Poole Hill Brewery is a pub/micro brewery on Poole Hill in central Bournemouth. It’s just a ten minute walk from the town centre or a 15 minute walk from the beach. The taproom is open from Wednesday to Sunday, with live music and brewery tours at weekends.
|Venue||Poole Hill Brewery|
|Time||2 pm, 4 pm|
Brewery Tours take place every Friday and Saturday afternoon at 2 pm and 4 pm. This includes a tour of the brewery plus time in the taproom sampling some of the beers produced.
The brewery was established in 2013 in a disused car showroom. Two brands of beer are produced here. The first is Southbourne Ales; which consists of Sunbather (Red Ale), Headlander (Bitter), Grockles (Blonde Ale) and Stroller (Oatmeal Stout), with other beers produced seasonally. The more recent addition is Tingay’s; Digies (American Pale Ale) and Armed with Flowers (Ale with a Floral infusion). Poole Hill was voted Dorset’s best brewer in 2018.
The brewery is only small – just two rooms, so it’s not a long ‘tour’, but the guide was interesting and informative and talked about the establishment of the brewery, as well as the history of brewing in general. For example; we learned how the ‘invention’ of Stout came about when a brewer accidentally over-roasted his barley. There were also samples of some of the brewing ingredients to taste, which helped to help understand the brewing process and the difference between various ales.
After the tour, the group was taken to an area of the bar (the taproom) where samples were produced for us to try in a ‘Tutored Tasting’. Basically, the tour guide remained with us, explaining the characteristics of the beer we were sampling and joining in with a sample or two himself!
We were given four different beers to sample, with theoretically half a pint each, although it was served in pitchers and the portions were generous, so it ended up being somewhat more.
Tour group numbers are limited to 16 and our group consisted of myself, a friend and 14 men on a stag party. We tried the Grockles (Blonde Ale) – my favourite – and Headlander (Bitter). There should have been a third sample, however, we were given the choice of Stroller (Stout) or Digies (American Pale Ale), and when the vote was split, they ended up providing pitchers of both. With the stag party apparently on a tight schedule, this left just myself and my friend to polish off the remains of the pitchers.
It was a fun an informative afternoon. I learned a lot about beer and also drank a lot of beer. I was was certainly glad to have travelled to the brewery by bus (there is a bus stop right outside). A tour of Poole Hill Brewery is to be thoroughly recommended. Cheers!