Old Tree Brewery began between an ancient woodland and an abandoned industrial estate after a new friendship was formed on a train journey. Shared experiences in forestry and community growing projects combined with a passion for ecology, gave root to the idea of Old Tree. As we realised you could drink the sap from Birch trees and make Oak Leaf wine, our resolution was to start a botanical brewery that could fund land regeneration projects!
Doors opened for us as we started to learn about plants and all their uses throughout history – many too bitter to eat raw. Rediscovering the art of brewing became our new obsession. Elderflowers that were blossoming on trees growing in the cracks of pavements could become cider or champagne, Dandelions breaking through concrete to be the first flowers of spring could become beer! Seeing fruiting hedgerow plants like Sea-buckthorn create forests through tarmac and watching Nettles take over fields, we needed no more inspiration!
Elderflower cider became our first drink. It went down well at festivals and friends started ordering it for weddings. Encouraged by this, we started making Somerset Cider, Hedgerow wine and Nettle Beer. We were then invited to become the botanical brewery for Silo – the award winning zero-waste restaurant in Brighton. Since then we have made hundreds of different fermented drinks and we’re constantly developing more!
What we love about drink making is the variety of ingredients available to us, the connection to the outdoors and to the seasons. We want to share this love with you so our knowledge sharing platform is coming soon.
Watch this space and learn with us, brew with us, grow with us –
Called to action by the declining state of our natural world and inspired by the phenomenal variety of life forms we share the planet with… the mission is to open source all ways we can harness the full, (edible and useful) power of biological diversity, both of plants and micro-organisms, to contribute to earth repair, without which there is no hope for the future.