KNUTSFORD’S first locally brewed beer in more than 100 years will be ready to drink at the Cheshire Show.

Gregg and Claire Sawyer and their team have been busy perfecting the formula for Tatton Best, at the brewery in Longridge trading estate.

The Guardian visited Tatton Brewery on Wednesday when the first brew, which will make around 3,500 pints, had just been completed.

Gregg said: “It’s taken us almost six months to get to this point.”

“It’s nerve-racking,” added Claire. “It’s like giving birth.”

So far, the process has involved mixing 300kg of malted barley with 2,200 litres of water for almost five hours.

Then 8kg of hops are added to the blend in a giant ‘kettle’ for a further two hours in a stage called ‘mashing’.

The beer now has to be left to ferment, but it is hoped it will be ready to sell on Monday.

Gregg added: “I’m just excited. I can’t wait to get it out there. The real challenge now is selling it.”

Tatton Best will be available at the Cheshire Show, in Tabley, and the RHS Flower Show, at Tatton Park.

The brewery has also had interest from a number of pubs, including the Rose and Crown in King Street; The Falcon Bearer, in Longridge Avenue; Egerton Arms, in Chelford, and The Church Inn and Bull’s Head, in Mobberley.

Knutsford Brewery is believed to have closed in 1906, meaning Gregg and Claire’s business is the first commercial brewery in the town in more than 100 years.

Gregg said: “You get comments from people but it’s mostly good natured joshing.

“Certainly our neighbours have been sticking their heads in to see what we’re up to. Knutsford has been crying out for a brewery for years.”

“There’s a lot of excitement,” added Claire.

“People are already checking us out and want to buy the beer. Knutsford’s a great place with the food connections.

“It’s quite affluent. You only have to look in Booths and see all the beers there.”

The couple, who have lived in Knutsford for three-and-a-half years, have the added bonus of being guided by former Boddington’s head brewer Paul Buttrick.

Employee Andrew Last also has connections with the Swansea Beer Festival and it is hoped more jobs will be created next year, as the brewery grows.

Gregg and Claire Sawyer ploughed their life savings into the venture – along with a £40,000 grant from the Northwest Regional Development Agency.

After studying for a diploma through the American Brewers Guild, Gregg completed an apprenticeship at a brewery in Massachusetts.

He then moved on to Westerham Brewery, in Kent, before deciding he would set up business in Knutsford.

Tatton Brewery will produce three brews throughout the year – Tatton Ale, Tatton Best and Tatton Gold – along with two seasonal varieties.

For more information or to place an order, email tatton.brewery@

l Tatton Best is expected to be available at the Church Inn and Egerton Arms, on Friday.