97 episodes

Hop Forward is a weekly podcast dedicated to the craft beer industry. Ranging from interviews, discussions and stories from a variety of brewers and entrepreneurs within the beer industry, to a variety of topics from founder and host - Nick Law - about starting, scaling and sustaining your own ventures, Hop Forward is here to help you get ahead with your beers, brand and business.

Hop Forward: Getting You Ahead in the Brewing and Beer Business Nick Law

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 28 Ratings

Hop Forward is a weekly podcast dedicated to the craft beer industry. Ranging from interviews, discussions and stories from a variety of brewers and entrepreneurs within the beer industry, to a variety of topics from founder and host - Nick Law - about starting, scaling and sustaining your own ventures, Hop Forward is here to help you get ahead with your beers, brand and business.

    Beers that Belong to the Land [with Duration Brewing]

    Beers that Belong to the Land [with Duration Brewing]

    There are countless stories of brewers, cider and wine makers across the world who have abandoned city life and the smell of smog for the countryside and the aroma of freshly malted barley and green hops.

    One such couple to take such a bold step are Miranda Hudson and Derek Bates, founders of Duration Brewing.

    Leaving a brewing post at Brew by Numbers and architects in London respectively, Bates and Miranda covered a majestic site in West Acre, Norfolk, rooted amongst the ruins of the 12 century priory.

    Duration is nestled in ancient woodlands midway along the Nar Valley Pilgrim Trail. In the ruins of an old priory and by the banks of a chalk river, with seasonal camping and a variety of accommodation close by.

    Having worked tirelessly on planning applications to convert a 16th century barn on a site that holds the same Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas protection as Stonehenge was a massive undertaking in and of itself, let alone the conversion and construction of the site from a derelict ruin to brewhouse containing a near-fully automated German brewhouse and all mod-cons while retaining its charm and character.

    Fortune favours the brave and Bates and Miranda brewed their first beer on 23rd October 2019.

    Beers such as the piney West Coast IPA, Remember When the Pub, and the juicy, soft, tropical APA called Turtles All The Way Down are a shining example of the quality that craft beer geeks and local residents alike could look forward to for many years to come.

    The future was looking bright.

    Then, Covid-19 would plunge the brewery into uncertainty. Times like this really are make or break for people, especially those who have put their heart and their soul and much on the line to accomplish their goals and see their vision fulfilled.

    In this recent conversation with Miranda, you’ll hear in detail about the challenges she and Bates have experienced over the years of putting together Duration. We discuss their story, their ethos, and share some experiences of pre and post covid times, while looking to a promising future and remaining thankful, regardless of the current circumstances.

    Perhaps things may not have transpired for Duration as they’d originally planned, but the best laid plans of mice and men can’t keep Miranda and Bates from doing it anyway…!

    This Week’s Episode is Sponsored by...
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    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 1 hr 11 min
    Brewed with Music [with Signature Brew]

    Brewed with Music [with Signature Brew]

    This week on the Hop Forward Podcast we are talking all about beer and music with Sam McGregor from Signature Brew.

    Like many musicians, founders and cousins Sam and Tom left the touring circuit back in 2011 to set up Signature Brew with the same DIY spirit that most artists and musicians adopt to creating and releasing their records.

    Signature Brew channels the spirit and energy of live music into a brewery that stands for craftsmanship, artistry and passion, and has won us praise from the likes of Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Kerrang!, NME and MTV as well as the wider UK beer press, the Morning Advertiser, The Independent and Channel 4's Sunday Brunch.
    Whereas most breweries collaborate with other breweries, Signature Brew have teamed up with musicians including Mogwai, Alt-J, Slaves, Drs and Dynamite, and - most recently - The Darkness.
    Signature Brew are on a mission to bring great beer to music venues by promoting live music to the accompaniment of great beer.
    Hop Forward Podcast Exclusive...
    This week also includes the first play of Nick Law’s forthcoming single, Leave A Little Room, taken from his forthcoming album The Whispers and the Rumours of War, available Spring 2021.
    This Week’s Episode is Sponsored by...
    From tanks to full brewhouses SSV Limited have got you covered. SSV Limited have established themselves as the go to partner to help you grow your brewery.

    High quality tanks, parts, brewing kit coupled with the knowledge and experience to ensure your project runs smoothly from beginning to completion whether its equipment supply, fully turnkey or anything between.

    Their parts shop stocks well over 1000 essential brewing parts to keep your brewery up and running many available on next day delivery.

    Visit their website on www.ssvlimited.co.uk

    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 54 min
    Unity Brewing Co: Four Years, Four Beers and the Ups and Downs of Owning a Brewery

    Unity Brewing Co: Four Years, Four Beers and the Ups and Downs of Owning a Brewery

    This week we turn our attention to Southampton’s Unity Brewing Co, who recently celebrated their fourth birthday this October past with the release of a special four-pack of collaboration beers.

    Unity is a 20 hectolitre craft brewery known for its modern, hop-forward craft beer including Conflux Pale Ale and Collision IPA.

    In the past 12 months the team have expanded into larger premises, taken delivery of their own in house canning line and have recently launched a side project May Provisions which focuses on continental and traditional style beers, which we taste and discuss on the podcast with founder and head brewer, Jimmy Hatherley.

    We chat about the four different collaboration beers made with Duration, Howling Hops and Verdant to mark the occasion, their side brand May Provisions, Small Breweries’ Relief; we also touch upon various technical brewing topics such as water profiles and hops; and we get on our soapbox about growth and capitalism.

    For those familiar with the show, the conversation is a little more free flowing than perhaps you may be used to listening to this podcast (The Imperial Stout is to blame!). Either way, Jimmy is a cracking guy and smashing out some fantastic beers, and we highly encourage you to seek them out from your local bottle shop or by visiting their online store at unitybrewingco.com

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    THIS WEEK’S EPISODE IS SPONSORED BY…


    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 1 hr 17 min
    Small Breweries' Relief (Part 2) with Timothy Taylor's

    Small Breweries' Relief (Part 2) with Timothy Taylor's

    This week on the Hop Forward Podcast we reconnect with Timothy Taylor’s Chief Executive to discuss their stance and statement on the reforms to Small Breweries’ Relief.

    When calls to boycott breweries and pull of out of pints ensued like a cascade of beer flowing from a DVP with an open dump valve, many of the breweries who form part of the Small Breweries’ Duty Reform Coalition (SBDRC) scrambled to clarify their position on social media with a variety of statements condemning the lowering of the duty threshold.

    Timothy Taylor’s on the other hand didn’t.

    In this episode, we look at why Timothy Taylor’s are holding their ground in order, as they put it, to save cask beer from becoming even more commoditised; we talk about how the brewery sits within the tension of being both a member of SIBA while actively disagreeing with SIBA’s position and lobbying government on the reforms, and Tim explains how the they dealt with the backlash of consumers, craft beer fans and brewers across the board.

    While I may not agree with the brewery’s position on the issue personally, I want to publicly thank Tim for taking part in the podcast and agreeing to come on the show to have a frank conversation and answer some tough questions.

    The purpose of this and last week’s episode was to highlight both perspectives to help facilitate healthy discussion and debate rather than reopen a can of worms. We hope you’ve done that and - if you disagree - please do so in a respectful manner.

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    Northern Ireland’s Licensing Bill is currently going through the Legislative Assembly and brewers are seeking an amendment to allow them to finally sell their own beer in taprooms as well as off-sales.

    All the good bars as well as the most of the breweries in Northern Ireland have grouped together to create The Northern Ireland Brewery and Independent Pub Association, and Hop Forward is joining the fight to raise awareness surrounding the issue.

    Visit craftbeerni.com to find out how you can stand alongside your fellow brewers and support them during this difficult time.

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    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 1 hr 9 min
    Small Brewers' Relief (Part 1) [with Anspach & Hobday]

    Small Brewers' Relief (Part 1) [with Anspach & Hobday]

    In this week’s episode of the Hop Forward Podcast we talk to Jack Hobday, co-founder of London’s Anspach & Hobday about the proposed beer duty reform and how it will affect small independent craft breweries, hindering growth rather than promoting it.

    The first in a two part series looking at SBR, we are on a mission to give an overview of the reforms, presenting arguments from both sides (those in favour and those opposed. While this week’s episode investigates the vantage point from breweries that fall under the 5000HL annual output mark, next week we’ll be talking to Timothy Taylor’s Chief Executive, Tim Dewey, about their stance on SBR and the blog post that cause a stir in the brewing community.

    Nick gives a brief history and overview of the beer duty system here in the United Kingdom and samples the Ordinary Best Bitter from the brewery.

    If you’re in favour reversing the changes to SBR, then make sure you sign the petition which can be found at https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/334066 (link in the show notes) and make your voice heard in Whitehall..

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    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 45 min
    4pm is Officially Beer O'Clock [with Untappd CEO]

    4pm is Officially Beer O'Clock [with Untappd CEO]

    On the Hop Forward Podcast this week we talk with Greg Avola, CEO of the popular beer check-in app, Untappd, which celebrates its 10th birthday this week, discussing everything from big data, review culture and why 4pm is officially Beer O’Clock.

    Twelve years ago, my wife and I started a list that we stuck to our fridge called ‘Beers We Have Known and Loved’.

    The idea was simple: for every beer we’d purchased from The Dram Shop, a small independent retailer of microbrewed beers, fine wines and world whiskies, we’d write down the name of the beer, a comment and rate the beer out of 10.

    Needless to say, that piece of paper has long disappeared but the memory of one particular German beer remains etched on my mind over a decade on.

    Simply called Beer Rauchen, or ‘Smoke Beer’ in English, this black liquid did not have the sublime subtle smoked-sausage-meets-breakfast-ceral taste often associated with the style, but rather - as my scathing review testified - ‘tastes like f*g ash!’ 0/10.

    You could argue that this humble lined-sheet of A4 was a precursor to websites such as RateBeer or apps such as Untappd.

    The idea of keeping a log of things you love - or, in this case, loathe - isn’t new. Beer tickers throughout the years have journal after journal entries containing reviews of the latest guest ale down the local, beers revered at festivals and casual comments from evenings in by the fire on a cold winter’s night with a bottle of something dark and heartwarming.

    In the privacy of, to keep such a record of my personal opinions is neither here nor there. But how does that translate in the digital age where reviews are open to interpretation, public for all to see, and grant direct access and dialog to the producers themselves?

    These are questions Greg Avola, CEO of Untappd, has had to wrestle with for the last ten years.

    Untappd is an app that allows users to keep track of their beers and allows for open conversations surrounding those check-ins, familiar to most brewers and beer fans alike for a variety of reasons.

    I’ve yet to meet a brewer who hasn’t felt the eurphic hit as a shot of dopamine pulses through their veins due to a string of positive reviews, and then - in the next instance - has been hit in the gut by a punchy offhand comment that seems unjustified on every level.

    Whatever your relationship with Untappd, there’s no denying that it does what it does very well and is collecting vast amounts of data regarding worldwide beer trends, which will prove invaluable over the coming months and years.

    And who hasn’t enjoyed reading some of the worst reviews from keyboard warriors and armchair detectives as featured on the Worst Beer Blog.

    In honour of Untappd turning 10, we’ve introduced a little feature we think you’ll enjoy…!

    Stay tuned.

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    Find out more from Hop Forward and our partners…

    Follow is on Social Media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / LinkedIn
    Visit hopforward.beer for more insights and a range of branding, marketing and business development services to help you and your beer business get ahead.
    Join our Facebook Community to connect with other industry professionals from across the globe
    Check out brewing-jobs.com for all the latest jobs and careers across the brewing and beverage industry

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
28 Ratings

28 Ratings

DanLaw1986 ,

Insightful

Have found these podcasts to be an invaluable insight into to the brewery industry. As a home brewer flirting on wanting to go commercial, they have been helpful in giving the confidence needed to proceed and the reality check of the real #brewerslife

Griff479 ,

Great podcast

Randomly stumbled across this podcast. Well presented, interesting and very informative- a great listen for all home brewers 5⭐️

Shellie Ellen ,

I’m a fan

I’m really impressed with this... you learn and lot but it’s really entertaining. I really want a pint with this guy! I’ll keep tuning in :)

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