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26th September 2013

Brewing duo resurrects a princess – Somerset’s Kubla Brewery teams up with award-winning beer sommelier

A microbrewery based at Lydeard St Lawrence, near Exmoor, has teamed up with an award-winning beer expert to create an unusual brew for Bristol Beer Week (3rd – 9th Oct).

Kaite Loomes of Kubla Brewery asked Beer Sommelier of the Year, Sophie Atherton, to do a collaboration brew with her after the two met while visiting another brewery in London.
“I recognised Sophie because I’d seen her judging a beer competition on television and I thought I’d go and say hello,” explained Kaite – who founded her brewery just under a year ago.
“She came to see us and really liked our beers so I thought I’d ask if she wanted to brew something with me.”
The two women came up with a recipe for a beer which they say is ‘pretending to be a cocktail’. Given this masquerade – and the fact it is for the city’s Beer Week – they decided to name the brew after infamous Bristol character Princess Caraboo.
The princess was actually a cobbler’s daughter from Devon, Mary Willcocks, who in 1817 hoodwinked Bristol’s gentry into believing she was from a tiny island in the Indian Ocean and had ended up in the city after escaping from pirates who had kidnapped her. She is commemorated with a blue plaque at 11 Princess St in Bedminster.
“The story of Princess Caraboo captured our imagination,” says Sophie.
“She seems like a young woman trying to escape a mundane existence by creating a story about a more exciting world. We hope that our Princess Caraboo tastes like that – lots of big, hoppy flavours to which we’ve added a little coconut for a tropical twist – a drink that wants to be a beer but something more exotic too,” she added.
Kaite and Sophie’s beer will be officially unveiled at The Crofters Rights pub in Bristol on Monday 7th October. Full details are available on the Bristol Beer Week website:
For further information, high res images, photo opportunities, interview and beer tasting requests, contact:
Kaite Loomes, 07855 342 208; or Sophie Atherton, 07946 112 025.
Editors’ notes
  1. Sophie Atherton was recognised as Beer Sommelier of the Year by the All Party Parliamentary Beer Group this summer. She was also the first woman in the UK to be accredited as a Beer Sommelier. A journalist for more than a decade she writes regularly for CAMRA’s BEER magazine and the national press. She also appears on TV and radio, gives beer talks and runs tastings across the Westcountry and beyond. More details are available on her beer blog
  1. Kubla Brewery makes its beers by hand and says its brews are inspired by the natural and wild surroundings in which we live and play. With a healthy respect for tradition they have crafted a range of modern beers made using locally sourced malts, hops from both hemispheres, creative skill and time. Head Brewer Kaite Loomes previously worked in the restaurant business and food industry and knows more than a thing or two about flavour. She started home brewing in 2010 and after working hard to learn the craft and experimenting with various beers and flavours realised her skills had commercial potential and so decided to start a brewery. For more details visit
  1. Princess Caraboo will be 7% ABV and is a speciality global pale ale. More details can be found here:
  1. Bristol Beer Week (3rd – 9th Oct) is a celebration of everything beery in the West Country. A week long program of beer festivals, meet the brewer events, food and beer tastings, education sessions, brewing demonstrations and, basically, everything anyone can think of to do with beer. More information from:
Contacts for further information, high res images, photo opportunities, interview and beer tasting requests:
Kaite Loomes, 07855 342 208; or Sophie Atherton, 07946 112 025.
Sophie Atherton
Freelance Journalist & Accredited Beer Sommelier
Mob: 07946 112 025
All Party Parliamentary Beer Group ‘Beer Sommelier of the Year’