We’ve teamed up with award winning beer writer and SommALEier Melissa Cole, and a group of Nicholson’s Cask Masters to brew a Christmas beer exclusively available in Nicholson’s pubs over the festive period.
I Sea Santa (4.9% ABV) combines six malts and Fuggles and Mosaic hops with a blend of spices, treacle and a hint of laver bread from the South Wales Coast. A beer dark chestnut in colour, it has aromas of mulled spice, orange and mango and a sweetness from the treacle which complements the warmth of the cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and chilli.
I Sea Santa was brewed as part of Nicholson’s Winter Ales range. Two other collaboration beers, with Adnams and beer writer Ben McFarland and Harviestoun Brewery and beer blogger Richard Taylor, also form part of this celebration.
A group of Nicholson’s Cask Masters, nominated cask champions from each Nicholson’s pub, joined Melissa at the Brains Brewery back in October. After a tutored tasting of the vast ingredients available, the recipe for I Sea Santa was agreed upon before being brewed by Brains Head Brewer, Bill Dobson.
Bill Dobson said, ‘Devising the recipe for I Sea Santa with the Nicholson’s Cask Masters was great fun. The knowledge and passion for beer that came from the group was inspiring and I look forward to seeing I Sea Santa on the bar over Christmas."
Melissa Cole said, "Working with Bill Dobson, the Head Brewer at Brains was great fun. He likes to indulge the slightly crazy aspect of my approach to brewing. I’m particularly excited that we’ve used local laver bread, which is seaweed as that particular ingredient is packed with umami and should make the beer deliciously drinkable."
Jamie McCarthy, Senior Cask Master of the Year from the Pump House, Brighton said "This really is what I believe makes us stand out in our market, we take ale so seriously and this is gives us pride, ownership and impacts the knowledge shared in the teams. It’s our chance to tell the guest we had a hand in brewing the beer they’re drinking!"
I Sea Santa will be available in 77 Nicholson’s pubs nationwide from Thursday November 20th until Christmas.
For further information, including a list of Nicholson’s pubs visit www.nicholsonspubs.com.