Our Year in Beer
We can’t quite believe it, but 2022 is almost over, and we’re looking over the last 12 months at Vault City.
It’s been a big year for us, with new faces, new beers, collabs, supermarkets and our Taproom & Smokehouse popping up on Portobello High Street. We brewed some of our new favourite beers this year, and even released one of our top-rated beers of all time. With the bar set for 2023, we’re already making big plans and we’ve loved hearing everyone’s suggestions for our new release schedule.
Turn up the Vaultage
This year we released over 65 beers: from sessions to mid and high vaultage sours. We experimented with a lot of pastry/dessert sours in 2022, a style which we’d only dabbled with before, and we found ourselves going back to basics with some of our final releases, focusing in on the humble fruited sour beer for which we’ve always been known.
We collaborated with nearly 40 breweries this year, with 20 brews completed at our Edinburgh brewery and 19 away from home: including our first ever international collaborations!
The return of travel meant more than collabs abroad, we also found ourselves at 27 festivals around the world, with us even brewing a festival exclusive – just 300 litres of 999g/L Strawberry Banana Vanilla Crunch, a nod to our 999g/L series using the legal maximum amount of fruit while still calling it a beer.
More Vault Citizens
This year we welcomed lots of new faces to Vault City. Our team grew to 20 people across the brewery and our bars, making it harder than ever to get a team photo with everyone in it…
In January this year we made our 4-day work week permanent with no loss of pay. We also introduced our staff vouchers scheme, giving each team member £600 a year to spend across our bars, smokehouse and web shop. Many of these beers have now been re-gifted to family members for Christmas, reminding us of the true meaning of the season: excessive drinking and panic buying.
Sour to the Core
We introduced our core range in 2022, with over 200 bars around the UK joining our launch party, stocking kegs of Cloudy Lemonade and Strawberry Sundae. We supplied everyone with T-shirts, glassware and temporary tattoos, which later turned into real tattoos for some customers who are truly sour to the core.
Every Sour Helps…
We first saw Tropical and Raspberry sours hit Tesco shelves in 2021 and decided early this year that it was time for a change. We replaced 330ml bottles for 440ml cans for these releases (and later did the same for almost all our releases - except special editions). We introduced Triple Fruited Mango and Blueberry Maple, which we later swapped out for our ice cream inspired Raspberry Strawberry Coconut Ripple.
Hello Porty Vault
December marked our second year in sunny Portobello, and we’re pleased to say we’ve firmly planted our feet in Edinburgh’s seaside suburb, with the opening of our Taproom & Smokehouse on Portobello high street this July. Thanks to the help of our amazing crowd fund supporters we raised nearly £50,000 and gave back nearly £75,000 in vouchers – with a few extras including brew day experiences and our first ever brewery tours.
Since then, we’ve had 6 months of Porty Vault, serving beers from our 36 taps, low ‘n’ slow BBQ food from our authentic American smoker, and drinks on the go from our takeaway fridge.
With one of the biggest arts and comedy festivals on our doorstep, we decided to mark the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this year with a special collaboration and charity partnership. We partnered with comedian, Off Menu host, and Vault City fan, Ed Gamble after he named our Cloudy Lemonade his ‘desert island beer’…
With Canned Laughter we created an Apple & Guava Session Sour, brewed with the man himself during the Fringe, raising money for CALM and their life-saving services.
Make way for Morrisons
Vault City beers made their way to Morrisons’ shelves in July, with two brand new releases, Dark Fruits and Peach & Passion Fruit Bellini.
These fridge-fillers are like classic Vault City releases - bright in colour, bold in flavour and full of real fruit. If you haven’t tried them yet, here’s where you can find them.
2022 is the year we became an award-winning brewery. Now it’s true, we haven’t made a lot of effort with award entries to date, but the Scottish Food & Drink Awards felt like a great place to start, and we found ourselves up against some big competition. This release was entirely unique for us, and the collaboration was a massive milestone for Vault City, so we were delighted to take home the award for ‘Brewing Product of the Year’, alongside some nasty hangovers the following day.
The Wee Vault Turns 1
Our first ever taproom opened in November 2021. With more beer taps than seats, our cosy, corridor style bar will always hold a place in our heart. It seems to have had the same effect on lots of people, with it currently rated 4.9 on Google.
The Wee Vault turned 1 at the tail end of this year, a huge milestone considering we started the year with a partial lockdown for venues in Scotland. We marked the occasion the only way we know how, with good company and lots of great beers – including our Double Barrel-Aged Bruichladdich Whisky Sour collaboration with Brewgooder; an exclusive release which quickly found it’s way to the top of our Untappd ratings.
We don’t want to get too gushy here, but we hope everyone knows how much we appreciate the support we’ve seen this year. We can’t wait to show you all what we’ve been working on for 2023…