In the spring of 2012, we received a box of Green Jack beers at our place in Ghent. The beers were so lovely and characterful that we resolved to pay the brewer a visit at the end of our Belgian sojourn. The storybook impression made by our destination was highlighted by the route we took: we traveled from Ghent to Reyjkjavik, Florence, Copenhagen, Esberg, and Harwich (by overnight ferry), then traversed along the North Sea coast of East Anglia to Lowestoft, the most easterly point in the United Kingdom.
The Green Jack Brewery (6000 hectoliter) is installed in a former herring smokehouse at the end of Love Lane. Therein Tim Dunford – the idiosyncratic, playful and witty founder/brewer – produces a stunning range of small batch, site-specific, Belgian-influenced beers. They are not widely distributed – mainly sold in Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridge – but real ale cognoscenti prize them for their balance, originality and finesse. The UK’s foremost cellarman, Mark Dorber, in whose company we enjoyed these beers at his Anchor Pub in Walberswick, numbers among them.
All Green Jack beers are brewed with Flagon winter barley, and are all grown and malted in Norfolk (according to Dunford, the best barley in the world in most growing seasons). Moreover, all are fermented with the same four strains of English ale yeast – which can be traced back over 100 years – and use whole flower hops. 90% of production is cask, 10% in swing top bottles. This is a stupendous little brewery and we think you are going to be delighted by them!
New for 2013: GREEN JACK RIPPA (English Tripel), RED HERRING (Smoked Ale), LURCHER (Stout), GONE FISHING (ESB), and TRAWLERBOYS (English Ale).