Northern Ireland

New and Modest in Holywood, with one L

Hold my glass, there’s a spanking new brewery in town. Well, I suppose that depends what town you’re in. Fair enough – if it’s anywhere other than Holywood, then no, but if it is Holywood, then yes.

Modest Beer is the baby of Chris Morris and he’s relishing the daunting challenge of being commercially available in 2020. A home brewer for a few years, Chris started investigating the business process this year after supplying a brew for a friend’s wedding in Bristol in 2018.

Detailing to me his commitment to helping those lucky friends, thankfully the homebrew was very well received after being shipped over. We all need good friends like him.

I met up with Chris at the brewery, a converted garage beside the family home, tucked away in a leafy residential area of Holywood, County Down (just in case there was any confusion with that other well known Hollywood, as the blurb on the back of his cans point out).

So that’s a quick back story. Now what about the beer?

The 330ml can says it’s a 4.2% ABV New England pale ale, indeed a bold move for a first brew. It has a pleasing, dense and foamy head and the beer is a faint yellow colour in the glass. It’s hazy, but not thick, and there’s a whiff of lemon.

As expected if you use Simcoe, Citra and Mosaic hops, there’s an abundance of grapefruit crossed with mild mandarin orange and passionfruit, finished off with subtle pine quality. It’s also a touch creamy which adds to the delight. That’s all beer blogger garbage speak for “it’s really good”.

For his first commercial beer I take my hat off to Chris. This is no modest beer, this is something to shout about.