What's the story?
O Brother Brewing is the brainchild of 3 brothers from Co. Wicklow, Ireland – Barry, Brian, and Paddy O’Neill. In December 2014 we swapped the 9-5 jobs for BEER 24/7, set up our brewery down in Kilcoole, and we haven’t looked back since!
We set up with the clear intention to brew the very best in full flavour beers, largely inspired by the big, hop-forward beers from the US which had always been our go-to, but with a determination to produce great beers across the range of styles. Great beer. No shortcuts!
They say that fortune favours the brave, and when we tracked down a used brewhouse on the SIBA classifieds we discovered that the guy selling it was retired Master Brewer, Iain Masson, who had over 35 years’ experience at the top of the brewing world, having been Head Brewer at Green King prior to retiring. The brewhouse was being sold by Portobello Brewing in London, who were expanding (the kit had a previous life creating lots more epic beer at Moor Beer). Iain was intrigued by our big plans to take over the brewing world, and immediately came on board to help get the brewery operational and get the early recipes fine tuned - a huge factor in helping us hit the ground running. Head Brewer Rich Barrett joined the O Brother team in 2016 after returning home from brewing in California, bringing all his US influences to the beer line up here. His youthful energy and eagerness to push boundaries, and the precision, control and knowledge Iain had built up over a lifetime of brewing, proved to be a brilliant match.
We passionately believe in learning and discovering, and a large part of what we do here at O Brother Brewing is based around collaboration with like-minded people. We are always excited to delve into the worlds of local coffee importers and roasters, the incredible Irish music scene and, of course, the amazing artists that we work with on our #OFFTHEWALL series. Naturally, we also love working with our fellow brewers and we’ve banged out some interesting beers in collaboration. We have a core range of beers that we love to drink on a day-to-day basis, but we always have a few specials, one-offs, or collaborations in the pipeline, and there’s something a bit different about these beers – be it in the can, ON the can, or who we worked with and what new discoveries we made along the road.
Over the past six years we have brewed 50 different beers, ranging from light summer ales, through Saisons, Belgian Rye PAs and Coffee Porters, to Double IPAs and Watermelon Wheats. We have collaborated with some great breweries, artisan coffee roasters, and artists, and we have had an absolute blast doing it! Early on in our brewery life, we used to enter our beers in for competitions … and we promptly won lots of medals and awards. While we were certainly flattered at the time, we really believe that the only praise that matters to us comes - direct and unfiltered - from our customers. And so, we have moved away from beer judging competitions, and now get our feedback via our social media channels and community platforms such as Untappd. You can check us out here - see what others are saying, and join in the conversation!