Up Close: Maldon's Mighty Oak Brewing Company celebrates over 25 years of award-winning beer

By Chloe Brewster

10th Jun 2024 | Local Features

The Mighty Oak Brewery owner John Boyce, alongside his popular high-street taproom [left]. One of the brewery's specials, Maldon Gold [right].
The Mighty Oak Brewery owner John Boyce, alongside his popular high-street taproom [left]. One of the brewery's specials, Maldon Gold [right].

The Mighty Oak Brewing Company has seen over 25 years of accolades since opening in 1996.

The business produces over 800,000 pints of beer per year and supplies to over 450 pubs, bars and shops around East Anglia and the South East - with fans across the UK eager to taste their award-winning beers. 

The Mighty Oak brewing company has been brewing in Essex since 1996, from small beginnings in Hutton and then relocating to its Spital Road site in 2001 to allow for expansion.

Now the only brewery in Maldon town, Mighty Oak also owns a popular taproom in Maldon High Street, making the brewery and its team "part and parcel" of the town's culture scene.

The Success Story

Some of the best-selling beers in the brewery's permanent range.

One of the business's most decorated beer's includes Oscar Wilde, a dark mild, which won CAMRA's "Supreme Champion Beer of Britain" in 2011 and is regularly in the top three of CAMRA's "Champion Mild of East Anglia'', most recently awarded Gold in 2023.

Gill Crawford, Director at Mighty Oak Brewing Company, told Nub News of the business's excitement at winning such a title: "Oscar Wilde Mild is our flagship ale and winning Supreme Champion Beer of Britain gave our brewery an almighty boost.

"Because of that win we were able to expand our brewery and drive sales into new areas. Our beer is now known all around the UK, which is terrific!"

Mighty Oak's much-loved Maldon Gold, a classic golden ale first crafted in 2001, has also won CAMRA awards, including "Champion Golden Ale of Britain" and "Champion Golden Ale of East Anglia". 

The Mighty Oak Tap Room beer wall and personalised bar towel. (Photo: @fueledbybeer on Wordpress)

The business offers nine permanent brews, many of which have won CAMRA accolades over the years.

"It is great to see when beer enthusiasts come into our little shop at the brewery." Gill added.

"Some come in regularly, others drive a long way just to visit us at the brewery.

"It can be a special day for the people to visit us. They can pick up their favourite beer, chat with a brewer, and then head off to enjoy all that Maldon has to offer.

Owner, John Boyce, pouring a pint from the beer wall.

"For us, because we are here every day, we kind of forget how exciting a local brewery like ours can be - our visitors remind us about how special a micro-brewery really is and we enjoy welcoming them in and we're always up for a chat about beer."

Off the back of the 'Oscar Wilde' success, the brewery now offers a line of spirits including the Seax Spiced Rum and the Wilde Samphire Gin, which are distilled from the wort of the award-winning beer. These are both small batch spirits of the highest quality.

"The proof is in the tasting!" Gill tells us.

The brewery also produces limited-edition 'Special' beers weekly, with June specials including 'Stetson', a 4.3% amber traditional ale, 'Tiger Tiger', a 4% IPA with aromatic hops, and 'Here Comes Summer' a 3.9% pale golden refreshing summer special.

The Taproom 

As well as the little shop at the brewery, Mighty Oak also has a lively hub on the High Street.

The taproom is popular on Maldon High Street, with cool interior and a calm atmosphere.

Mighty Oak Taproom, Maldon High Street, is a popular micro-pub at the top end of the high street. 

The 15th-century taproom offers Mighty Oak ales as well as ciders from Aspall's, Westons and Celtic Marches, bottled and draught lagers, and a fab range of wines from around the globe.

Open Tuesday to Sunday, Mighty Oak aims to create a calm yet chatty space for Maldonians to enjoy a drink with friends and family. 

You will spot the brewery's beers in pubs, farm shops and even at festival's across the South East and further afield.

On Sunday afternoons you will often find a live music act in the pub, with recent events including live acoustic sets and duo acts. 

Every other Tuesday evening the Taproom hosts Trevor's Quiz where revellers are invited to test their knowledge and attempt to win a cash prize.

Fancy a pint? 

To request a beer be offered at your local, speak to your pub landlord. 

"Most pubs can buy our beers, so everyone can have a taste of our brews at their local!" Gill said.

The Mighty Oak Brewery can deliver bottled beers and spirits to your home. These can be ordered directly on the Mighty Oak website, with free delivery to Maldon and Dengie postcodes (min order applies). National deliveries are available too - call the brewery for prices.

There are six bottled beers in their permanent range, including two of the award-winning ales previously mentioned.

Throwing a party this summer? You can buy bottled ales, bag-in-box ales and casks directly from the brewery shop, located at West Station Yard, Spital Road. 

The brewery is open Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm - walk-ins are welcomed, or call ahead for a fast pick-up.

     

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