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Pale Ale No3 to be brewed for cask by Leeds Brewery on behalf of Carlsberg UK: a lot in the Tetley recipe archives that could still be developed

Tetley’s returns to Leeds in brewing collaboration

Tetley’s is being brewed in Leeds again for the first time since the brewery closed in 2011 - but this time it’s a beer from 150 years ago.

No3 Pale Ale has been brewed for cask by Leeds Brewery in a collaboration with brand-owner Carlsberg UK. It is based on the original 1868 recipe that was unearthed from the archives.

Andrew Kenyon, the head brewer at Carlsberg who has been associated with Tetley’s for 20 years, worked with Leeds’ Venkatesh Iyer on the beer, bringing over the brand’s unique double-strain yeast.

“They were both delighted with the way it came out,” said Carlsberg’s vice president marketing Liam Newton, for whom the initiative is the latest chapter in the revival of one of the UK’s iconic ale brands.

“Since I joined the company a couple of years ago we’ve done a lot of work on Carlsberg Export, San Miguel and Brooklyn, and it seemed to me that Tetley’s was a sleeping giant we hadn’t done anything with in recent memory, and I wanted to explore whether we should invest in it.

“Research among ale drinkers found there was a lot of latent affection for the brand. People were also saying it had disappeared, but otherwise it was really positive.”

The result was the recent rebranding, with its contemporary interpretation of the Tetley family’s coat of arms, that’s already having a good response from drinkers, he said.

“And it was while we were working through the history and heritage of the brand we could see that Tetley’s used to make all sorts of beer types.

“We thought we’d try to recreate them and chose No3 Pale Ale to start with because it fits today’s market and the logo already looked contemporary.

“We also knew you can take Tetley’s out of Leeds, but you can’t take Leeds out of Tetley’s. We thought of working on it with a local brewery and Leeds was excited about bringing back a beer from the mid-19th Century.”

The pump clip design is based on the original branding but with the beer type brought to the fore, reflecting the growing awareness of different styles encouraged by the rise of craft beer.

“So far it’s only available in cask but we’ve already had questions asking us whether we could make a packaged version.

“We are trying to bring Tetley’s to the front-of-minds again, to get people to try it again and make a new generation aware of it,” Newton added.

“We’re looking at bringing back other Tetley’s beers. There’s a lot in the archives we could develop, and we could perhaps create completely new recipes, but we’ll how peoples respond to this one first.”

True to the original, Tetley’s No3 uses entirely English hops, including Pilgrim, Brewers Gold and Goldings, giving the beer what Carlsberg calls “a surprisingly modern taste” against the distinctive Tetley’s character that comes from the yeast.

Leeds Brewery founder Sam Moss described the project as “an exciting process”.

"As passionate brewers, when we were approached with the opportunity of attempting to create a beer inspired by a 150-year-old recipe it was a challenge that our team were delighted to accept.

“We’re thrilled not only with the quality and flavour of the beer, but also with how faithful we’ve managed to remain to the original recipe.”

Phil Mellows
8th June 2018

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