Manchester-based family brewery Joseph Holt has begun a nationwide off-trade launch of its premium bottled ales.
The range comprises six beers - Humdinger, 1849, Maple Moon, Fifth Sense, Touchwood and Thunder Holt - ranging from 4.1 to 5.5% abv (rsp: £1.39 to £1.69 per bottle).
The company said it began to consider the off-trade potential of the beers after winning various accolades, including the Tesco Beer Challenge in 2004 with Humdinger and becoming a finalist in the same event in 2005 with Maple Moon.
It also won medals at the Brewing Industry International Awards 2005 for 1849 and Maple Moon.
Joseph Holt’s head brewer, Keith Sheard, said: “These awards are extremely prestigious within the industry and to win means a great deal to Holt as they have huge relevance and recognition worldwide.”
The range is now available to independent retailers through wholesaler Parfetts Cash & Carry. The full range is also stocked by supermarket chain Booths, and the company is also negotiating with Tesco to extend the one-year listing it was granted following its award win.
Tony Drummond, head of off-trade sales at Joseph Holt, said: “We feel the time is absolutely right to launch these products into the market, as the premium bottled ale category is one of the fastest growing.”
In order to meet increased demand for its bottled range, the company recently invested in the development of a microbrewery within its existing estate, which will concentrate solely on the bottled range.