix FM Studios.  Thanks to Laurie Edmonds of Local By Social for the snap.

Photo of me taking publicity photo of UB40

This World famous Reggae group may like to sing about Red, Red Wine but it turns out the boys from UB40  are also partial to a pint or two of real ale.

Assistant Brewer Ethan Kannor couldn’t resist presenting the band with some Brentwood Brewing Company refreshment when he met them at The Phoenix FM Studios at The Brentwood Festival.  Ali, Astro and Mickey seemed genuinely pleased at the prospect of trying some bottles of Summer Virgin, the festival’s most requested Brentwood Beer – after the show, of course.

Astro said:  “I like beer. I’m a CAMRA member and have been for the last 5 or  6 years.  I go to as many festivals as humanly possible.  The best one is always Birmingham Beer Festival – 800 real ales, 200 perries and ciders.  It’s a fantastic night out.”

In recognition of Astro’s obvious enthusiasm for real ale he was invited along with the rest of the band to return to Brentwood for a brewery visit and perhaps to brew their own beer.

“You’ll never get rid of us,” said Mickey.

“Can he call it after himself?  How about Astro’s Fantastic?” asked Ali.

Astro added:  “That would be fantastic.”

So the band really does like real ale but enough to change the lyrics to their first number 1 hit of more than thirty years ago?  Would they consider singing Brentwood Beer in place of Red, Red, Wine to the packed crowd at The Brentwood Festival just for the night?  No they said and it’s probably for the best as fans like that iconic tune just the way it is.  But the question did make them chuckle.

UB40′s new album is due out in October (2014) – Silhouette.  You can find UB40 on Twitter:  @WeAreUB40 also @BrentwoodBrewCo and me too:  @newswoozle

UB40 with Brentwood Brewing Company's Head Brewer Ethan Kannor