Monday, 1 April 2013

Tomos Watkin Brewery

My column for the February 2013 issue of Swansea Life magazine.






















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Big Day Out!

Tomos Watkin Brewery

ON LOCATION: At Tomos Watkin’s brewery in Llansamlet, Swansea Enterprise Park, groups can take a tour of the famous Welsh brewery and sample their award wining beers and ciders. For sat-nav users the address and postcode is: Unit 3, Century Park, Swansea Enterprise Park, Swansea, SA6 8RP.

CROWD SCENE: All age groups over 18 are welcome. Students and under 30s usually choose to go on the weekends before a night out. 

HISTORY: The present incarnation of Tomos Watkin was started in 1995 by Simon Buckley and first operated from a small brewery in Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire before moving to their current premises in Swansea Enterprise Park in 1999. The Hurns Brewing Company acquired the Swansea brewer in 2002 and today Tomas Watkin exports their beers and other beverages to countries around the world, including the United Arab Emirates, China, Singapore, France, and the United States. 

TOURS: The tour consists of a three hour visit and starts with drinks and a warm welcome on arrival from one of the brewers who will give you a 20 minuet talk about the history of the Hurns Brewing Company and Tomos Watkin. This is followed by a tour around the brewery which lasts around half an hour where visitors are shown the full brewing process from raw material to packaging the product.

LOOK OUT FOR: During the tour visitors get a chance to look into the vats where 16,000 pints worth of beer ferments every day for export across Wales and around the world. 

FOOD AND DRINKS: After the tour visitors relocate back to the brewery tap for more sampling of the finished products and there is also a cold buffet including sausage roles, crisps, chicken legs, cocktail sausages and other snacks available.

TOUR TIMES AND PRICES: The tours cost £22.50 per person Monday to Thursday from 6pm to 9pm, there are also Friday tours available at £25 per person from 6pm to 9pm. For the same price as Friday tours, visitors can book a tour any time between 12pm and 8pm on Saturdays.

PARENTAL GUIDELINES: You must be over 18 to visit the brewery at the above times, but there are special school tours available at other times.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Cameras are allowed on the tour and visitors are encouraged to take as many photos as they want of the brewery, or even make a video of their tour.

STAFF: All the staff are dedicated and happy to answer any questions about the process. At the start of the tour chief brewer and tour guide Alex Cunningham hands out samples of the different varieties of malt the brewery uses to make their world famous beer. There is even a chocolate flavour to try.

PROS: After paying for the tour the buffet lunch and drinks are free, and there is no limit on how much you can eat and drink. 

CONS: There is a minimum of 12 people and a maximum of 25 people allowed per tour. 

TOP TIP: Remember to drink responsibly, or, bring a designated driver with you. You can buy some bottles of the brewery’s beers and ciders to take home with you to enjoy later. 

TELL ME MORE: More information is available at www.tomoswatkin.com, or, you can phone 01792 797280. To book a tour send an email to shop@tomoswatkin.com. 

Richard Thomas is the author of Sci-Fi Worlds and Para-News, both available from www.amazon.co.uk. Visit Richard Thomas's website at www.richardthomas.eu.

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