Double Maxim Beer Co, Houghton Le Spring
Our main brand Maxim Ale was first brewed in 1901 to celebrate the return of the Maxim gun detachment from the Boer War. Major Ernest Vaux (part of the original brewing family) commanded the detachment, which was part of the Northumberland Hussars. Initially the beer was reduced in strength because landlords complained of their customers falling asleep. In 1938 Vaux Breweries increased the beers strength and Double Maxim was born.
Following the closure of Vaux Breweries, the Double Maxim Beer Company Ltd was established in 1999 by Jim Murray, Mark Anderson and Doug Trotman. They all previously worked for Vaux, where Jim was the Head Brewer, Mark the Finance Director and Doug, the Sales & Marketing Director.
The initial aims of the new business was to sell and market the famous North East beers from the Vaux portfolio in bottles that North East beer drinkers had drunk for years.
In early 2000, Jim visited several brewers to review brewing procedures, plant, water quality etc to find a new home to brew Maxim Brewery´s beers. The outcome has been a close relationship over seven years with Robinsons Brewery in Stockport brewing and packaging Double Maxim, Samson, Ward´s Best Bitter and Maximus bottled and canned beers for sale in pubs across the North East and supermarkets across the country.
The long term aim for the business was always to return to brewing in the North East. The success of the bottled beer business and support of our consumers has made this possible with the new purpose built site at Rainton Bridge. The 22Brl brewery was previously the Canongate Brewery and was located on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh. This was S&N´s pilot brew house built to very high specification and is probably the best equipment of its size anywhere in the UK. Maxim Brewery bought all the plant and equipment in 2006 and spent most of 2007 commissioning the brewery.
Maxim Brewery is now able brew beer for its own bottles and crucially brew and sell cask beers locally, which had not been commercially viable at Robinsons. Cask beers regularly available are Samson (4% ABV) and Double Maxim (4.7% ABV). Ward´s Best Bitter (4% ABV) and Maximus (6% ABV) are rotated on a guest basis along with new beers that are currently undergoing trial.
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