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Hogs Back Brewery launches English craft lager

Surrey-based brewer Hogs Back has launched a unpasteurised English craft lager, which has been developed using local ingredients and after testing in local pubs.

Hogstar lager, which is 4.5% abv, launches in keg and bottle today and promises to deliver “refreshment of old style lagers but with greater depth of flavour and aroma, in keeping with the English ale tradition”.

Hogs Back head brewer, Miles Chesterman, developed the lager using a range of herbs and spices from local food and health shops. After blending a range of flavour combinations the brewer piloted five drinks in local pubs, with Hogstar coming out on top.

Chesterman said: “Hogstar has been brewed using five different hops to draw out our desired combination of bitterness and aroma. It includes Fuggles from our neighbours at Hampton Estate – with lager malts, a hint of crystal malt and our botanical extracts.

“It has been fermented with special yeast and matured for over a month, during which time Hogstar’s flavours deepen dramatically, hence the descriptor ‘deep-brewed’.

“This length of maturation is very unusual among modern commercial lagers, but long storage was the traditional way to round out and balance ‘lager’ beers. Carbonation develops naturally and we do not pasteurise.”

The launch of an unpasteurised English lager follows the success of a trial of unpasteurised tank beer by Pilsner Urquell in London over the summer. That helped drive the brand’s 17% growth in the first six months of this financial year.

Hogs Back’s chairman, Rupert Thompson, added: “Hogstar’s launch is right at the beginning of what will be a major and exciting change in the lager market, with many new lagers challenging the old global brands.

“We have put particular focus on ingredients, in the hope that our target drinkers will enjoy a lager which combines refreshment, complexity and flavour all in one.”

With a RRP of £1.85 per bottle Hogstar, will be available in Majestic Wine Warehouses in the South East; selected stores of Wine Rack, Budgens, Co-op and Booker and will sell on draught in the on trade.

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