Newkie Moves

Newcastle Brown Ale will no longer be brewed in namesake city

Manufacture of the famous Geordie brown ale, brewed in its namesake town of Newcastle for
82 years will switch to Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, Scottish & Newcastle said.

It wants to close the Federation Brewery, Dunston, Gateshead, with the loss of 63 jobs by the middle of next year, because of falling beer sales in the UK. The Dunston site is currently running at around 60% capacity.

The famous bottled beer, with its iconic blue star label, first went on sale in 1927 and was brewed next to St James’s Park football ground in Newcastle until 2005.

The ale was also dubbed “dog” by drinkers, as they would make the excuse of going to “walk the dog” when nipping to the pub. Many Geordies will remember with affection the sweet yeasty smell rolling across the city from the plant, which was demolished last year to make way for a science park.

Comments

  1. alesu says

    Could Dunston possibly formulate some new brews that are more like the American pale ales and roll the dice. It seems to me that if the handwriting is on the wall they could do something different or drastic to save what they have. Do they have to be traditional? We make a beer called Cant DOG which could very well carry on the tradition of walking the dog. Come on step up!!!!
    Danny McGovern
    Marshall Wharf Brewing Co.
    Belfast Maine
    USA

  2. beerking1 says

    I think the corporation needs to take a closer look at why their sales are dropping. The beer has not been the same for many years. It appears to have been lightened up quite a bit over the last decade, even more so since closing the Newcastle brewery.
    Today’s Newkie Brown, IMHO, is a mere shade of its former glory. I beleive the alcohol strength has been reduced, and I am certain that the flavor profile is much less than it was.
    It would seem, as a result of the lightening up of the beer, it has become much more fragile, and less able to withstand the rigors of export. This one beer seems to be the single most likely to taste off, whether on draft or in bottles, of any beer I have had lately. Usually, I find a stale, sometimes oxidized, and occasionally sour character in all but the absolute freshest samples, and then only if served from the cleanest of lines.

  3. dick murton says

    I’ve been having a bit of trouble logging on for some reason, so a rather slow response

    Re Newkie – same maltster and malt, same recipe, same yeast, same style FVs, same water treatment, same fermentation and maturation profiles.

    Cheers

  4. beerking1 says

    dick murton wrote: I’ve been having a bit of trouble logging on for some reason, so a rather slow response

    Re Newkie – same maltster and malt, same recipe, same yeast, same style FVs, same water treatment, same fermentation and maturation profiles.

    Cheers

    Over what period of time? I was thinking Newkie has changed from what it was ~15 years ago.

  5. dick murton says

    As far as I know. the recipe and other conditions are still the same, given the inevitable physical difference between breweries and water supplies, changes to malts etc over the years. However, I have not been directly involved with its production so there may be some differences I am not aware of. Trouble is, Tyne brewery closed a good few years ago now, and most of the Tyne mob have retired or otherwise left the business. And I am not aware of a concious decision to change the recipe or other characteristics at any time.