Otter Brewery


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Tour details


Visits begin in the Green Shed. Check out both breweries – little and large – before seeing the eco-cellar, and finishing back with a tasting in the Green Shed.
By arrangement only

Course details

The Green Shed

In an initiative supported by the local licensing officer, the Green Shed – officially opened in October 2010 – is available for educational and informative talks with local businesses, schools, groups and associations, and for sports clubs to hold meetings and events.

Publicans and those involved in the hospitality industry will also be able to use it as a training facility, for staff development, cellar management and in understanding cask ale better.
A-Level Biology students will be able to visit the brewery, in support of their microbiology and biotechnology modules, and to tour the willow beds and other nature areas.

Opening times

All year

Open for tours by prior arrangement only


Christmas, New Year


Adults: £15
This includes food of some sort – for example, a barbecue in the summer – plus samples to taste.
minimum age: 18

Get in Touch

Tel: 01404 891285

Twitter: OtterBrewery
Facebook: Otter Brewery

Otter Brewery
Matthayes Lupitt
EX14 4SA
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Sustainability has always been important to the McCaigs, and their new Eco-cellar illustrates their ability to back up conviction with action. Burying half of it in the ground, using clever construction methods and installing both solar panels and a sedum roof means the brewery saves the equivalent of 6.5 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Mary Ann comes from a brewing background and David used to work for Whitbreads, so it was perhaps an understandable – if bold – move to go it alone when David was made redundant in the early 1980s. Settling in the middle of the Blackdown Hills, they draw their water from the head springs of the River Otter and produce a small but fine family of beers and a number of seasonals.

Joined by son Patrick, 2005 saw their new high tech brewery come into production. A few years later the "mini Otter" brewery arrived, providing scope for trialling new brews as well as consistency checks – watch this space. Recycling is followed assiduously throughout the brewery (see below). So much so that the brewery team of 30 produce the grand sum of one bag of waste a week.

Tours are solely for groups by arrangement. See Course details below for more on the newly opened Green Shed.

And check out the excellent video from the Otter website about A Day in the Life. It's enough to make you get your CV out and apply for a job there right now.


  • Otter Mild – 2010 Gold SIBA Awards
  • Otter Head – 2 Gold Stars, 2010 Great Taste Awards 
  • Eco-cellar – Eco Building of the Year, 2010 Commercial Property Awards

Annual Events

  • Beautiful Days Music Festival – family festival, August
  • Exeter Food & Drink Festival – April/May
  • Glastonbury – June – 600 firkins of Otter Ale & Bitter were drunk in 2010


  • Cellar – Otter has built the UK's first underground eco-cellar out of low carbon materials. It includes numerous energy saving measures and a living sedum roof.
  • Cleaning water – A series of willow beds treat all waste water before it is returned to the River Otter in pristine condition.
  • Recycling spent ingredients – yeast goes to a local piggery, brewers grains go to feed local cattle, spent hops become excellent leaf mulch for gardeners


Otter supports numerous local projects, sports teams and schools

Trade bodies

CAMRA, SIBA, Taste of the West, Slow Food Devon, Devon Environmental Business Initiative

Visited Spring 2010