Black Sheep Brewery has announced the appointment of Dan Scott Paul as its new Head Brewer.
Dan, who first joined Black Sheep in 1998, has held the role of Interim Head Brewer since January, and has now been appointed on a permanent basis to lead the brewing team and drive innovation at the Masham-based brewery.
He has enjoyed a successful 19-year career with Black Sheep, spanning a number of positions starting as a 16-year-old on the cask racking line, which he did alongside his studies at Agricultural College.
Returning in 2002 as Brewing/Process Operator, Dan progressed his career to QA Brewer then Second Brewer, before securing the role of Interim Head Brewer earlier this year. His experience with Black Sheep gives Dan extensive knowledge of the specialist brewing techniques required to brew its core range of beers as well as its creative and diverse portfolio for its seasonal calendar.
Dan, who obtained his IBD Diploma in Brewing in 2013, and is currently in his final year of a five-year Master Brewers course, said: “I feel very privileged to have been appointed Head Brewer at Black Sheep.
“As a 16-year-old working on the racking line I wouldn’t have dreamed that one day I would achieve this position, and I want to thank the whole team at the brewery for the support I have had throughout my time here. I am fortunate to have gained a lot of experience with previous Head Brewers, and look forward to taking up the mantle to drive innovation and creative brewing with the support of our amazing production team.”
Rob Theakston, managing director at Black Sheep Brewery said “We’re really excited for Dan to be leading the brewing team. He has been part of the Black Sheep family for almost two decades, and perfectly represents our values, traditions and forward thinking approach.
“His knowledge and expertise will allow us to continue to drive innovation and fresh thinking, which is epitomised by our 5 Barrel Project, an initiative led by Dan to create a range of new wave beers that have no constraints on style or ingredients.
“Dan has also been instrumental in the development of a number of award-winning beers in his tenure at Black Sheep, so we’re excited to see him continue to push brewing boundaries and create exciting brews.
Alongside his unique style and approach to our iconic brew kit, he will, of course, maintain our core brands and ensuring they continue to be consistent and of the highest quality.”
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The Black Sheep Brewery is one of British brewing’s most famous stories and has grown from humble beginnings to become a multi-award-winning company, with its beers enjoyed around the world.
Black Sheep has grown to become one of Yorkshire’s most recognised brands, with its beer distributed both nationally and internationally. Black Sheep continues to champion the county of Yorkshire and is the official brewer of the annual Tour de Yorkshire.
Black Sheep is a multi-award-winning brewer, having enjoyed numerous accolades in recent years including:
- The British Beer & Pub Association (BBPA) Beer Champion 2017
- International Brewing Awards – Milk Stout – Overall Champion (International Dark Beer)
- World Beer Awards 2019 – Milk Stout – UK Winner
- World Beer Awards 2019 – Pathmaker – Gold Award
- World Beer Awards 2019 – Black Sheep Ale – Silver Award
- World Beer Awards 2019 – Guzzler– Bronze Award
- World Beer Awards 2019 – Pineapple Milkshake IPA- Bronze Award
Based in Masham, in the heart of North Yorkshire, Black Sheep brewed its first beer in 1992 after being built up by Paul Theakston, whose family had brewed in the area for six generations.
In a world of ever-increasing bland, mass-produced beer, Paul saw an opportunity to return to what his family had done best since 1827, making real beer in the time-honoured fashion.
An old maltings building, once part of Lightfoot’s Brewery, became the Brewery’s home. This landmark building, which stands high over the banks of the Ure, had fallen into disrepair as years of neglect as a semi-redundant grainstore had taken its toll. Paul assembled a small team around him to fight the rats and build a traditional country brewery.
The Visitor Centre, at the site of the iconic brewery, has grown to become an award-winning attraction for visitors to Yorkshire, with tens of thousands of people flocking to Masham each year. In 2018, the Visitor Centre had a thorough refurbishment and offers the general public a menu of locally sourced Yorkshire food, its range of award-winning beers and tours of their iconic brewery.
In 2018, Black Sheep announced the purchase of York Brewery, which included the acquisition of four pubs in the business and key cask brands, including Guzzler and Yorkshire Terrier.
The outlets bought by Black Sheep, as part of the deal, are as follows:
- Last Drop Inn, York
- Mr Foley’s Tap House, Leeds
- The Three Legged Mare, York
- Tap and Kitchen, Leeds
The addition of York Brewery complements the strong, iconic Black Sheep brand and its existing award-winning beers and brands.
In 2018, Black Sheep also purchased the Chapel Allerton based bar, ‘Kith and Kin’ which they have since refurbished and renamed the ‘Black Sheep Tap & Kitchen’, which was officially launched on 28th February 2019.
The Black Sheep name derived from Masham’s association with sheep, but ‘Sheep Brewery’ didn’t quite sound right, so with a little creativity from Paul’s wife, the Black Sheep Brewery was born – a name that sat well with the area, spoke volumes about the business’ maverick attitude to the multi-nationals seeking to dominate the brewing industry and captured the essence of the family struggle that led to its birth.
Black Sheep’s beers are full of character derived from the best possible brewing materials, plenty of time and patience in the brewing and its very special Yorkshire Square fermenters.
Black Sheep Best Bitter is now one of the best-selling cask session beers in the UK and many of its creative brews, over the course of its 25-year history, have collected numerous awards – ranging from Black Sheep’s traditional ales to its up and coming craft beers.
2017 marked the launch of Black Sheep Brewery’s first lager, 54 Degrees North, created in homage to its hometown of Masham, which sits on 54’ 13’ 24” N; 1’ 39’ 20” W longitude and latitude lines, as the company embarks on an adventurous new chapter in its distinguished history.
In 2019, the brewery diversified their offering and entered the world of spirits by producing their own Black Sheep Yorkshire Dry Gin. The gin is distilled in Masham and within the production it features classic brewing ingredients including malted barley and Lemondrop hops.