A Warwickshire-based company is celebrating after hitting more major milestones in just one month – taking it forward in its mission to become the UK’s Number One premium beer brand.
Empress scooped a silver award in the coveted Great British Food Awards for its IPA and gluten-free lager, which are stocked in top restaurants and bars across the country.
The award came in the same month that the beer took pride of place at an event for national supermarket chain Waitrose at its flagship Canary Wharf store.
Empress’ British pilsner-style lager was on tap at the Waitrose bar takeover, where customers had the chance to taste the gluten-free, vegan, organic beer for themselves. The event came less than a year after Waitrose started stocking Empress at 297 of its stores nationwide in a coup for the Warwickshire-based brand.
Founder Surj Virk, from Leamington Spa, said the high-profile appearance along with a prestigious award recognising the quality of its beers, are the latest steps in the brand’s mission to become the UK’s beer of choice in restaurants, bars, hotels and homes.
He said: “October was a great month for Empress. Not only were we delighted to win silver in the Great British Food Awards – but we also showcased our brand in one of the busiest supermarket branches in the country.
“We’ve always prioritised taste and quality across all of our products and we hope that with our lager we’ve turned the idea that gluten-free beers are often considered poorer quality and lacking in flavour on its head, and proved that ours challenges some of the top brands out there.
“When we first went to Waitrose, they loved the fact we were not only gluten-free, organic and vegan but that we were an up-and-coming British artisan brand – something also recognised in the Great British Food Awards.”
The double wins are the latest milestones for Empress, which was the beer of choice at celebrations for the World’s 50 Best Hotels held at five-star hotel The Langham.
The brand, which includes a Pale Ale and an IPA, is already stocked in prestigious venues across the country – including the world-famous Royal Academy of Music in London, as well as high-end restaurants, demonstrating how well it pairs with food.
Empress, which was founded in 2016, is listed in venues including Tom Kerridge’s Michelin-starred Hand and Flowers and Michelin-starred restaurant Opheem in Birmingham, as well as The Peninsula Hotel, featuring Claude Bosi’s rooftop restaurant Brooklands.
Empress Global Sales Director Nicos Charalambous added: “In just a short time, we’ve developed a broad portfolio of venues keen to stock our beers, including our lager. More and more foodie places want to stock beers that will pair well with their food and be enjoyed by customers who value flavour and quality, and Empress definitely fits the bill.
“On top of that, being stocked in Waitrose means discerning customers who want to enjoy a premium, British-based craft lager that’s organic, gluten-free and vegan can get their hands on Empress.
“Being award-winning just cements that idea that we are up there with the best. We’re on a mission to become the number one premium beer brand in the UK, and we won’t be stopping until we’ve achieved that.”
For more information and to order online, visit www.empressale.com